Toxicity Of Novel Organotellurium Compounds Using Bacterial Growth Inhibition

Shiv J. Patel, Zhi Lin, Verena Van Fleet-Stalder, Thomas Junk(*), and Thomas G. Chasteen
Department of Chemistry, Sam Houston State University, Huntsville, Texas and
The Texas Regional Institute for Environmental Studies, Huntsville, Texas
*Louisiana State University, Baton Rouge, Louisiana

100th Texas Academy of Sciences Meeting in Huntsville, Texas
March 6-8, 1997

Toxicities of recently synthesized organotellurium compounds such as ditelluranthrene and 3,3',4,4'-tetrachlorodiphenyl ditelluride are unknown. A set of experiments testing these compounds was performed using the bacterium Pseudomonas fluorescens K27. Replicate cultures of bacteria in the log phase cells were poisoned with different concentrations of the tellurium compound of interest which had been dissolved in DMSO. The control contained no tellurium. The optical density of the cultures was measured until they reached stationary phase. Percent growth inhibition and specific growth rate inhibition were calculated for each concentration. The 6 x 10-5 M concentration of ditelluranthrene did yield 100% growth inhibition; however, for many of the large organometalloidal compounds tested low aqueous solubility limited the applicability of the method used.