Science.gov

Sample records for microbial communities potentially

  1. Nitrogen Cycling Potential of a Grassland Litter Microbial Community.

    PubMed

    Nelson, Michaeline B; Berlemont, Renaud; Martiny, Adam C; Martiny, Jennifer B H

    2015-10-01

    Because microorganisms have different abilities to utilize nitrogen (N) through various assimilatory and dissimilatory pathways, microbial composition and diversity likely influence N cycling in an ecosystem. Terrestrial plant litter decomposition is often limited by N availability; however, little is known about the microorganisms involved in litter N cycling. In this study, we used metagenomics to characterize the potential N utilization of microbial communities in grassland plant litter. The frequencies of sequences associated with eight N cycling pathways differed by several orders of magnitude. Within a pathway, the distributions of these sequences among bacterial orders differed greatly. Many orders within the Actinobacteria and Proteobacteria appeared to be N cycling generalists, carrying genes from most (five or six) of the pathways. In contrast, orders from the Bacteroidetes were more specialized and carried genes for fewer (two or three) pathways. We also investigated how the abundance and composition of microbial N cycling genes differed over time and in response to two global change manipulations (drought and N addition). For many pathways, the abundance and composition of N cycling taxa differed over time, apparently reflecting precipitation patterns. In contrast to temporal variability, simulated global change had minor effects on N cycling potential. Overall, this study provides a blueprint for the genetic potential of N cycle processes in plant litter and a baseline for comparisons to other ecosystems.

  2. Analyses of soil microbial community compositions and functional genes reveal potential consequences of natural forest succession

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cong, Jing; Yang, Yunfeng; Liu, Xueduan; Lu, Hui; Liu, Xiao; Zhou, Jizhong; Li, Diqiang; Yin, Huaqun; Ding, Junjun; Zhang, Yuguang

    2015-05-01

    The succession of microbial community structure and function is a central ecological topic, as microbes drive the Earth’s biogeochemical cycles. To elucidate the response and mechanistic underpinnings of soil microbial community structure and metabolic potential relevant to natural forest succession, we compared soil microbial communities from three adjacent natural forests: a coniferous forest (CF), a mixed broadleaf forest (MBF) and a deciduous broadleaf forest (DBF) on Shennongjia Mountain in central China. In contrary to plant communities, the microbial taxonomic diversity of the DBF was significantly (P < 0.05) higher than those of CF and MBF, rendering their microbial community compositions markedly different. Consistently, microbial functional diversity was also highest in the DBF. Furthermore, a network analysis of microbial carbon and nitrogen cycling genes showed the network for the DBF samples was relatively large and tight, revealing strong couplings between microbes. Soil temperature, reflective of climate regimes, was important in shaping microbial communities at both taxonomic and functional gene levels. As a first glimpse of both the taxonomic and functional compositions of soil microbial communities, our results suggest that microbial community structure and function potentials will be altered by future environmental changes, which have implications for forest succession.

  3. Analyses of soil microbial community compositions and functional genes reveal potential consequences of natural forest succession

    PubMed Central

    Cong, Jing; Yang, Yunfeng; Liu, Xueduan; Lu, Hui; Liu, Xiao; Zhou, Jizhong; Li, Diqiang; Yin, Huaqun; Ding, Junjun; Zhang, Yuguang

    2015-01-01

    The succession of microbial community structure and function is a central ecological topic, as microbes drive the Earth’s biogeochemical cycles. To elucidate the response and mechanistic underpinnings of soil microbial community structure and metabolic potential relevant to natural forest succession, we compared soil microbial communities from three adjacent natural forests: a coniferous forest (CF), a mixed broadleaf forest (MBF) and a deciduous broadleaf forest (DBF) on Shennongjia Mountain in central China. In contrary to plant communities, the microbial taxonomic diversity of the DBF was significantly (P < 0.05) higher than those of CF and MBF, rendering their microbial community compositions markedly different. Consistently, microbial functional diversity was also highest in the DBF. Furthermore, a network analysis of microbial carbon and nitrogen cycling genes showed the network for the DBF samples was relatively large and tight, revealing strong couplings between microbes. Soil temperature, reflective of climate regimes, was important in shaping microbial communities at both taxonomic and functional gene levels. As a first glimpse of both the taxonomic and functional compositions of soil microbial communities, our results suggest that microbial community structure and function potentials will be altered by future environmental changes, which have implications for forest succession. PMID:25943705

  4. Analyses of soil microbial community compositions and functional genes reveal potential consequences of natural forest succession.

    PubMed

    Cong, Jing; Yang, Yunfeng; Liu, Xueduan; Lu, Hui; Liu, Xiao; Zhou, Jizhong; Li, Diqiang; Yin, Huaqun; Ding, Junjun; Zhang, Yuguang

    2015-05-06

    The succession of microbial community structure and function is a central ecological topic, as microbes drive the Earth's biogeochemical cycles. To elucidate the response and mechanistic underpinnings of soil microbial community structure and metabolic potential relevant to natural forest succession, we compared soil microbial communities from three adjacent natural forests: a coniferous forest (CF), a mixed broadleaf forest (MBF) and a deciduous broadleaf forest (DBF) on Shennongjia Mountain in central China. In contrary to plant communities, the microbial taxonomic diversity of the DBF was significantly (P < 0.05) higher than those of CF and MBF, rendering their microbial community compositions markedly different. Consistently, microbial functional diversity was also highest in the DBF. Furthermore, a network analysis of microbial carbon and nitrogen cycling genes showed the network for the DBF samples was relatively large and tight, revealing strong couplings between microbes. Soil temperature, reflective of climate regimes, was important in shaping microbial communities at both taxonomic and functional gene levels. As a first glimpse of both the taxonomic and functional compositions of soil microbial communities, our results suggest that microbial community structure and function potentials will be altered by future environmental changes, which have implications for forest succession.

  5. Studies on potential effects of fumaric acid on rumen microbial fermentation, methane production and microbial community.

    PubMed

    Riede, Susanne; Boguhn, Jeannette; Breves, Gerhard

    2013-01-01

    The greenhouse gas methane (CH4) contributes substantially to global climate change. As a potential approach to decrease ruminal methanogenesis, the effects of different dosages of fumaric acid (FA) on ruminal microbial metabolism and on the microbial community (archaea, bacteria) were studied using a rumen simulation technique (RUSITEC). FA acts as alternative hydrogen acceptor diverting 2H from methanogenesis of archaea towards propionate formation of bacteria. Three identical trials were conducted with 12 fermentation vessels over a period of 14 days. In each trial, four fermentation vessels were assigned to one of the three treatment groups differing in FA dosage: low fumaric acid (LFA), high fumaric acid (HFA) and without FA (control). FA was continuously infused with the buffer. Grass silage and concentrate served as substrate. FA led to decreases in pH and to higher production rates of total short chain fatty acids (SCFA) mediated by increases in propionate for LFA of 1.69 mmol d(-1) and in propionate and acetate production for HFA of 4.49 and 1.10 mmol d(-1), respectively. Concentrations of NH3-N, microbial crude protein synthesis, their efficiency, degradation of crude nutrients and detergent fibre fraction were unchanged. Total gas and CH4 production were not affected by FA. Effects of FA on structure of microbial community by means of single strand conformation polymorphism (SSCP) analyses could not be detected. Given the observed increase in propionate production and the unaffected CH4 production it can be supposed that the availability of reduction equivalents like 2H was not limited by the addition of FA in this study. It has to be concluded from the present study that the application of FA is not an appropriate approach to decrease the ruminal CH4 production.

  6. Soil microbial communities alter leaf chemistry and influence allelopathic potential among coexisting plant species.

    PubMed

    Meiners, Scott J; Phipps, Kelsey K; Pendergast, Thomas H; Canam, Thomas; Carson, Walter P

    2017-04-01

    While both plant-soil feedbacks and allelochemical interactions are key drivers of plant community dynamics, the potential for these two drivers to interact with each other remains largely unexplored. If soil microbes influence allelochemical production, this would represent a novel dimension of heterogeneity in plant-soil feedbacks. To explore the linkage between soil microbial communities and plant chemistry, we experimentally generated soil microbial communities and evaluated their impact on leaf chemical composition and allelopathic potential. Four native perennial old-field species (two each of Aster and Solidago) were grown in pairwise combination with each species' soil microbial community as well as a sterilized inoculum. We demonstrated unequivocally that variation in soil microbial communities altered leaf chemical fingerprints for all focal plant species and also changed their allelopathic potential. Soil microbes reduced allelopathic potential in bioassays by increasing germination 25-54% relative to sterile control soils in all four species. Plants grown with their own microbial communities had the lowest allelopathic potential, suggesting that allelochemical production may be lessened when growing with microbes from conspecifics. The allelopathic potential of plants grown in congener and confamilial soils was indistinguishable from each other, indicating an equivalent response to all non-conspecific microbial communities within these closely related genera. Our results clearly demonstrated that soil microbial communities cause changes in leaf tissue chemistry that altered their allelopathic properties. These findings represent a new mechanism of plant-soil feedbacks that may structure perennial plant communities over very small spatial scales that must be explored in much more detail.

  7. Microbial community composition and in silico predicted metabolic potential reflect biogeochemical gradients between distinct peatland types.

    PubMed

    Urbanová, Zuzana; Bárta, Jiří

    2014-12-01

    It is not well understood how the ecological status and microbial community composition of spruce swamp forests (SSF) relate to those found in bogs and fens. To clarify this, we investigated biogeochemical parameters and microbial community composition in a bog, a fen and two SSF using high throughput barcoded sequencing of the small ribosomal subunit (SSU) variable region V4. The results demonstrated that the microbial community of SSF is positioned between those of bogs and fens, and this was confirmed by in silico predicted metabolic potentials. This corresponds well with the position of SSF on the trophic gradient and reflects distinct responses of microbial communities to environmental variables. Species richness and microbial diversity increased significantly from bog to fen, with SSF in between, reflecting the variation in pH, nutrient availability and peat decomposability. The archaeal community, dominated by hydrogenotrophic methanogens, was more similar in SSF and the bog compared with the fen. The composition of the bacterial community of SSF was intermediate between those of bog and fen. However, the production of CO2 (an indicator of peat decomposability) did not differ between SSF and bog, suggesting the limiting effect of low pH and poor litter quality on the functioning of the bacterial community in SSF. These results help to clarify the transitional position of SSF between bogs and fens and showed the strong effect of environmental conditions on microbial community composition and functioning.

  8. Cellulolytic potential under environmental changes in microbial communities from grassland litter

    PubMed Central

    Berlemont, Renaud; Allison, Steven D.; Weihe, Claudia; Lu, Ying; Brodie, Eoin L.; Martiny, Jennifer B. H.; Martiny, Adam C.

    2014-01-01

    In many ecosystems, global changes are likely to profoundly affect microorganisms. In Southern California, changes in precipitation and nitrogen deposition may influence the composition and functional potential of microbial communities and their resulting ability to degrade plant material. To test whether such environmental changes impact the distribution of functional groups involved in leaf litter degradation, we determined how the genomic diversity of microbial communities in a semi-arid grassland ecosystem changed under reduced precipitation or increased N deposition. We monitored communities seasonally over a period of 2 years to place environmental change responses into the context of natural variation. Fungal and bacterial communities displayed strong seasonal patterns, Fungi being mostly detected during the dry season whereas Bacteria were common during wet periods. Most putative cellulose degraders were associated with 33 bacterial genera and predicted to constitute 18% of the microbial community. Precipitation reduction reduced bacterial abundance and cellulolytic potential whereas nitrogen addition did not affect the cellulolytic potential of the microbial community. Finally, we detected a strong correlation between the frequencies of genera of putative cellulose degraders and cellulase genes. Thus, microbial taxonomic composition was predictive of cellulolytic potential. This work provides a framework for how environmental changes affect microorganisms responsible for plant litter deconstruction. PMID:25505459

  9. Cellulolytic potential under environmental changes in microbial communities from grassland litter

    SciTech Connect

    Berlemont, Renaud; Allison, Steven D.; Weihe, Claudia; Lu, Ying; Brodie, Eoin L.; Martiny, Jennifer B. H.; Martiny, Adam C.

    2014-11-25

    In many ecosystems, global changes are likely to profoundly affect microorganisms. In Southern California, changes in precipitation and nitrogen deposition may influence the composition and functional potential of microbial communities and their resulting ability to degrade plant material. To test whether such environmental changes impact the distribution of functional groups involved in leaf litter degradation, we determined how the genomic diversity of microbial communities in a semi-arid grassland ecosystem changed under reduced precipitation or increased N deposition. We monitored communities seasonally over a period of 2 years to place environmental change responses into the context of natural variation. Fungal and bacterial communities displayed strong seasonal patterns, Fungi being mostly detected during the dry season whereas Bacteria were common during wet periods. Most putative cellulose degraders were associated with 33 bacterial genera and predicted to constitute 18% of the microbial community. Precipitation reduction reduced bacterial abundance and cellulolytic potential whereas nitrogen addition did not affect the cellulolytic potential of the microbial community. Finally, we detected a strong correlation between the frequencies of genera of putative cellulose degraders and cellulase genes. Thus, microbial taxonomic composition was predictive of cellulolytic potential. This work provides a framework for how environmental changes affect microorganisms responsible for plant litter deconstruction.

  10. Cellulolytic potential under environmental changes in microbial communities from grassland litter

    DOE PAGES

    Berlemont, Renaud; Allison, Steven D.; Weihe, Claudia; ...

    2014-11-25

    In many ecosystems, global changes are likely to profoundly affect microorganisms. In Southern California, changes in precipitation and nitrogen deposition may influence the composition and functional potential of microbial communities and their resulting ability to degrade plant material. To test whether such environmental changes impact the distribution of functional groups involved in leaf litter degradation, we determined how the genomic diversity of microbial communities in a semi-arid grassland ecosystem changed under reduced precipitation or increased N deposition. We monitored communities seasonally over a period of 2 years to place environmental change responses into the context of natural variation. Fungal andmore » bacterial communities displayed strong seasonal patterns, Fungi being mostly detected during the dry season whereas Bacteria were common during wet periods. Most putative cellulose degraders were associated with 33 bacterial genera and predicted to constitute 18% of the microbial community. Precipitation reduction reduced bacterial abundance and cellulolytic potential whereas nitrogen addition did not affect the cellulolytic potential of the microbial community. Finally, we detected a strong correlation between the frequencies of genera of putative cellulose degraders and cellulase genes. Thus, microbial taxonomic composition was predictive of cellulolytic potential. This work provides a framework for how environmental changes affect microorganisms responsible for plant litter deconstruction.« less

  11. The Potential of Hyperspectral Patterns of Winter Wheat to Detect Changes in Soil Microbial Community Composition

    PubMed Central

    Carvalho, Sabrina; van der Putten, Wim H.; Hol, W. H. G.

    2016-01-01

    Reliable information on soil status and crop health is crucial for detecting and mitigating disasters like pollution or minimizing impact from soil-borne diseases. While infestation with an aggressive soil pathogen can be detected via reflected light spectra, it is unknown to what extent hyperspectral reflectance could be used to detect overall changes in soil biodiversity. We tested the hypotheses that spectra can be used to (1) separate plants growing with microbial communities from different farms; (2) to separate plants growing in different microbial communities due to different land use; and (3) separate plants according to microbial species loss. We measured hyperspectral reflectance patterns of winter wheat plants growing in sterilized soils inoculated with microbial suspensions under controlled conditions. Microbial communities varied due to geographical distance, land use and microbial species loss caused by serial dilution. After 3 months of growth in the presence of microbes from the two different farms plant hyperspectral reflectance patterns differed significantly from each other, while within farms the effects of land use via microbes on plant reflectance spectra were weak. Species loss via dilution on the other hand affected a number of spectral indices for some of the soils. Spectral reflectance can be indicative of differences in microbial communities, with the Renormalized Difference Vegetation Index the most common responding index. Also, a positive correlation was found between the Normalized Difference Vegetation Index and the bacterial species richness, which suggests that plants perform better with higher microbial diversity. There is considerable variation between the soil origins and currently it is not possible yet to make sufficient reliable predictions about the soil microbial community based on the spectral reflectance. We conclude that measuring plant hyperspectral reflectance has potential for detecting changes in microbial

  12. Microbial communities in karst groundwater and their potential use for biomonitoring

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pronk, Michiel; Goldscheider, Nico; Zopfi, Jakob

    2009-02-01

    The structure, diversity and dynamics of microbial communities from a swallow hole draining agricultural land and two connected karst springs (Switzerland) were studied using molecular microbiological methods and related to hydrological and physicochemical parameters. Storm responses and an annual hydrological cycle were monitored to determine the short- and long-term variability, respectively, of bacterial communities. Statistical analysis of bacterial genetic fingerprints (16S rDNA PCR-DGGE) of spring water samples revealed several clusters that corresponded well with different levels of the allochthonous swallow hole contribution. Microbial communities in spring water samples highly affected by the swallow hole showed low similarities among them, reflecting the high temporal variability of the bacterial communities infiltrating at the swallow hole. Conversely, high similarities among samples with low allochthonous contribution provided evidence for a stable autochthonous endokarst microbial community. Three spring samples, representative for low, medium and high swallow hole contribution, were analysed by cloning/sequencing in order to identify the major bacterial groups in the communities. The autochthonous endokarst microbial community was mainly characterized of δ-Proteobacteria, Acidobacteria and Nitrospira species. A high percentage of unknown sequences suggested further that many karst aquifer bacteria are still undiscovered. Finally, the potential use of groundwater biomonitoring using microbial communities is discussed.

  13. Microbial Community Functional Potential and Composition Are Shaped by Hydrologic Connectivity in Riverine Floodplain Soils.

    PubMed

    Argiroff, William A; Zak, Donald R; Lanser, Christine M; Wiley, Michael J

    2017-04-01

    Riverine floodplains are ecologically and economically valuable ecosystems that are heavily threatened by anthropogenic stressors. Microbial communities in floodplain soils mediate critical biogeochemical processes, yet we understand little about the relationship between these communities and variation in hydrologic connectivity related to land management or topography. Here, we present metagenomic evidence that differences among microbial communities in three floodplain soils correspond to a long-term gradient of hydrologic connectivity. Specifically, all strictly anaerobic taxa and metabolic pathways were positively associated with increased hydrologic connectivity and flooding frequency. In contrast, most aerobic taxa and all strictly aerobic pathways were negatively related to hydrologic connectivity and flooding frequency. Furthermore, the genetic potential to metabolize organic compounds tended to decrease as hydrologic connectivity increased, which may reflect either the observed concomitant decline of soil organic matter or the parallel increase in both anaerobic taxa and pathways. A decline in soil N, accompanied by an increased genetic potential for oligotrophic N acquisition subsystems, suggests that soil nutrients also shape microbial communities in these soils. We conclude that differences among floodplain soil microbial communities can be conceptualized along a gradient of hydrologic connectivity. Additionally, we show that these differences are likely due to connectivity-related variation in flooding frequency, soil organic matter, and soil N. Our findings are particularly relevant to the restoration and management of microbially mediated biogeochemical processes in riverine floodplain wetlands.

  14. The functional gene composition and metabolic potential of coral-associated microbial communities

    PubMed Central

    Zhang, Yanying; Ling, Juan; Yang, Qingsong; Wen, Chongqing; Yan, Qingyun; Sun, Hongyan; Van Nostrand, Joy D.; Shi, Zhou; Zhou, Jizhong; Dong, Junde

    2015-01-01

    The phylogenetic diversity of coral-associated microbes has been extensively examined, but some contention remains regarding whether coral-associated microbial communities are species-specific or site-specific. It is suggested that corals may associate with microbes in terms of function, although little is known about the differences in coral-associated microbial functional gene composition and metabolic potential among coral species. Here, 16S rRNA Illumina sequencing and functional gene array (GeoChip 5.0) were used to assess coral-associated microbial communities. Our results indicate that both host species and environmental variables significantly correlate with shifts in the microbial community structure and functional potential. Functional genes related to key biogeochemical cycles including carbon, nitrogen, sulfur and phosphorus cycling, metal homeostasis, organic remediation, antibiotic resistance and secondary metabolism were shown to significantly vary between and among the four study corals (Galaxea astreata, Porites lutea, Porites andrewsi and Pavona decussata). Genes specific for anammox were also detected for the first time in the coral holobiont and positively correlated with ammonium. This study reveals that variability in the functional potential of coral-associated microbial communities is largely driven by changes in environmental factors and further demonstrates the importance of linking environmental parameters with genomic data in complex environmental systems. PMID:26536917

  15. An integrated study to analyze soil microbial community structure and metabolic potential in two forest types.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Yuguang; Cong, Jing; Lu, Hui; Yang, Caiyun; Yang, Yunfeng; Zhou, Jizhong; Li, Diqiang

    2014-01-01

    Soil microbial metabolic potential and ecosystem function have received little attention owing to difficulties in methodology. In this study, we selected natural mature forest and natural secondary forest and analyzed the soil microbial community and metabolic potential combing the high-throughput sequencing and GeoChip technologies. Phylogenetic analysis based on 16S rRNA sequencing showed that one known archaeal phylum and 15 known bacterial phyla as well as unclassified phylotypes were presented in these forest soils, and Acidobacteria, Protecobacteria, and Actinobacteria were three of most abundant phyla. The detected microbial functional gene groups were related to different biogeochemical processes, including carbon degradation, carbon fixation, methane metabolism, nitrogen cycling, phosphorus utilization, sulfur cycling, etc. The Shannon index for detected functional gene probes was significantly higher (P<0.05) at natural secondary forest site. The regression analysis showed that a strong positive (P<0.05) correlation was existed between the soil microbial functional gene diversity and phylogenetic diversity. Mantel test showed that soil oxidizable organic carbon, soil total nitrogen and cellulose, glucanase, and amylase activities were significantly linked (P<0.05) to the relative abundance of corresponded functional gene groups. Variance partitioning analysis showed that a total of 81.58% of the variation in community structure was explained by soil chemical factors, soil temperature, and plant diversity. Therefore, the positive link of soil microbial structure and composition to functional activity related to ecosystem functioning was existed, and the natural secondary forest soil may occur the high microbial metabolic potential. Although the results can't directly reflect the actual microbial populations and functional activities, this study provides insight into the potential activity of the microbial community and associated feedback responses of the

  16. An Integrated Study to Analyze Soil Microbial Community Structure and Metabolic Potential in Two Forest Types

    PubMed Central

    Zhang, Yuguang; Cong, Jing; Lu, Hui; Yang, Caiyun; Yang, Yunfeng; Zhou, Jizhong; Li, Diqiang

    2014-01-01

    Soil microbial metabolic potential and ecosystem function have received little attention owing to difficulties in methodology. In this study, we selected natural mature forest and natural secondary forest and analyzed the soil microbial community and metabolic potential combing the high-throughput sequencing and GeoChip technologies. Phylogenetic analysis based on 16S rRNA sequencing showed that one known archaeal phylum and 15 known bacterial phyla as well as unclassified phylotypes were presented in these forest soils, and Acidobacteria, Protecobacteria, and Actinobacteria were three of most abundant phyla. The detected microbial functional gene groups were related to different biogeochemical processes, including carbon degradation, carbon fixation, methane metabolism, nitrogen cycling, phosphorus utilization, sulfur cycling, etc. The Shannon index for detected functional gene probes was significantly higher (P<0.05) at natural secondary forest site. The regression analysis showed that a strong positive (P<0.05) correlation was existed between the soil microbial functional gene diversity and phylogenetic diversity. Mantel test showed that soil oxidizable organic carbon, soil total nitrogen and cellulose, glucanase, and amylase activities were significantly linked (P<0.05) to the relative abundance of corresponded functional gene groups. Variance partitioning analysis showed that a total of 81.58% of the variation in community structure was explained by soil chemical factors, soil temperature, and plant diversity. Therefore, the positive link of soil microbial structure and composition to functional activity related to ecosystem functioning was existed, and the natural secondary forest soil may occur the high microbial metabolic potential. Although the results can't directly reflect the actual microbial populations and functional activities, this study provides insight into the potential activity of the microbial community and associated feedback responses of the

  17. Plants Rather than Mineral Fertilization Shape Microbial Community Structure and Functional Potential in Legacy Contaminated Soil

    PubMed Central

    Ridl, Jakub; Kolar, Michal; Strejcek, Michal; Strnad, Hynek; Stursa, Petr; Paces, Jan; Macek, Tomas; Uhlik, Ondrej

    2016-01-01

    Plant-microbe interactions are of particular importance in polluted soils. This study sought to determine how selected plants (horseradish, black nightshade and tobacco) and NPK mineral fertilization shape the structure of soil microbial communities in legacy contaminated soil and the resultant impact of treatment on the soil microbial community functional potential. To explore these objectives, we combined shotgun metagenomics and 16S rRNA gene amplicon high throughput sequencing with data analysis approaches developed for RNA-seq. We observed that the presence of any of the selected plants rather than fertilization shaped the microbial community structure, and the microbial populations of the root zone of each plant significantly differed from one another and/or from the bulk soil, whereas the effect of the fertilizer proved to be insignificant. When we compared microbial diversity in root zones versus bulk soil, we observed an increase in the relative abundance of Alphaproteobacteria, Betaproteobacteria, Gammaproteobacteria or Bacteroidetes, taxa which are commonly considered copiotrophic. Our results thus align with the theory that fast-growing, copiotrophic, microorganisms which are adapted to ephemeral carbon inputs are enriched in the vegetated soil. Microbial functional potential indicated that some genetic determinants associated with signal transduction mechanisms, defense mechanisms or amino acid transport and metabolism differed significantly among treatments. Genetic determinants of these categories tend to be overrepresented in copiotrophic organisms. The results of our study further elucidate plant-microbe relationships in a contaminated environment with possible implications for the phyto/rhizoremediation of contaminated areas. PMID:27446035

  18. Plants Rather than Mineral Fertilization Shape Microbial Community Structure and Functional Potential in Legacy Contaminated Soil.

    PubMed

    Ridl, Jakub; Kolar, Michal; Strejcek, Michal; Strnad, Hynek; Stursa, Petr; Paces, Jan; Macek, Tomas; Uhlik, Ondrej

    2016-01-01

    Plant-microbe interactions are of particular importance in polluted soils. This study sought to determine how selected plants (horseradish, black nightshade and tobacco) and NPK mineral fertilization shape the structure of soil microbial communities in legacy contaminated soil and the resultant impact of treatment on the soil microbial community functional potential. To explore these objectives, we combined shotgun metagenomics and 16S rRNA gene amplicon high throughput sequencing with data analysis approaches developed for RNA-seq. We observed that the presence of any of the selected plants rather than fertilization shaped the microbial community structure, and the microbial populations of the root zone of each plant significantly differed from one another and/or from the bulk soil, whereas the effect of the fertilizer proved to be insignificant. When we compared microbial diversity in root zones versus bulk soil, we observed an increase in the relative abundance of Alphaproteobacteria, Betaproteobacteria, Gammaproteobacteria or Bacteroidetes, taxa which are commonly considered copiotrophic. Our results thus align with the theory that fast-growing, copiotrophic, microorganisms which are adapted to ephemeral carbon inputs are enriched in the vegetated soil. Microbial functional potential indicated that some genetic determinants associated with signal transduction mechanisms, defense mechanisms or amino acid transport and metabolism differed significantly among treatments. Genetic determinants of these categories tend to be overrepresented in copiotrophic organisms. The results of our study further elucidate plant-microbe relationships in a contaminated environment with possible implications for the phyto/rhizoremediation of contaminated areas.

  19. Potential drivers of microbial community structure and function in Arctic spring snow.

    PubMed

    Maccario, Lorrie; Vogel, Timothy M; Larose, Catherine

    2014-01-01

    The Arctic seasonal snowpack can extend at times over a third of the Earth's land surface. This chemically dynamic environment interacts constantly with different environmental compartments such as atmosphere, soil and meltwater, and thus, strongly influences the entire biosphere. However, the microbial community associated with this habitat remains poorly understood. Our objective was to investigate the functional capacities, diversity and dynamics of the microorganisms in snow and to test the hypothesis that their functional signature reflects the snow environment. We applied a metagenomic approach to nine snow samples taken over 2 months during the spring season. Fungi, Bacteroidetes, and Proteobacteria were predominant in metagenomic datasets and changes in community structure were apparent throughout the field season. Functional data that strongly correlated with chemical parameters like mercury or nitrogen species supported that this variation could be explained by fluctuations in environmental conditions. Through inter-environmental comparisons we examined potential drivers of snowpack microbial community functioning. Known cold adaptations were detected in all compared environments without any apparent differences in their relative abundance, implying that adaptive mechanisms related to environmental factors other than temperature may play a role in defining the snow microbial community. Photochemical reactions and oxidative stress seem to be decisive parameters in structuring microbial communities inside Arctic snowpacks.

  20. Microbial community responses to temperature increase the potential for soil carbon losses under climate change.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hartley, Iain; Karhu, Kristiina; Auffret, Marc; Hopkins, David; Prosser, Jim; Singh, Brajesh; Subke, Jens-Arne; Wookey, Philip; Ågren, Göran

    2014-05-01

    There are concerns that global warming may stimulate decomposition rates in soils, with the extra CO2 released representing a positive feedback to climate change. However, there is growing recognition that adaptation of soil microbial communities to temperature changes may alter the potential rate of carbon release. Critically, recent studies have produced conflicting results in terms of whether the medium-term soil microbial community response to temperature reduces (compensatory thermal adaptation) or enhances (enhancing thermal adaptation) the instantaneous direct positive effects of temperature on microbial activity. This lack of understanding adds considerably to uncertainty in predictions of the magnitude and direction of carbon-cycle feedbacks to climate change. In this talk, I present results from one of the most extensive investigations ever undertaken into the role that microbial adaptation plays in controlling the temperature sensitivity of decomposition. Soils were collected from a range of ecosystem types, representing a thermal gradient from the Arctic to the Amazon. Our novel soil-cooling approach minimises issues associated with substrate depletion in warming studies, but still tests whether adaptation enhances or reduces the direct impact of temperature changes on microbial activity. We also investigated the mechanisms underlying changes in microbial respiration by quantifying changes in microbial community composition, microbial biomass, mass-specific activity, carbon-use efficiency, and enzyme activities. Our results indicate that enhancing responses are much more common than compensatory thermal acclimation, with the latter being observed in less than 10% of cases. However, identifying the mechanisms underlying enhancing and compensatory adaptation remained elusive. No consistent changes were observed in terms of mass-specific activity, biomass or enzyme activity, indicating that current theory is inadequate in explaining observed patterns

  1. Set anode potentials affect the electron fluxes and microbial community structure in propionate-fed microbial electrolysis cells.

    PubMed

    Hari, Ananda Rao; Katuri, Krishna P; Logan, Bruce E; Saikaly, Pascal E

    2016-12-09

    Anode potential has been shown to be a critical factor in the rate of acetate removal in microbial electrolysis cells (MECs), but studies with fermentable substrates and set potentials are lacking. Here, we examined the impact of three different set anode potentials (SAPs; -0.25, 0, and 0.25 V vs. standard hydrogen electrode) on the electrochemical performance, electron flux to various sinks, and anodic microbial community structure in two-chambered MECs fed with propionate. Electrical current (49-71%) and CH4 (22.9-41%) were the largest electron sinks regardless of the potentials tested. Among the three SAPs tested, 0 V showed the highest electron flux to electrical current (71 ± 5%) and the lowest flux to CH4 (22.9 ± 1.2%). In contrast, the SAP of -0.25 V had the lowest electron flux to current (49 ± 6%) and the highest flux to CH4 (41.1 ± 2%). The most dominant genera detected on the anode of all three SAPs based on 16S rRNA gene sequencing were Geobacter, Smithella and Syntrophobacter, but their relative abundance varied among the tested SAPs. Microbial community analysis implies that complete degradation of propionate in all the tested SAPs was facilitated by syntrophic interactions between fermenters and Geobacter at the anode and ferementers and hydrogenotrophic methanogens in suspension.

  2. Set anode potentials affect the electron fluxes and microbial community structure in propionate-fed microbial electrolysis cells

    PubMed Central

    Hari, Ananda Rao; Katuri, Krishna P.; Logan, Bruce E.; Saikaly, Pascal E.

    2016-01-01

    Anode potential has been shown to be a critical factor in the rate of acetate removal in microbial electrolysis cells (MECs), but studies with fermentable substrates and set potentials are lacking. Here, we examined the impact of three different set anode potentials (SAPs; −0.25, 0, and 0.25 V vs. standard hydrogen electrode) on the electrochemical performance, electron flux to various sinks, and anodic microbial community structure in two-chambered MECs fed with propionate. Electrical current (49–71%) and CH4 (22.9–41%) were the largest electron sinks regardless of the potentials tested. Among the three SAPs tested, 0 V showed the highest electron flux to electrical current (71 ± 5%) and the lowest flux to CH4 (22.9 ± 1.2%). In contrast, the SAP of −0.25 V had the lowest electron flux to current (49 ± 6%) and the highest flux to CH4 (41.1 ± 2%). The most dominant genera detected on the anode of all three SAPs based on 16S rRNA gene sequencing were Geobacter, Smithella and Syntrophobacter, but their relative abundance varied among the tested SAPs. Microbial community analysis implies that complete degradation of propionate in all the tested SAPs was facilitated by syntrophic interactions between fermenters and Geobacter at the anode and ferementers and hydrogenotrophic methanogens in suspension. PMID:27934925

  3. Microbial communities acclimate to recurring changes in soil redox potential status

    SciTech Connect

    DeAngelis, Kristen M.; Silver, Whendee; Thompson, Andrew; Firestone, Mary K.

    2010-12-03

    Rapidly fluctuating environmental conditions can significantly stress organisms, particularly when fluctuations cross thresholds of normal physiological tolerance. Redox potential fluctuations are common in humid tropical soils, and microbial community acclimation or avoidance strategies for survival will in turn shape microbial community diversity and biogeochemistry. To assess the extent to which indigenous bacterial and archaeal communities are adapted to changing in redox potential, soils were incubated under static anoxic, static oxic or fluctuating redox potential conditions, and the standing (DNA-based) and active (RNA-based) communities and biogeochemistry were determined. Fluctuating redox potential conditions permitted simultaneous CO{sub 2} respiration, methanogenesis, N{sub 2}O production and iron reduction. Exposure to static anaerobic conditions significantly changed community composition, while 4-day redox potential fluctuations did not. Using RNA: DNA ratios as a measure of activity, 285 taxa were more active under fluctuating than static conditions, compared with three taxa that were more active under static compared with fluctuating conditions. These data suggest an indigenous microbialcommunity adapted to fluctuating redox potential.

  4. Microbial Biofilm Community Variation in Flowing Habitats: Potential Utility as Bioindicators of Postmortem Submersion Intervals

    PubMed Central

    Lang, Jennifer M.; Erb, Racheal; Pechal, Jennifer L.; Wallace, John R.; McEwan, Ryan W.; Benbow, Mark Eric

    2016-01-01

    Biofilms are a ubiquitous formation of microbial communities found on surfaces in aqueous environments. These structures have been investigated as biomonitoring indicators for stream heath, and here were used for the potential use in forensic sciences. Biofilm successional development has been proposed as a method to determine the postmortem submersion interval (PMSI) of remains because there are no standard methods for estimating the PMSI and biofilms are ubiquitous in aquatic habitats. We sought to compare the development of epinecrotic (biofilms on Sus scrofa domesticus carcasses) and epilithic (biofilms on unglazed ceramic tiles) communities in two small streams using bacterial automated ribosomal intergenic spacer analysis. Epinecrotic communities were significantly different from epilithic communities even though environmental factors associated with each stream location also had a significant influence on biofilm structure. All communities at both locations exhibited significant succession suggesting that changing communities throughout time is a general characteristic of stream biofilm communities. The implications resulting from this work are that epinecrotic communities have distinctive shifts at the first and second weeks, and therefore the potential to be used in forensic applications by associating successional changes with submersion time to estimate a PMSI. The influence of environmental factors, however, indicates the lack of a successional pattern with the same organisms and a focus on functional diversity may be more applicable in a forensic context. PMID:27681897

  5. Virulence and biodegradation potential of dynamic microbial communities associated with decaying Cladophora in Great Lakes

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Chun, Chan Lan; Peller, Julie R.; Shively, Dawn; Byappanahalli, Muruleedhara N.; Whitman, Richard L.; Staley, Christopher; Zhang, Qian; Ishii, Satoshi; Sadowsky, Michael J.

    2017-01-01

    Cladophora mats that accumulate and decompose along shorelines of the Great Lakes create potential threats to the health of humans and wildlife. The decaying algae create a low oxygen and redox potential environment favoring growth and persistence of anaerobic microbial populations, including Clostridium botulinum, the causal agent of botulism in humans, birds, and other wildlife. In addition to the diverse population of microbes, a dynamic chemical environment is generated, which involves production of numerous organic and inorganic substances, many of which are believed to be toxic to the sand and aquatic biotic communities. In this study, we used 16S-rDNA-based-amplicon sequencing and microfluidic-based quantitative PCR approaches to characterize the bacterial community structure and the abundances of human pathogens associated with Cladophora at different stages (up to 90 days) of algal decay in laboratory microcosms. Oxygen levels were largely depleted after a few hours of incubation. As Cladophora decayed, the algal microbial biodiversity decreased within 24 h, and the mat transitioned from an aerobic to anaerobic environment. There were increasing abundances of enteric and pathogenic bacteria during decomposition of Cladophora, including Acinetobacter, Enterobacter, Kluyvera, Cedecea, and others. In contrast, there were no or very few sequences (< 0.07%) assigned to such groups in fresh Cladophora samples. Principal coordinate analysis indicated that the bacterial community structure was dynamic and changed significantly with decay time. Knowledge of microbial communities and chemical composition of decaying algal mats is critical to our further understanding of the role that Cladophora plays in a beach ecosystem's structure and function, including the algal role in trophic interactions. Based on these findings, public and environmental health concerns should be considered when decaying Cladophora mats accumulate Great Lakes shorelines.

  6. Virulence and biodegradation potential of dynamic microbial communities associated with decaying Cladophora in Great Lakes.

    PubMed

    Chun, Chan Lan; Peller, Julie R; Shively, Dawn; Byappanahalli, Muruleedhara N; Whitman, Richard L; Staley, Christopher; Zhang, Qian; Ishii, Satoshi; Sadowsky, Michael J

    2017-01-01

    Cladophora mats that accumulate and decompose along shorelines of the Great Lakes create potential threats to the health of humans and wildlife. The decaying algae create a low oxygen and redox potential environment favoring growth and persistence of anaerobic microbial populations, including Clostridium botulinum, the causal agent of botulism in humans, birds, and other wildlife. In addition to the diverse population of microbes, a dynamic chemical environment is generated, which involves production of numerous organic and inorganic substances, many of which are believed to be toxic to the sand and aquatic biotic communities. In this study, we used 16S-rDNA-based-amplicon sequencing and microfluidic-based quantitative PCR approaches to characterize the bacterial community structure and the abundances of human pathogens associated with Cladophora at different stages (up to 90days) of algal decay in laboratory microcosms. Oxygen levels were largely depleted after a few hours of incubation. As Cladophora decayed, the algal microbial biodiversity decreased within 24h, and the mat transitioned from an aerobic to anaerobic environment. There were increasing abundances of enteric and pathogenic bacteria during decomposition of Cladophora, including Acinetobacter, Enterobacter, Kluyvera, Cedecea, and others. In contrast, there were no or very few sequences (<0.07%) assigned to such groups in fresh Cladophora samples. Principal coordinate analysis indicated that the bacterial community structure was dynamic and changed significantly with decay time. Knowledge of microbial communities and chemical composition of decaying algal mats is critical to our further understanding of the role that Cladophora plays in a beach ecosystem's structure and function, including the algal role in trophic interactions. Based on these findings, public and environmental health concerns should be considered when decaying Cladophora mats accumulate Great Lakes shorelines.

  7. Potential of the microbial community present in an unimpacted beach sediment to remediate petroleum hydrocarbons.

    PubMed

    Almeida, C Marisa R; Reis, Izabela; Couto, M Nazaré; Bordalo, Adriano A; Mucha, Ana P

    2013-05-01

    The potential of the microbial communities present in the intertidal zone of an unimpacted beach (a beach that did not suffer any significant oil spill) to degrade hydrocarbons was investigated. For that, laboratory-based microcosms (50-ml flasks) were set up with sandy beach sediment spiked with crude oil and incubated with local seawater for 15 days in the dark. Three bioremediation treatments were tested (biostimulation (BS), autochthonous bioaugmentation (AB), and combined treatment of biostimulation + bioaugmentation (BS + AB)) and the results were compared with natural attenuation (NA). Visual inspection showed clearly an oil solubility increase (confirmed by a higher hydrocarbons concentration in supernatant solutions) for all tested treatments when compared to NA. Significant degradation of the oil, shown by different profiles of petroleum hydrocarbons, was also observed for the different treatments particularly for BS + AB. Therefore, the microbial community of this unimpacted beach sediment could respond to an oil spill, degrading hydrocarbons. But to increase the natural attenuation pace, obtained results indicated that BS + AB is an appropriate approach for the bioremediation of beaches recently impacted by an oil spill. The autochthonous microbial cultures can be obtained "before" or "after" the contamination of the target site, being inoculated into the site right after it contamination.

  8. Influence of Wastewater Discharge on the Metabolic Potential of the Microbial Community in River Sediments.

    PubMed

    Li, Dong; Sharp, Jonathan O; Drewes, Jörg E

    2016-01-01

    To reveal the variation of microbial community functions during water filtration process in river sediments, which has been utilized widely in natural water treatment systems, this study investigates the influence of municipal wastewater discharge to streams on the phylotype and metabolic potential of the microbiome in upstream and particularly various depths of downstream river sediments. Cluster analyses based on both microbial phylogenetic and functional data collectively revealed that shallow upstream sediments grouped with those from deeper subsurface downstream regions. These sediment samples were distinct from those found in shallow downstream sediments. Functional genes associated with carbohydrate, xenobiotic, and certain amino acid metabolisms were overrepresented in upstream and deep downstream samples. In contrast, the more immediate contact with wastewater discharge in shallow downstream samples resulted in an increase in the relative abundance of genes associated with nitrogen, sulfur, purine and pyrimidine metabolisms, as well as restriction-modification systems. More diverse bacterial phyla were associated with upstream and deep downstream sediments, mainly including Actinobacteria, Planctomycetes, and Firmicutes. In contrast, in shallow downstream sediments, genera affiliated with Betaproteobacteria and Gammaproteobacteria were enriched with putative functions that included ammonia and sulfur oxidation, polyphosphate accumulation, and methylotrophic bacteria. Collectively, these results highlight the enhanced capabilities of microbial communities residing in deeper stream sediments for the transformation of water contaminants and thus provide a foundation for better design of natural water treatment systems to further improve the removal of contaminants.

  9. Vikodak - A Modular Framework for Inferring Functional Potential of Microbial Communities from 16S Metagenomic Datasets

    PubMed Central

    Nagpal, Sunil; Haque, Mohammed Monzoorul; Mande, Sharmila S.

    2016-01-01

    Background The overall metabolic/functional potential of any given environmental niche is a function of the sum total of genes/proteins/enzymes that are encoded and expressed by various interacting microbes residing in that niche. Consequently, prior (collated) information pertaining to genes, enzymes encoded by the resident microbes can aid in indirectly (re)constructing/ inferring the metabolic/ functional potential of a given microbial community (given its taxonomic abundance profile). In this study, we present Vikodak—a multi-modular package that is based on the above assumption and automates inferring and/ or comparing the functional characteristics of an environment using taxonomic abundance generated from one or more environmental sample datasets. With the underlying assumptions of co-metabolism and independent contributions of different microbes in a community, a concerted effort has been made to accommodate microbial co-existence patterns in various modules incorporated in Vikodak. Results Validation experiments on over 1400 metagenomic samples have confirmed the utility of Vikodak in (a) deciphering enzyme abundance profiles of any KEGG metabolic pathway, (b) functional resolution of distinct metagenomic environments, (c) inferring patterns of functional interaction between resident microbes, and (d) automating statistical comparison of functional features of studied microbiomes. Novel features incorporated in Vikodak also facilitate automatic removal of false positives and spurious functional predictions. Conclusions With novel provisions for comprehensive functional analysis, inclusion of microbial co-existence pattern based algorithms, automated inter-environment comparisons; in-depth analysis of individual metabolic pathways and greater flexibilities at the user end, Vikodak is expected to be an important value addition to the family of existing tools for 16S based function prediction. Availability and Implementation A web implementation of Vikodak

  10. Why Microbial Communities?

    ScienceCinema

    Fredrickson, Jim (PNNL)

    2016-07-12

    The Microbial Communities Initiative is a 5-year investment by Pacific Northwest National Laboratory that integrates biological/ecological experimentation, analytical chemistry, and simulation modeling. The objective is to create transforming technologies, elucidate mechanistic forces, and develop theoretical frameworks for the analysis and predictive understanding of microbial communities. Dr. Fredrickson introduces the symposium by defining microbial communities and describing their scientific relevance as they relate to solving problems in energy, climate, and sustainability.

  11. Microbial community in the potential gas hydrate area Kaoping Canyon bearing sediment at offshore SW Taiwan

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wu, S. Y.; Hung, C. C.; Lai, S. J.; Ding, J. Y.; Lai, M. C.

    2015-12-01

    The deep sub-seafloor biosphere is among the least-understood habitats on Earth, even though the huge microbial biomass plays a potentially important role in long-term controls of global biogeochemical cycles. The research team from Taiwan, supported by the Central Geological Survey (CGS), has been demonstrated at SW offshore Taiwan that indicated this area is potential gas hydrate region. Therefore, the Gas Hydrate Master Program (GHMP) was brought in the National Energy Program-Phase II (NEP-II) to continue research and development. In this study, the microbial community structure of potential gas hydrate bearing sediments of giant piston core MD-178-10-3291 (KP12N) from the Kaoping Canyon offshore SW of Taiwan were investigated. This core was found many empty spaces and filling huge methane gas (>99.9 %) that might dissociate from solid gas hydrate. 16S rRNA gene clone libraries and phylogenetic analysis showed that the dominant members of Archaea were ANME (13 %), SAGMEG (31 %) and DSAG (20 %), and those of Bacteria were Chloroflexi (13 %), Candidate division JS1 (40 %) and Planctomycetes (15 %). Among them, ANME-3 is only distributed at the sulfate-methane interface (SMI) of 750 cmbsf, and sharing similarity with the Hydrate Ridge clone HydBeg92. ANME-1 and SAGMEG distributed below 750 cmbsf. In addition, DSAG and Candidate division JS1 are most dominant and distributed vertically at all tested depths from 150-3600 cmbsf. Combine the geochemical data and microbial phylotype distribution suggests the potential of gas hydrate bearing sediments at core MD-178-10-3291 (KP12N) from the Kaoping Canyon offshore SW of Taiwan.

  12. Interrogation of Chesapeake Bay sediment microbial communities for intrinsic alkane-utilizing potential under anaerobic conditions.

    PubMed

    Johnson, Jamie M; Wawrik, Boris; Isom, Catherine; Boling, Wilford B; Callaghan, Amy V

    2015-02-01

    Based on the transient exposure of Chesapeake Bay sediments to hydrocarbons and the metabolic versatility of known anaerobic alkane-degrading microorganisms, it was hypothesized that distinct Bay sediment communities, governed by geochemical gradients, would have intrinsic alkane-utilizing potential under sulfate-reducing and/or methanogenic conditions. Sediment cores were collected along a transect of the Bay. Community DNA was interrogated via pyrosequencing of 16S rRNA genes, PCR of anaerobic hydrocarbon activation genes, and qPCR of 16S rRNA genes and genes involved in sulfate reduction/methanogenesis. Site sediments were used to establish microcosms amended with n-hexadecane under sulfate-reducing and methanogenic conditions. Sequencing of 16S rRNA genes indicated that sediments associated with hypoxic water columns contained significantly greater proportions of Bacteria and Archaea consistent with syntrophic degradation of organic matter and methanogenesis compared to less reduced sediments. Microbial taxa frequently associated with hydrocarbon-degrading communities were found throughout the Bay, and the genetic potential for hydrocarbon metabolism was demonstrated via the detection of benzyl-(bssA) and alkylsuccinate synthase (assA) genes. Although microcosm studies did not indicate sulfidogenic alkane degradation, the data suggested that methanogenic conversion of alkanes was occurring. These findings highlight the potential role that anaerobic microorganisms could play in the bioremediation of hydrocarbons in the Bay.

  13. Potential contribution of microbial communities in technical ceramics for the improvement of rheological properties

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Moreira, Bernardino; Miller, Ana Z.; Santos, Ricardo; Monteiro, Sílvia; Dias, Diamantino; Neves, Orquídia; Dionísio, Amélia; Saiz-Jimenez, Cesareo

    2014-05-01

    Several bacterial and fungal species naturally occurring in ceramic raw materials used in construction, such as Aspergillus, Penicillium and Aureobasidium, are known to produce exopolysaccharides (EPS). These polymers excreted by the cells are of widespread occurrence and may confer unique and potentially interesting properties with potential industrial uses, such as viscosity control, gelation, and flocculation, during ceramic manufacturing. In this study, the microbial communities present in clay raw materials were identified by both cultural methods and DNA-based molecular techniques in order to appraise their potential contribution to enhance the performance of technical ceramics through the use of EPS. Mineralogical identification by X- Ray Diffraction (XRD) and Fourier Transform Infrared (FTIR) spectroscopy of the clay raw materials, as well as characterization of rheological properties of ceramic slips were also performed. Microbial EPS production and its introduction into ceramic slips will be then carried out in order to evaluate their effects on the rheological properties of the ceramic slips, powders and conformed bodies. Some positive aspects related to the use of EPS are: reduction of the environmental impact caused by synthetic organic additives, reduction of production costs, as well as the costs related with operator protection systems, gaseous effluent treatments, complex landfill, among others.

  14. Shifts in Microbial Community Structure with Changes in Cathodic Potential in Marine Sediment Microcosms

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lam, B. R.; Rowe, A. R.; Nealson, K. H.

    2014-12-01

    Microorganisms comprise more than 90% of the biomass of the ocean. Their ability to thrive and survive in a wide range of environments from oligotrophic waters to the deep subsurface stems from the great metabolic versatility that exists among them. This metabolic versatility has further expanded with the discovery of extracellular electron transport (EET). EET is the capability of microorganisms to transfer electrons to and from insoluble substrates outside of the cell. Much of what is known about EET comes from studies of model metal reducing microorganisms in the groups Shewanellaceae and Geobacteraceae. However, EET is not limited to these metal reducing microorganisms, and may play a large role in the biogeochemical cycling of several elements. We have developed an electrochemical culturing technique designed to target microorganisms with EET ability and tested these methods in marine sediments. The use of electrodes allows for greater control and quantification of electrons flowing to insoluble substrates as opposed to insoluble substrates such as minerals that are often difficult to measure. We have recently shown that poising electrodes at different redox potentials will enrich for different microbial groups and thus possible metabolisms. In marine sediment microcosms, triplicate electrodes were poised at different cathodic (electron donating) potentials (-300, -400, -500 and -600 mV) and incubated for eight weeks. Community analysis of the 16S rRNA revealed that at lower negative potentials (-500 and -600 mV), more sulfate reducing bacteria in the class Deltaproteobacteria were enriched in comparison to the communities at -300 and -400 mV being dominated by microorganisms within Alphaproteobacteria, Gammaproteobacteria, and Clostridia. This can be explained by sulfate (abundant in seawater) becoming a more energetically favorable electron acceptor with lower applied potentials. In addition, communities at higher potentials showed greater enrichment of the

  15. The polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbon degradation potential of Gulf of Mexico native coastal microbial communities after the Deepwater Horizon oil spill.

    PubMed

    Kappell, Anthony D; Wei, Yin; Newton, Ryan J; Van Nostrand, Joy D; Zhou, Jizhong; McLellan, Sandra L; Hristova, Krassimira R

    2014-01-01

    The Deepwater Horizon (DWH) blowout resulted in oil transport, including polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) to the Gulf of Mexico shoreline. The microbial communities of these shorelines are thought to be responsible for the intrinsic degradation of PAHs. To investigate the Gulf Coast beach microbial community response to hydrocarbon exposure, we examined the functional gene diversity, bacterial community composition, and PAH degradation capacity of a heavily oiled and non-oiled beach following the oil exposure. With a non-expression functional gene microarray targeting 539 gene families, we detected 28,748 coding sequences. Of these sequences, 10% were uniquely associated with the severely oil-contaminated beach and 6.0% with the non-oiled beach. There was little variation in the functional genes detected between the two beaches; however the relative abundance of functional genes involved in oil degradation pathways, including polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs), were greater in the oiled beach. The microbial PAH degradation potentials of both beaches, were tested in mesocosms. Mesocosms were constructed in glass columns using sands with native microbial communities, circulated with artificial sea water and challenged with a mixture of PAHs. The low-molecular weight PAHs, fluorene and naphthalene, showed rapid depletion in all mesocosms while the high-molecular weight benzo[α]pyrene was not degraded by either microbial community. Both the heavily oiled and the non-impacted coastal communities showed little variation in their biodegradation ability for low molecular weight PAHs. Massively-parallel sequencing of 16S rRNA genes from mesocosm DNA showed that known PAH degraders and genera frequently associated with oil hydrocarbon degradation represented a major portion of the bacterial community. The observed similar response by microbial communities from beaches with a different recent history of oil exposure suggests that Gulf Coast beach communities are

  16. The polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbon degradation potential of Gulf of Mexico native coastal microbial communities after the Deepwater Horizon oil spill

    PubMed Central

    Kappell, Anthony D.; Wei, Yin; Newton, Ryan J.; Van Nostrand, Joy D.; Zhou, Jizhong; McLellan, Sandra L.; Hristova, Krassimira R.

    2014-01-01

    The Deepwater Horizon (DWH) blowout resulted in oil transport, including polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) to the Gulf of Mexico shoreline. The microbial communities of these shorelines are thought to be responsible for the intrinsic degradation of PAHs. To investigate the Gulf Coast beach microbial community response to hydrocarbon exposure, we examined the functional gene diversity, bacterial community composition, and PAH degradation capacity of a heavily oiled and non-oiled beach following the oil exposure. With a non-expression functional gene microarray targeting 539 gene families, we detected 28,748 coding sequences. Of these sequences, 10% were uniquely associated with the severely oil-contaminated beach and 6.0% with the non-oiled beach. There was little variation in the functional genes detected between the two beaches; however the relative abundance of functional genes involved in oil degradation pathways, including polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs), were greater in the oiled beach. The microbial PAH degradation potentials of both beaches, were tested in mesocosms. Mesocosms were constructed in glass columns using sands with native microbial communities, circulated with artificial sea water and challenged with a mixture of PAHs. The low-molecular weight PAHs, fluorene and naphthalene, showed rapid depletion in all mesocosms while the high-molecular weight benzo[α]pyrene was not degraded by either microbial community. Both the heavily oiled and the non-impacted coastal communities showed little variation in their biodegradation ability for low molecular weight PAHs. Massively-parallel sequencing of 16S rRNA genes from mesocosm DNA showed that known PAH degraders and genera frequently associated with oil hydrocarbon degradation represented a major portion of the bacterial community. The observed similar response by microbial communities from beaches with a different recent history of oil exposure suggests that Gulf Coast beach communities are

  17. Transitioning from Microbiome Composition to Microbial Community Interactions: The Potential of the Metaorganism Hydra as an Experimental Model

    PubMed Central

    Deines, Peter; Bosch, Thomas C. G.

    2016-01-01

    Animals are home to complex microbial communities, which are shaped through interactions within the community, interactions with the host, and through environmental factors. The advent of high-throughput sequencing methods has led to novel insights in changing patterns of community composition and structure. However, deciphering the different types of interactions among community members, with their hosts and their interplay with their environment is still a challenge of major proportion. The emerging fields of synthetic microbial ecology and community systems biology have the potential to decrypt these complex relationships. Studying host-associated microbiota across multiple spatial and temporal scales will bridge the gap between individual microorganism studies and large-scale whole community surveys. Here, we discuss the unique potential of Hydra as an emerging experimental model in microbiome research. Through in vivo, in vitro, and in silico approaches the interaction structure of host-associated microbial communities and the effects of the host on the microbiota and its interactions can be disentangled. Research in the model system Hydra can unify disciplines from molecular genetics to ecology, opening up the opportunity to discover fundamental rules that govern microbiome community stability. PMID:27790207

  18. Degradation potential and microbial community structure of heavy oil-enriched microbial consortia from mangrove sediments in Okinawa, Japan.

    PubMed

    Bacosa, Hernando P; Suto, Koichi; Inoue, Chihiro

    2013-01-01

    Mangroves constitute valuable coastal resources that are vulnerable to oil pollution. One of the major processes to remove oil from contaminated mangrove sediment is microbial degradation. A study on heavy oil- and hydrocarbon-degrading bacterial consortia from mangrove sediments in Okinawa, Japan was performed to evaluate their capacity to biodegrade and their microbial community composition. Surface sediment samples were obtained from mangrove sites in Okinawa (Teima, Oura, and Okukubi) and enriched with heavy oil as the sole carbon and energy source. The results revealed that all enriched microbial consortia degraded more than 20% of heavy oil in 21 days. The K1 consortium from Okukubi site showed the most extensive degradative capacity after 7 and 21 days. All consortia degraded more than 50% of hexadecane but had little ability to degrade polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs). The consortia were dominated by Pseudomonas or Burkholderia. When incubated in the presence of hydrocarbon compounds, the active bacterial community shifted to favor the dominance of Pseudomonas. The K1 consortium was a superior degrader, demonstrating the highest ability to degrade aliphatic and aromatic hydrocarbon compounds; it was even able to degrade heavy oil at a concentration of 15%(w/v). The dominance and turn-over of Pseudomonas and Burkholderia in the consortia suggest an important ecological role for and relationship between these two genera in the mangrove sediments of Okinawa.

  19. The Arsenite Oxidation Potential of Native Microbial Communities from Arsenic-Rich Freshwaters.

    PubMed

    Fazi, Stefano; Crognale, Simona; Casentini, Barbara; Amalfitano, Stefano; Lotti, Francesca; Rossetti, Simona

    2016-07-01

    Microorganisms play an important role in speciation and mobility of arsenic in the environment, by mediating redox transformations of both inorganic and organic species. Since arsenite [As(III)] is more toxic than arsenate [As(V)] to the biota, the microbial driven processes of As(V) reduction and As(III) oxidation may play a prominent role in mediating the environmental impact of arsenic contamination. However, little is known about the ecology and dynamics of As(III)-oxidizing populations within native microbial communities exposed to natural high levels of As. In this study, two techniques for single cell quantification (i.e., flow cytometry, CARD-FISH) were used to analyze the structure of aquatic microbial communities across a gradient of arsenic (As) contamination in different freshwater environments (i.e., groundwaters, surface and thermal waters). Moreover, we followed the structural evolution of these communities and their capacity to oxidize arsenite, when experimentally exposed to high As(III) concentrations in experimental microcosms. Betaproteobacteria and Deltaproteobacteria were the main groups retrieved in groundwaters and surface waters, while Beta and Gammaproteobacteria dominated the bacteria community in thermal waters. At the end of microcosm incubations, the communities were able to oxidize up to 95 % of arsenite, with an increase of Alphaproteobacteria in most of the experimental conditions. Finally, heterotrophic As(III)-oxidizing strains (one Alphaproteobacteria and two Gammaproteobacteria) were isolated from As rich waters. Our findings underlined that native microbial communities from different arsenic-contaminated freshwaters can efficiently perform arsenite oxidation, thus contributing to reduce the overall As toxicity to the aquatic biota.

  20. Radiochemically-Supported Microbial Communities: A Potential Mechanism for Biocolloid Production of Importance to Actinide Transport

    SciTech Connect

    Moser, Duane P.; Hamilton-Brehm, Scott D.; Fisher, Jenny C.; Bruckner, James C.; Kruger, Brittany; Sackett, Joshua; Russell, Charles E.; Onstott, Tullis C.; Czerwinski, Ken; Zavarin, Mavrik; Campbell, James H.

    2014-06-01

    Due to the legacy of Cold War nuclear weapons testing, the Nevada National Security Site (NNSS, formerly known as the Nevada Test Site (NTS)) contains millions of Curies of radioactive contamination. Presented here is a summary of the results of the first comprehensive study of subsurface microbial communities of radioactive and nonradioactive aquifers at this site. To achieve the objectives of this project, cooperative actions between the Desert Research Institute (DRI), the Nevada Field Office of the National Nuclear Security Administration (NNSA), the Underground Test Area Activity (UGTA), and contractors such as Navarro-Interra (NI), were required. Ultimately, fluids from 17 boreholes and two water-filled tunnels were sampled (sometimes on multiple occasions and from multiple depths) from the NNSS, the adjacent Nevada Test and Training Range (NTTR), and a reference hole in the Amargosa Valley near Death Valley. The sites sampled ranged from highly-radioactive nuclear device test cavities to uncontaminated perched and regional aquifers. Specific areas sampled included recharge, intermediate, and discharge zones of a 100,000-km2 internally-draining province, known as the Death Valley Regional Flow System (DVRFS), which encompasses the entirety of the NNSS/NTTR and surrounding areas. Specific geological features sampled included: West Pahute and Ranier Mesas (recharge zone), Yucca and Frenchman Flats (transitional zone), and the Western edge of the Amargosa Valley near Death Valley (discharge zone). The original overarching question underlying the proposal supporting this work was stated as: Can radiochemically-produced substrates support indigenous microbial communities and subsequently stimulate biocolloid formation that can affect radionuclides in NNSS subsurface nuclear test/detonation sites? Radioactive and non-radioactive groundwater samples were thus characterized for physical parameters, aqueous geochemistry, and microbial communities using both DNA- and

  1. Elevated CO2 shifts the functional structure and metabolic potentials of soil microbial communities in a C4 agroecosystem

    PubMed Central

    Xiong, Jinbo; He, Zhili; Shi, Shengjing; Kent, Angela; Deng, Ye; Wu, Liyou; Van Nostrand, Joy D.; Zhou, Jizhong

    2015-01-01

    Atmospheric CO2 concentration is continuously increasing, and previous studies have shown that elevated CO2 (eCO2) significantly impacts C3 plants and their soil microbial communities. However, little is known about effects of eCO2 on the compositional and functional structure, and metabolic potential of soil microbial communities under C4 plants. Here we showed that a C4 maize agroecosystem exposed to eCO2 for eight years shifted the functional and phylogenetic structure of soil microbial communities at both soil depths (0–5 cm and 5–15 cm) using EcoPlate and functional gene array (GeoChip 3.0) analyses. The abundances of key genes involved in carbon (C), nitrogen (N) and phosphorus (P) cycling were significantly stimulated under eCO2 at both soil depths, although some differences in carbon utilization patterns were observed between the two soil depths. Consistently, CO2 was found to be the dominant factor explaining 11.9% of the structural variation of functional genes, while depth and the interaction of depth and CO2 explained 5.2% and 3.8%, respectively. This study implies that eCO2 has profound effects on the functional structure and metabolic potential/activity of soil microbial communities associated with C4 plants, possibly leading to changes in ecosystem functioning and feedbacks to global change in C4 agroecosystems. PMID:25791904

  2. In-Drift Microbial Communities

    SciTech Connect

    D. Jolley

    2000-11-09

    As directed by written work direction (CRWMS M and O 1999f), Performance Assessment (PA) developed a model for microbial communities in the engineered barrier system (EBS) as documented here. The purpose of this model is to assist Performance Assessment and its Engineered Barrier Performance Section in modeling the geochemical environment within a potential repository drift for TSPA-SR/LA, thus allowing PA to provide a more detailed and complete near-field geochemical model and to answer the key technical issues (KTI) raised in the NRC Issue Resolution Status Report (IRSR) for the Evolution of the Near Field Environment (NFE) Revision 2 (NRC 1999). This model and its predecessor (the in-drift microbial communities model as documented in Chapter 4 of the TSPA-VA Technical Basis Document, CRWMS M and O 1998a) was developed to respond to the applicable KTIs. Additionally, because of the previous development of the in-drift microbial communities model as documented in Chapter 4 of the TSPA-VA Technical Basis Document (CRWMS M and O 1998a), the M and O was effectively able to resolve a previous KTI concern regarding the effects of microbial processes on seepage and flow (NRC 1998). This document supercedes the in-drift microbial communities model as documented in Chapter 4 of the TSPA-VA Technical Basis Document (CRWMS M and O 1998a). This document provides the conceptual framework of the revised in-drift microbial communities model to be used in subsequent performance assessment (PA) analyses.

  3. Persistence of microbial communities including Pseudomonas aeruginosa in a hospital environment: a potential health hazard

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    Background The persistence of microbial communities and how they change in indoor environments is of immense interest to public health. Moreover, hospital acquired infections are significant contributors to morbidity and mortality. Evidence suggests that, in hospital environments agent transfer between surfaces causes healthcare associated infections in humans, and that surfaces are an important transmission route and may act as a reservoir for some of the pathogens. This study aimed to evaluate the diversity of microorganisms that persist on noncritical equipment and surfaces in a main hospital in Portugal, and are able to grow in selective media for Pseudomonas, and relate them with the presence of Pseudomonas aeruginosa. Results During 2 years, a total of 290 environmental samples were analyzed, in 3 different wards. The percentage of equipment in each ward that showed low contamination level varied between 22% and 38%, and more than 50% of the equipment sampled was highly contaminated. P. aeruginosa was repeatedly isolated from sinks (10 times), from the taps’ biofilm (16 times), and from the showers and bedside tables (two times). Two ERIC clones were isolated more than once. The contamination level of the different taps analyzed showed correlation with the contamination level of the hand gels support, soaps and sinks. Ten different bacteria genera were frequently isolated in the selective media for Pseudomonas. Organisms usually associated with nosocomial infections as Stenotrophomonas maltophilia, Enterococcus feacalis, Serratia nematodiphila were also repeatedly isolated on the same equipment. Conclusions The environment may act as a reservoir for at least some of the pathogens implicated in nosocomial infections. The bacterial contamination level was related to the presence of humidity on the surfaces, and tap water (biofilm) was a point of dispersion of bacterial species, including potentially pathogenic organisms. The materials of the equipment

  4. Exploring the metabolic potential of microbial communities in ultra-basic, reducing springs at The Cedars, CA, USA: Experimental evidence of microbial methanogenesis and heterotrophic acetogenesis

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kohl, Lukas; Cumming, Emily; Cox, Alison; Rietze, Amanda; Morrissey, Liam; Lang, Susan Q.; Richter, Andreas; Suzuki, Shino; Nealson, Kenneth H.; Morrill, Penny L.

    2016-04-01

    Present-day serpentinization generates groundwaters with conditions (pH > 11, Eh < -550 mV) favorable for the microbial and abiotic production of organic compounds from inorganic precursors. Elevated concentrations of methane, C2-C6 alkanes, acetate, and formate have been detected at these sites, but the microbial or abiotic origin of these compounds remains unclear. While geochemical data indicate that methane at most sites of present-day serpentinization is abiogenic, the stable carbon, hydrogen, and clumped isotope data as well as the hydrocarbon gas composition from The Cedars, CA, USA, are consistent with a microbial origin for methane. However, there is no direct evidence of methanogenesis at this site of serpentinization. We report on laboratory experiments in which the microbial communities in fluids and sediments from The Cedars were incubated with 13C labeled substrates. Increasing methane concentrations and the incorporation of 13C into methane in live experiments, but not in killed controls, demonstrated that methanogens converted methanol, formate, acetate (methyl group), and bicarbonate to methane. The apparent fractionation between methane and potential substrates (α13CCH4-CO2(g) = 1.059 to 1.105, α13CCH4-acetate = 1.042 to 1.119) indicated that methanogenesis was dominated by the carbonate reduction pathway. Increasing concentrations of volatile organic acid anions indicated microbial acetogenesis. α13CCO2(g)-acetate values (0.999 to 1.000), however, were inconsistent with autotrophic acetogenesis, thus suggesting that acetate was produced through fermentation. This is the first study to show direct evidence of microbial methanogenesis and acetogenesis by the native microbial community at a site of present-day serpentinization.

  5. SEAGRASS RHIZOSPHERE MICROBIAL COMMUNITIES

    EPA Science Inventory

    Devereux, Richard. 2005. Seagrass Rhizosphere Microbial Communities. In: Interactions Between Macro- and Microorganisms in Marine Sediments. E. Kristense, J.E. Kostka and R.H. Haese, Editors. American Geophysical Union, Washington, DC. p199-216. (ERL,GB 1213).

    Seagrasses ...

  6. Radiochemically-supported microbial communities. A potential mechanism for biocolloid production of importance to actinide transport

    SciTech Connect

    Moser, Duane P.; Hamilton-Brehm, Scott D.; Fisher, Jenny C.; Bruckner, James C.; Kruger, Brittany; Sackett, Joshua; Russell, Charles E.; Onstott, Tullis C.; Czerwinski, Ken; Zavarin, Mavrik; Campbell, James H.

    2015-03-20

    The work described here revealed the presence of diverse microbial communities located across 19 subsurface sites at the NNSS/NTTR and nearby locations. Overall, the diversity of microorganisms was high for subsurface habitats and variable between sites. As of this writing, preparations are being made to combine the Illumina sequences and 16S rRNA clone libraries with other non-NNSS/NTTR well sites of Southern Nevada Regional Flow System for a publication manuscript describing our very broad landscape scale survey of subsurface microbial diversity. Isolates DRI-13 and DRI-14 remain to be fully characterized and named in accordance with the conventions established by Bergey's Manual of Systematic Bacteriology. In preparation to be published, these microorganisms will be submitted to the American Type Culture Collection (ATCC) and the Deutsche Sammlung von Mikroorganismen und Zellkulturen GmbH (DSMZ).It is anticipated that the data resulting from this study in combination with other data sets that will allow us to produce a number of publications that will be impactful to the subsurface microbiology community.

  7. Microbial communities associated with human decomposition and their potential use as postmortem clocks.

    PubMed

    Finley, Sheree J; Benbow, M Eric; Javan, Gulnaz T

    2015-05-01

    Most forensic research that is used to better understand how to estimate the postmortem interval (PMI) entails the study of the physiochemical characteristics of decomposition and the effects that environmental factors have on the decomposition process. Forensic entomology exploits the life cycles of arthropods like Diptera (blow flies or flesh flies) and Coleoptera (beetles) deposited on the decaying carcass to determine PMI. Forensic taphonomy, from the Greek word taphos meaning burial, studies the creation of the fossils of decomposed cadavers to ascertain information as to the nature and time of death. Compared to other areas of taphonomy, there have been relatively few forensic science studies that have investigated the impact of human decomposition on the microbial changes occurring on or in a corpse or in the soil communities underneath a body. Such research may facilitate the critical determination of PMI. Therefore, the scope of this review is to provide a concise summary of the current progress in the newly emerging field of microbial diversity and the next-generation metagenomic sequencing approaches for assessing these communities in humans and in the soil beneath decomposing human.

  8. Connecting Metabolic Potential with Thermodynamic Reality: Lithotrophic Microbial Communities of the Frasassi Cave System

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    McCauley, R. L.; Macalady, J. L.; Schaperdoth, I.

    2013-12-01

    If Martian life evolved during the Noachian period, it likely would have retreated to liquid water refuges where redox chemistry provided metabolically viable substrates. Present-day Mars appears to have such a refuge with data suggesting that liquid water may persist in the subsurface, however limited data is available with regards to subsurface Martian geochemistry and hydrogeology. On Earth, we find microbial communities thriving in subsurface environments utilizing a multitude of lithoautotrophic metabolisms. The Frasassi cave system in Italy hosts many such lithotrophic microbial communities, which are isolated from surface carbon, sunlight, and oxygen similar to possible Martian microbial populations. By studying the community structure, geochemistry and thermodynamics of the system, as well as the metabolic capabilities using metagenomics, we hope to discover microbes are capable of thriving in so-called 'energy-limited' environments and inform the search for life in the solar system. Two subsurface cave lakes in the Frasassi cave system, Lago Infinito and Lago dell'Orsa, have anoxic waters that host rope-like biofilm communities dominated by Deltaproteobacteria, Chloroflexi, and Planctomycetes clades. Thermodynamic calculations based on in situ geochemistry of waters surrounding the biofilms suggest very few metabolisms are energetically-feasible including: 1) anaerobic oxidation of methane (AOM) coupled with sulfate reduction 2) anaerobic ammonia oxidation (anammox) coupled with sulfate reduction 3) methanogenesis (Lago dell'Orsa only) 4) chemotrophic sulfate reduction AOM and anammox were only recently discovered and appear to have low energy yields associated with slow growth rates. AOM coupled with sulfate reduction has been shown to occur in a syntrophy between sulfate-reducing bacteria (SRB) and methanotrophic Archaea. However, these rope-like biofilms have a small (<10%) Archaeal population, which are not closely related to the syntrophic

  9. HIV-associated changes in the enteric microbial community: potential role in loss of homeostasis and development of systemic inflammation

    PubMed Central

    Gootenberg, David B.; Paer, Jeffrey M.; Luevano, Jesus-Mario; Kwon, Douglas S.

    2017-01-01

    Purpose of review Despite HIV therapy advances, average life expectancy in HIV-infected individuals on effective treatment is significantly decreased relative to uninfected persons, largely because of increased incidence of inflammation-related diseases, such as cardiovascular disease and renal dysfunction. The enteric microbial community could potentially cause this inflammation, as HIV-driven destruction of gastrointestinal CD4+ T cells may disturb the microbiota–mucosal immune system balance, disrupting the stable gut microbiome and leading to further deleterious host outcomes. Recent findings Varied enteric microbiome changes have been reported during HIV infection, but unifying patterns have emerged. Community diversity is decreased, similar to pathologies such as inflammatory bowel disease, obesity, and Clostridium difficile infection. Many taxa frequently enriched in HIV-infected individuals, such as Enterobacteriaceae and Erysipelotrichaceae, have pathogenic potential, whereas depleted taxa, such as Bacteroidaceae and Ruminococcaceae, are more linked with anti-inflammatory properties and maintenance of gut homeostasis. The gut viral community in HIV has been found to contain a greater abundance of pathogenesis-associated Adenoviridae and Anelloviridae. These bacterial and viral changes correlate with increased systemic inflammatory markers, such as serum sCD14, sCD163, and IL-6. Summary Enteric microbial community changes may contribute to chronic HIV pathogenesis, but more investigation is necessary, especially in the developing world population with the greatest HIV burden (Video, Supplemental Digital Content 1, which includes the authors’ summary of the importance of the work). PMID:27922852

  10. Glycoside Hydrolases across Environmental Microbial Communities

    PubMed Central

    Berlemont, Renaud

    2016-01-01

    Across many environments microbial glycoside hydrolases support the enzymatic processing of carbohydrates, a critical function in many ecosystems. Little is known about how the microbial composition of a community and the potential for carbohydrate processing relate to each other. Here, using 1,934 metagenomic datasets, we linked changes in community composition to variation of potential for carbohydrate processing across environments. We were able to show that each ecosystem-type displays a specific potential for carbohydrate utilization. Most of this potential was associated with just 77 bacterial genera. The GH content in bacterial genera is best described by their taxonomic affiliation. Across metagenomes, fluctuations of the microbial community structure and GH potential for carbohydrate utilization were correlated. Our analysis reveals that both deterministic and stochastic processes contribute to the assembly of complex microbial communities. PMID:27992426

  11. The microbial communities and potential greenhouse gas production in boreal acid sulphate, non-acid sulphate, and reedy sulphidic soils.

    PubMed

    Šimek, Miloslav; Virtanen, Seija; Simojoki, Asko; Chroňáková, Alica; Elhottová, Dana; Krištůfek, Václav; Yli-Halla, Markku

    2014-01-01

    Acid sulphate (AS) soils along the Baltic coasts contain significant amounts of organic carbon and nitrogen in their subsoils. The abundance, composition, and activity of microbial communities throughout the AS soil profile were analysed. The data from a drained AS soil were compared with those from a drained non-AS soil and a pristine wetland soil from the same region. Moreover, the potential production of methane, carbon dioxide, and nitrous oxide from the soils was determined under laboratory conditions. Direct microscopic counting, glucose-induced respiration (GIR), whole cell hybridisation, and extended phospholipid fatty acid (PLFA) analysis confirmed the presence of abundant microbial communities in the topsoil and also in the deepest Cg2 horizon of the AS soil. The patterns of microbial counts, biomass and activity in the profile of the AS soil and partly also in the non-AS soil therefore differed from the general tendency of gradual decreases in soil profiles. High respiration in the deepest Cg2 horizon of the AS soil (5.66 μg Cg(-1)h(-1), as compared to 2.71 μg Cg(-1)h(-1) in a top Ap horizon) is unusual but reasonable given the large amount of organic carbon in this horizon. Nitrous oxide production peaked in the BCgc horizon of the AS and in the BC horizon of the non-AS soil, but the peak value was ten-fold higher in the AS soil than in the non-AS soil (82.3 vs. 8.6 ng Ng(-1)d(-1)). The data suggest that boreal AS soils on the Baltic coast contain high microbial abundance and activity. This, together with the abundant carbon and total and mineral nitrogen in the deep layers of AS soils, may result in substantial gas production. Consequently, high GHG emissions could occur, for example, when the generally high water table is lowered because of arable farming.

  12. Abundances and potential activities of nitrogen cycling microbial communities along a chronosequence of a glacier forefield

    PubMed Central

    Brankatschk, Robert; Töwe, Stefanie; Kleineidam, Kristina; Schloter, Michael; Zeyer, Josef

    2011-01-01

    Glacier forefields are ideal ecosystems to study the development of nutrient cycles as well as single turnover processes during soil development. In this study, we examined the ecology of the microbial nitrogen (N) cycle in bulk soil samples from a chronosequence of the Damma glacier, Switzerland. Major processes of the N cycle were reconstructed on the genetic as well as the potential enzyme activity level at sites of the chronosequence that have been ice-free for 10, 50, 70, 120 and 2000 years. In our study, we focused on N fixation, mineralization (chitinolysis and proteolysis), nitrification and denitrification. Our results suggest that mineralization, mainly the decomposition of deposited organic material, was the main driver for N turnover in initial soils, that is, ice-free for 10 years. Transient soils being ice-free for 50 and 70 years were characterized by a high abundance of N fixing microorganisms. In developed soils, ice-free for 120 and 2000 years, significant rates of nitrification and denitrification were measured. Surprisingly, copy numbers of the respective functional genes encoding the corresponding enzymes were already high in the initial phase of soil development. This clearly indicates that the genetic potential is not the driver for certain functional traits in the initial phase of soil formation but rather a well-balanced expression of the respective genes coding for selected functions. PMID:21124490

  13. The effect of storage conditions on microbial community composition and biomethane potential in a biogas starter culture.

    PubMed

    Hagen, Live Heldal; Vivekanand, Vivekanand; Pope, Phillip B; Eijsink, Vincent G H; Horn, Svein J

    2015-07-01

    A new biogas process is initiated by adding a microbial community, typically in the form of a sample collected from a functional biogas plant. This inoculum has considerable impact on the initial performance of a biogas reactor, affecting parameters such as stability, biogas production yields and the overall efficiency of the anaerobic digestion process. In this study, we have analyzed changes in the microbial composition and performance of an inoculum during storage using barcoded pyrosequencing of bacterial and archaeal 16S ribosomal RNA (rRNA) genes, and determination of the biomethane potential, respectively. The inoculum was stored at room temperature, 4 and -20 °C for up to 11 months and cellulose was used as a standard substrate to test the biomethane potential. Storage up to 1 month resulted in similar final methane yields, but the rate of methane production was reduced by storage at -20 °C. Longer storage times resulted in reduced methane yields and slower production kinetics for all storage conditions, with room temperature and frozen samples consistently giving the best and worst performance, respectively. Both storage time and temperature affected the microbial community composition and methanogenic activity. In particular, fluctuations in the relative abundance of Bacteroidetes were observed. Interestingly, a shift from hydrogenotrophic methanogens to methanogens with the capacity to perform acetoclastic methanogensis was observed upon prolonged storage. In conclusion, this study suggests that biogas inocula may be stored up to 1 month with low loss of methanogenic activity, and identifies bacterial and archaeal species that are affected by the storage.

  14. Electrochemical response of a biofilm community to changes in electron-acceptor redox potential elucidated using microbial fuel cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Arbour, T.; Wrighton, K. C.; Mullin, S. W.; Luef, B.; Gilbert, B.; Banfield, J. F.

    2012-12-01

    Currently, we have limited insight into how mineral properties affect dissimilatory metal-reducing bacteria (DMRB) or the microbial communities that contain them. Advances in our understanding of DMRB metabolism have been achieved using microbial fuel cells (MFCs), which exploit the ability of these organisms to transfer electrons extracellularly. By replacing the mineral electron acceptor with a conductive electrode under potentiostat control, the activity of microorganisms capable of interfacial electron transfer can be quantified by the current flowing through the electrode and related to the thermodynamics of respiration. We seek to understand how communities and their individual members respond to changes in mineralogy, and expect mineral redox potential to be a primary control. The ability to precisely control the redox potential of the electron-accepting anodic electrode is our primary motivation for using MFCs. We inoculated duplicate MFCs containing 10 mM acetate in phosphate buffered media with a slurry of subsurface sediment and groundwater obtained from the Integrated Field-Scale Research Challenge Site at Rifle, CO. Electroactive biofilms were established on graphite anodes poised at a favorable potential (0.0 V vs. SHE) before poising at -0.2 V—a potential representative of natural iron reduction. The current was stable across both anodes over more than 100 days of operation, and the percentage of the electrons in acetate recovered as current ("Coulombic efficiency") was typically 70 to >90%. Current density reached 0.4 A/m2 at -0.2 V, to a max of over 1.0 A/m2 at or above ~0.0 V (based on geometric electrode surface area). Media exchanges and biofilm cyclic voltammetry (CV) experiments indicate that electrode-attached microbial communities were responsible for primary electron transfer. Cryo-electron and confocal fluorescence microscopies of the biofilm reveal numerous morphologies of viable microorganisms that are currently being characterized

  15. Defining the Functional Potential and Active Community Members of a Sediment Microbial Community in a High-Arctic Hypersaline Subzero Spring

    PubMed Central

    Lay, Chih-Ying; Mykytczuk, Nadia C. S.; Yergeau, Étienne; Lamarche-Gagnon, Guillaume; Greer, Charles W.

    2013-01-01

    The Lost Hammer (LH) Spring is the coldest and saltiest terrestrial spring discovered to date and is characterized by perennial discharges at subzero temperatures (−5°C), hypersalinity (salinity, 24%), and reducing (≈−165 mV), microoxic, and oligotrophic conditions. It is rich in sulfates (10.0%, wt/wt), dissolved H2S/sulfides (up to 25 ppm), ammonia (≈381 μM), and methane (11.1 g day−1). To determine its total functional and genetic potential and to identify its active microbial components, we performed metagenomic analyses of the LH Spring outlet microbial community and pyrosequencing analyses of the cDNA of its 16S rRNA genes. Reads related to Cyanobacteria (19.7%), Bacteroidetes (13.3%), and Proteobacteria (6.6%) represented the dominant phyla identified among the classified sequences. Reconstruction of the enzyme pathways responsible for bacterial nitrification/denitrification/ammonification and sulfate reduction appeared nearly complete in the metagenomic data set. In the cDNA profile of the LH Spring active community, ammonia oxidizers (Thaumarchaeota), denitrifiers (Pseudomonas spp.), sulfate reducers (Desulfobulbus spp.), and other sulfur oxidizers (Thermoprotei) were present, highlighting their involvement in nitrogen and sulfur cycling. Stress response genes for adapting to cold, osmotic stress, and oxidative stress were also abundant in the metagenome. Comparison of the composition of the functional community of the LH Spring to metagenomes from other saline/subzero environments revealed a close association between the LH Spring and another Canadian high-Arctic permafrost environment, particularly in genes related to sulfur metabolism and dormancy. Overall, this study provides insights into the metabolic potential and the active microbial populations that exist in this hypersaline cryoenvironment and contributes to our understanding of microbial ecology in extreme environments. PMID:23563939

  16. Microbial Communities in Sediments of Lagos Lagoon, Nigeria: Elucidation of Community Structure and Potential Impacts of Contamination by Municipal and Industrial Wastes

    PubMed Central

    Obi, Chioma C.; Adebusoye, Sunday A.; Ugoji, Esther O.; Ilori, Mathew O.; Amund, Olukayode O.; Hickey, William J.

    2016-01-01

    Estuarine sediments are significant repositories of anthropogenic contaminants, and thus knowledge of the impacts of pollution upon microbial communities in these environments is important to understand potential effects on estuaries as a whole. The Lagos lagoon (Nigeria) is one of Africa’s largest estuarine ecosystems, and is impacted by hydrocarbon pollutants and other industrial and municipal wastes. The goal of this study was to elucidate microbial community structure in Lagos lagoon sediments to identify groups that may be adversely affected by pollution, and those that may serve as degraders of environmental contaminants, especially polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs). Sediment samples were collected from sites that ranged in types and levels of anthropogenic impacts. The sediments were characterized for a range of physicochemical properties, and microbial community structure was determined by Illumina sequencing of the 16S rRNA genes. Microbial diversity (species richness and evenness) in the Apapa and Eledu sediments was reduced compared to that of the Ofin site, and communities of both of the former two were dominated by a single operational taxonomic unit (OTU) assigned to the family Helicobacteraceae (Epsilonproteobacteria). In the Ofin community, Epsilonproteobacteria were minor constituents, while the major groups were Cyanobacteria, Bacteroidetes, and Firmicutes, which were all minor in the Apapa and Eledu sediments. Sediment oxygen demand (SOD), a broad indicator of contamination, was identified by multivariate analyses as strongly correlated with variation in alpha diversity. Environmental variables that explained beta diversity patterns included SOD, as well as levels of naphthalene, acenaphthylene, cobalt, cadmium, total organic matter, or nitrate. Of 582 OTU identified, abundance of 167 was significantly correlated (false discovery rate q≤ 0.05) to environmental variables. The largest group of OTU correlated with PAH levels were PAH

  17. Potential for horizontal gene transfer in microbial communities of the terrestrial subsurface.

    PubMed

    Coombs, Jonna M

    2009-01-01

    The deep terrestrial subsurface is a vast, largely unexplored environment that is oligotrophic, highly heterogeneous, and may contain extremes of both physical and chemical factors. In spite of harsh conditions, subsurface studies at several widely distributed geographic sites have revealed diverse communities of viable organisms, which have provided evidence of low but detectable metabolic activity. Although much of the terrestrial subsurface may be considered to be distant and isolated, the concept of horizontal gene transfer (HGT) in this environment has far-reaching implications for bioremediation efforts and groundwater quality, industrial harvesting of subsurface natural resources such as petroleum, and accurate assessment of the risks associated with DNA release and transport from genetically modified organisms. This chapter will explore what is known about some of the major mechanisms of HGT, and how the information gained from surface organisms might apply to conditions in the terrestrial subsurface. Evidence for the presence of mobile elements in subsurface bacteria and limited retrospective studies examining genetic signatures of potential past gene transfer events will be discussed.

  18. Environmental Microbial Community Proteomics: Status, Challenges and Perspectives

    PubMed Central

    Wang, Da-Zhi; Kong, Ling-Fen; Li, Yuan-Yuan; Xie, Zhang-Xian

    2016-01-01

    Microbial community proteomics, also termed metaproteomics, is an emerging field within the area of microbiology, which studies the entire protein complement recovered directly from a complex environmental microbial community at a given point in time. Although it is still in its infancy, microbial community proteomics has shown its powerful potential in exploring microbial diversity, metabolic potential, ecological function and microbe-environment interactions. In this paper, we review recent advances achieved in microbial community proteomics conducted in diverse environments, such as marine and freshwater, sediment and soil, activated sludge, acid mine drainage biofilms and symbiotic communities. The challenges facing microbial community proteomics are also discussed, and we believe that microbial community proteomics will greatly enhance our understanding of the microbial world and its interactions with the environment. PMID:27527164

  19. Flat laminated microbial mat communities

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Franks, Jonathan; Stolz, John F.

    2009-10-01

    Flat laminated microbial mats are complex microbial ecosystems that inhabit a wide range of environments (e.g., caves, iron springs, thermal springs and pools, salt marshes, hypersaline ponds and lagoons, methane and petroleum seeps, sea mounts, deep sea vents, arctic dry valleys). Their community structure is defined by physical (e.g., light quantity and quality, temperature, density and pressure) and chemical (e.g., oxygen, oxidation/reduction potential, salinity, pH, available electron acceptors and donors, chemical species) parameters as well as species interactions. The main primary producers may be photoautotrophs (e.g., cyanobacteria, purple phototrophs, green phototrophs) or chemolithoautophs (e.g., colorless sulfur oxidizing bacteria). Anaerobic phototrophy may predominate in organic rich environments that support high rates of respiration. These communities are dynamic systems exhibiting both spatial and temporal heterogeneity. They are characterized by steep gradients with microenvironments on the submillimeter scale. Diel oscillations in the physical-chemical profile (e.g., oxygen, hydrogen sulfide, pH) and species distribution are typical for phototroph-dominated communities. Flat laminated microbial mats are often sites of robust biogeochemical cycling. In addition to well-established modes of metabolism for phototrophy (oxygenic and non-oxygenic), respiration (both aerobic and anaerobic), and fermentation, novel energetic pathways have been discovered (e.g., nitrate reduction couple to the oxidation of ammonia, sulfur, or arsenite). The application of culture-independent techniques (e.g., 16S rRNA clonal libraries, metagenomics), continue to expand our understanding of species composition and metabolic functions of these complex ecosystems.

  20. Off-site impacts of agricultural composting: role of terrestrially derived organic matter in structuring aquatic microbial communities and their metabolic potential.

    PubMed

    Pommier, Thomas; Merroune, Asmaa; Bettarel, Yvan; Got, Patrice; Janeau, Jean-Louis; Jouquet, Pascal; Thu, Thuy D; Toan, Tran D; Rochelle-Newall, Emma

    2014-12-01

    While considered as sustainable and low-cost agricultural amendments, the impacts of organic fertilizers on downstream aquatic microbial communities remain poorly documented. We investigated the quantity and quality of the dissolved organic matter leaching from agricultural soil amended with compost, vermicompost or biochar and assessed their effects on lake microbial communities, in terms of viral and bacterial abundances, community structure and metabolic potential. The addition of compost and vermicompost significantly increased the amount of dissolved organic carbon in the leachate compared with soil alone. Leachates from these additions, either with or without biochar, were highly bioavailable to aquatic microbial communities, although reducing the metabolic potential of the community and harbouring more specific communities. Although not affecting bacterial richness or taxonomic distributions, the specific addition of biochar affected the original lake bacterial communities, resulting in a strongly different community. This could be partly explained by viral burst and converging bacterial abundances throughout the samples. These results underline the necessity to include off-site impacts of agricultural amendments when considering their cascading effect on downstream aquatic ecosystems.

  1. Characterization of the microbial community and polyketide biosynthetic potential in the palmerolide-producing tunicate Synoicum adareanum.

    PubMed

    Riesenfeld, Christian S; Murray, Alison E; Baker, Bill J

    2008-11-01

    Palmerolide A (1) is a macrolide isolated from the Antarctic tunicate Synoicum adareanum that is of interest due to its potential as an antimelanoma drug. Biosynthesis is predicted to occur via a hybrid PKS-NRPS pathway within S. adareanum, but the identity of the palmerolide-producing organism (host or putative host-associated microorganism) has not been established. Microscopic observation revealed a dense microbial community inside the tunicate, and evidence from 16S rRNA gene DGGE profiles and clone library sequences suggests that the bacterial community has moderate phylogenetic complexity. The alpha and gamma classes of Proteobacteria account for ∼75% of the cloned 16S rRNA genes, and the majority of these sequences are affiliated with the genera Pseudovibrio and Microbulbifer. DNA sequences encoding type I PKS ketosynthase (KS) domains were detected by PCR. The S. adareanum KS sequences, which affiliate with the trans-AT clade, are similar to portions of PKS proteins that lack integrated acyltransferase domains in pathways for generating bioactive polyketide compounds, including bryostatin, leinamycin, and pederin.

  2. Nitrous oxide reduction genetic potential from the microbial community of an intermittently aerated partial nitritation SBR treating mature landfill leachate.

    PubMed

    Gabarró, J; Hernández-Del Amo, E; Gich, F; Ruscalleda, M; Balaguer, M D; Colprim, J

    2013-12-01

    This study investigates the microbial community dynamics in an intermittently aerated partial nitritation (PN) SBR treating landfill leachate, with emphasis to the nosZ encoding gene. PN was successfully achieved and high effluent stability and suitability for a later anammox reactor was ensured. Anoxic feedings allowed denitrifying activity in the reactor. The influent composition influenced the mixed liquor suspended solids concentration leading to variations of specific operational rates. The bacterial community was low diverse due to the stringent conditions in the reactor, and was mostly enriched by members of Betaproteobacteria and Bacteroidetes as determined by 16S rRNA sequencing from excised DGGE melting types. The qPCR analysis for nitrogen cycle-related enzymes (amoA, nirS, nirK and nosZ) demonstrated high amoA enrichment but being nirS the most relatively abundant gene. nosZ was also enriched from the seed sludge. Linear correlation was found mostly between nirS and the organic specific rates. Finally, Bacteroidetes sequenced in this study by 16S rRNA DGGE were not sequenced for nosZ DGGE, indicating that not all denitrifiers deal with complete denitrification. However, nosZ encoding gene bacteria was found during the whole experiment indicating the genetic potential to reduce N2O.

  3. Characterization of Airborne Microbial Communities at a High-Elevation Site and Their Potential To Act as Atmospheric Ice Nuclei▿

    PubMed Central

    Bowers, Robert M.; Lauber, Christian L.; Wiedinmyer, Christine; Hamady, Micah; Hallar, Anna G.; Fall, Ray; Knight, Rob; Fierer, Noah

    2009-01-01

    Bacteria and fungi are ubiquitous in the atmosphere. The diversity and abundance of airborne microbes may be strongly influenced by atmospheric conditions or even influence atmospheric conditions themselves by acting as ice nucleators. However, few comprehensive studies have described the diversity and dynamics of airborne bacteria and fungi based on culture-independent techniques. We document atmospheric microbial abundance, community composition, and ice nucleation at a high-elevation site in northwestern Colorado. We used a standard small-subunit rRNA gene Sanger sequencing approach for total microbial community analysis and a bacteria-specific 16S rRNA bar-coded pyrosequencing approach (4,864 sequences total). During the 2-week collection period, total microbial abundances were relatively constant, ranging from 9.6 × 105 to 6.6 × 106 cells m−3 of air, and the diversity and composition of the airborne microbial communities were also relatively static. Bacteria and fungi were nearly equivalent, and members of the proteobacterial groups Burkholderiales and Moraxellaceae (particularly the genus Psychrobacter) were dominant. These taxa were not always the most abundant in freshly fallen snow samples collected at this site. Although there was minimal variability in microbial abundances and composition within the atmosphere, the number of biological ice nuclei increased significantly during periods of high relative humidity. However, these changes in ice nuclei numbers were not associated with changes in the relative abundances of the most commonly studied ice-nucleating bacteria. PMID:19502432

  4. Environmental Regulation of Microbial Community Structure

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Bebout, Leslie; DesMarais, D.; Heyenga, G.; Nelson, F.; DeVincenzi, D. (Technical Monitor)

    2002-01-01

    Most naturally occurring microbes live in complex microbial communities consisting of thousands of phylotypes of microorganisms living in close proximity. Each of these draws nutrients from the environment and releases metabolic waste products, which may in turn serve as substrates for other microbial groups. Gross environmental changes, such as irradiance level, hydrodynamic flow regime, temperature or water chemistry can directly affect the productivity of some community members, which in turn will affect other dependent microbial populations and rate processes. As a first step towards the development of "standard" natural communities of microorganisms for a variety of potential NASA applications, we are measuring biogeochemical cycling in artificially structured communities of microorganisms, created using natural microbial mat communities as inoculum. The responses of these artificially assembled communities of microorganisms to controlled shifts in ecosystem incubation conditions is being determined. This research requires close linking of environmental monitoring, with community composition in a closed and controlled incubation setting. We are developing new incubation chamber designs to allow for this integrated approach to examine the interplay between environmental conditions, microbial community composition and biogeochemical processes.

  5. Metal concentrations in stream biofilm and sediments and their potential to explain biofilm microbial community structure.

    PubMed

    Ancion, Pierre-Yves; Lear, Gavin; Dopheide, Andrew; Lewis, Gillian D

    2013-02-01

    Concentrations of metals associated with sediments have traditionally been analysed to assess the extent of heavy metal contamination in freshwater environments. Stream biofilms present an alternative medium for this assessment which may be more relevant to the risk incurred by stream ecosystems as they are intensively grazed by aquatic organisms at a higher trophic level. Therefore, we investigated zinc, copper and lead concentrations in biofilms and sediments of 23 stream sites variously impacted by urbanisation. Simultaneously, biofilm bacterial and ciliate protozoan community structure was analysed by Automated Ribosomal Intergenic Spacer Analysis and Terminal Restriction Fragment Length Polymorphism, respectively. Statistical analysis revealed that biofilm associated metals explained a greater proportion of the variations observed in bacterial and ciliate communities than did sediment associated-metals. This study suggests that the analysis of metal concentrations in biofilms provide a good assessment of detrimental effects of metal contaminants on aquatic biota.

  6. High-resolution phylogenetic microbial community profiling

    PubMed Central

    Singer, Esther; Bushnell, Brian; Coleman-Derr, Devin; Bowman, Brett; Bowers, Robert M; Levy, Asaf; Gies, Esther A; Cheng, Jan-Fang; Copeland, Alex; Klenk, Hans-Peter; Hallam, Steven J; Hugenholtz, Philip; Tringe, Susannah G; Woyke, Tanja

    2016-01-01

    Over the past decade, high-throughput short-read 16S rRNA gene amplicon sequencing has eclipsed clone-dependent long-read Sanger sequencing for microbial community profiling. The transition to new technologies has provided more quantitative information at the expense of taxonomic resolution with implications for inferring metabolic traits in various ecosystems. We applied single-molecule real-time sequencing for microbial community profiling, generating full-length 16S rRNA gene sequences at high throughput, which we propose to name PhyloTags. We benchmarked and validated this approach using a defined microbial community. When further applied to samples from the water column of meromictic Sakinaw Lake, we show that while community structures at the phylum level are comparable between PhyloTags and Illumina V4 16S rRNA gene sequences (iTags), variance increases with community complexity at greater water depths. PhyloTags moreover allowed less ambiguous classification. Last, a platform-independent comparison of PhyloTags and in silico generated partial 16S rRNA gene sequences demonstrated significant differences in community structure and phylogenetic resolution across multiple taxonomic levels, including a severe underestimation in the abundance of specific microbial genera involved in nitrogen and methane cycling across the Lake's water column. Thus, PhyloTags provide a reliable adjunct or alternative to cost-effective iTags, enabling more accurate phylogenetic resolution of microbial communities and predictions on their metabolic potential. PMID:26859772

  7. Microbial Community-Level Physiological Profiles (CLPP) and herbicide mineralization potential in groundwater affected by agricultural land use

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Janniche, Gry Sander; Spliid, Henrik; Albrechtsen, Hans-Jørgen

    2012-10-01

    Diffuse groundwater pollution from agricultural land use may impact the microbial groundwater community, which was investigated as Community-Level Physiological Profiles (CLPP) using EcoPlate™. Water was sampled from seven piezometers and a spring in a small agricultural catchment with diffuse herbicide and nitrate pollution. Based on the Shannon-Wiener and Simpson's diversity indices the diversity in the microbial communities was high. The response from the EcoPlates™ showed which substrates support groundwater bacteria, and all 31 carbon sources were utilized by organisms from at least one water sample. However, only nine carbon sources were utilized by all water samples: D-Mannitol, N-acetyl-D-glucosamine, putrescine, D-galacturonic acid, itaconic acid, 4-hydroxy benzoic acid, tween 40, tween 80, and L-asparagine. In all water samples the microorganisms preferred D-mannitol, D-galacturonic acid, tween 40, and 4-hydroxy benzoic acid as substrates, whereas none preferred 2-hydroxy benzoic acid, α-D-lactose, D,L-α-glycerol phosphate, α-ketobutyric acid, L-threonine and glycyl-L-glutamic acid. Principal Component Analysis of the CLPP's clustered the most agriculturally affected groundwater samples, indicating that the agricultural land use affects the groundwater microbial communities. Furthermore, the ability to mineralize atrazine and isoproturon, which have been used in the catchment, was also associated with this cluster.

  8. Metagenomic analysis of an ecological wastewater treatment plant’s microbial communities and their potential to metabolize pharmaceuticals

    PubMed Central

    Balcom, Ian N.; Driscoll, Heather; Vincent, James; Leduc, Meagan

    2016-01-01

    Pharmaceuticals and other micropollutants have been detected in drinking water, groundwater, surface water, and soil around the world. Even in locations where wastewater treatment is required, they can be found in drinking water wells, municipal water supplies, and agricultural soils. It is clear conventional wastewater treatment technologies are not meeting the challenge of the mounting pressures on global freshwater supplies. Cost-effective ecological wastewater treatment technologies have been developed in response. To determine whether the removal of micropollutants in ecological wastewater treatment plants (WWTPs) is promoted by the plant-microbe interactions, as has been reported for other recalcitrant xenobiotics, biofilm microbial communities growing on the surfaces of plant roots were profiled by whole metagenome sequencing and compared to the microbial communities residing in the wastewater. In this study, the concentrations of pharmaceuticals and personal care products (PPCPs) were quantified in each treatment tank of the ecological WWTP treating human wastewater at a highway rest stop and visitor center in Vermont. The concentrations of detected PPCPs were substantially greater than values reported for conventional WWTPs likely due to onsite recirculation of wastewater. The greatest reductions in PPCPs concentrations were observed in the anoxic treatment tank where Bacilli dominated the biofilm community. Benzoate degradation was the most abundant xenobiotic metabolic category identified throughout the system. Collectively, the microbial communities residing in the wastewater were taxonomically and metabolically more diverse than the immersed plant root biofilm. However, greater heterogeneity and higher relative abundances of xenobiotic metabolism genes was observed for the root biofilm. PMID:27610223

  9. Systems biology of Microbial Communities

    SciTech Connect

    Navid, A; Ghim, C; Fenley, A; Yoon, S; Lee, S; Almaas, E

    2008-04-11

    Microbes exist naturally in a wide range of environments, spanning the extremes of high acidity and high temperature to soil and the ocean, in communities where their interactions are significant. We present a practical discussion of three different approaches for modeling microbial communities: rate equations, individual-based modeling, and population dynamics. We illustrate the approaches with detailed examples. Each approach is best fit to different levels of system representation, and they have different needs for detailed biological input. Thus, this set of approaches is able to address the operation and function of microbial communities on a wide range of organizational levels.

  10. Impact of dilution on microbial community structure and functional potential: comparison of numerical simulations and batch culture experiments

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Franklin, R. B.; Garland, J. L.; Bolster, C. H.; Mills, A. L.

    2001-01-01

    A series of microcosm experiments was performed using serial dilutions of a sewage microbial community to inoculate a set of batch cultures in sterile sewage. After inoculation, the dilution-defined communities were allowed to regrow for several days and a number of community attributes were measured in the regrown assemblages. Based upon a set of numerical simulations, community structure was expected to differ along the dilution gradient; the greatest differences in structure were anticipated between the undiluted-low-dilution communities and the communities regrown from the very dilute (more than 10(-4)) inocula. Furthermore, some differences were expected among the lower-dilution treatments (e.g., between undiluted and 10(-1)) depending upon the evenness of the original community. In general, each of the procedures used to examine the experimental community structures separated the communities into at least two, often three, distinct groups. The groupings were consistent with the simulated dilution of a mixture of organisms with a very uneven distribution. Significant differences in community structure were detected with genetic (amplified fragment length polymorphism and terminal restriction fragment length polymorphism), physiological (community level physiological profiling), and culture-based (colony morphology on R2A agar) measurements. Along with differences in community structure, differences in community size (acridine orange direct counting), composition (ratio of sewage medium counts to R2A counts, monitoring of each colony morphology across the treatments), and metabolic redundancy (i.e., generalist versus specialist) were also observed, suggesting that the differences in structure and diversity of communities maintained in the same environment can be manifested as differences in community organization and function.

  11. Investigation into the potential toxicity of zero-valent iron nanoparticles to a trichloroethylene-degrading groundwater microbial community

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zabetakis, Kara M.

    The microbiological impact of zero-valent iron remediation of groundwater was investigated by exposing a trichloroethylene-degrading anaerobic microbial community to bare and coated iron nanoparticles. Changes in population numbers and metabolic activity were analyzed using qPCR and were compared to those of a blank, negative, and positive control to assess for microbial toxicity. Additionally, these results were compared to those of samples exposed to an equal concentration of iron filings in an attempt to discern the source of toxicity. Statistical analysis revealed that the three iron treatments were equally toxic to total Bacteria and Archaea populations, as compared with the controls. Therefore, toxicity appears to result either from the release of iron ions and the generation of reactive oxygen species, or from alteration of the redox system and the disruption of microbial metabolisms. There does not appear to be a unique nanoparticle-based toxicity.

  12. Synthetic networks in microbial communities

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Suel, Gurol

    2015-03-01

    While bacteria are single celled organisms, they predominantly reside in structured communities known as biofilms. Cells in biofilms are encapsulated and protected by the extracellular matrix (ECM), which also confines cells in space. During biofilm development, microbial cells are organized in space and over time. Little is known regarding the processes that drive the spatio-temporal organization of microbial communities. Here I will present our latest efforts that utilize synthetic biology approaches to uncover the organizational principles that drive biofilm development. I will also discuss the possible implications of our recent findings in terms of the cost and benefit to biofilm cells.

  13. Health care workers' mobile phones: a potential cause of microbial cross-contamination between hospitals and community.

    PubMed

    Ustun, Cemal; Cihangiroglu, Mustafa

    2012-01-01

    This study evaluated the microbial contamination of health care workers' (HCWs) mobile phones. The study was conducted at a secondary referral hospital in July 2010. Samples were taken from all surfaces of the mobile phones using a sterile swab, and incubated on Brain Heart Infusion agar at 37.5°C for 24 hr. Any isolated microorganisms were grown aerobically on 5% sheep blood agar and eosin methylene-blue agar medium at 37.5°C for 24-48 hr. The Sceptor microdilution system was used to identify the microorganisms, together with conventional methods. The oxacillin disc diffusion test and double-disc synergy test were used to identify methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) and expanded-spectrum beta-lactamase (ESBL)-producing Gram-negative bacilli, respectively. The mobile phones were also categorized according to whether the HCWs used them in the intensive care unit (ICU). Overall, 183 mobile phones were screened: 94 (51.4%) from nurses, 32 (17.5%) from laboratory workers, and 57 (31.1%) from health care staff. In total, 179 (97.8%) culture-positive specimens were isolated from the 183 mobile phones, including 17 (9.5%) MRSA and 20 (11.2%) ESBL-producing Escherichia coli, which can cause nosocomial infections. No statistical difference was observed in the recovery of MRSA (p = 0.3) and ESBL-producing E. coli (p = 0.6) between the HCW groups. Forty-four (24.6%) of the 179 specimens were isolated from mobile phones of ICU workers, including two MRSA and nine ESBL-producing E. coli. A significant (p = 0.02) difference was detected in the isolation of ESBL-producing E. coli between ICU workers and non-ICU workers. HCWs' mobile phones are potential vectors for transferring nosocomial pathogens between HCWs, patients, and the community.

  14. High-resolution phylogenetic microbial community profiling

    SciTech Connect

    Singer, Esther; Coleman-Derr, Devin; Bowman, Brett; Schwientek, Patrick; Clum, Alicia; Copeland, Alex; Ciobanu, Doina; Cheng, Jan-Fang; Gies, Esther; Hallam, Steve; Tringe, Susannah; Woyke, Tanja

    2014-03-17

    The representation of bacterial and archaeal genome sequences is strongly biased towards cultivated organisms, which belong to merely four phylogenetic groups. Functional information and inter-phylum level relationships are still largely underexplored for candidate phyla, which are often referred to as microbial dark matter. Furthermore, a large portion of the 16S rRNA gene records in the GenBank database are labeled as environmental samples and unclassified, which is in part due to low read accuracy, potential chimeric sequences produced during PCR amplifications and the low resolution of short amplicons. In order to improve the phylogenetic classification of novel species and advance our knowledge of the ecosystem function of uncultivated microorganisms, high-throughput full length 16S rRNA gene sequencing methodologies with reduced biases are needed. We evaluated the performance of PacBio single-molecule real-time (SMRT) sequencing in high-resolution phylogenetic microbial community profiling. For this purpose, we compared PacBio and Illumina metagenomic shotgun and 16S rRNA gene sequencing of a mock community as well as of an environmental sample from Sakinaw Lake, British Columbia. Sakinaw Lake is known to contain a large age of microbial species from candidate phyla. Sequencing results show that community structure based on PacBio shotgun and 16S rRNA gene sequences is highly similar in both the mock and the environmental communities. Resolution power and community representation accuracy from SMRT sequencing data appeared to be independent of GC content of microbial genomes and was higher when compared to Illumina-based metagenome shotgun and 16S rRNA gene (iTag) sequences, e.g. full-length sequencing resolved all 23 OTUs in the mock community, while iTags did not resolve closely related species. SMRT sequencing hence offers various potential benefits when characterizing uncharted microbial communities.

  15. Ohmic resistance affects microbial community and ...

    EPA Pesticide Factsheets

    Multi-anode microbial electrochemical cells (MXCs) are considered as one of the most promising configurations for scale-up of MXCs, but fundamental understanding of anode kinetics governing current density is limited in the MXCs. In this study we first assessed microbial community and electrochemical kinetic parameters for biofilms on individual anodes in a multi-anode MXC to better comprehend anode fundamentals. Microbial community analysis using 16S rRNA illumine sequencing showed that Geobactor genus, one of the most kinetically efficient anode-respiring bacteria (ARB), was abundant (87%) only on the biofilm anode closest to a reference electrode in which current density was the highest among four anodes. In comparison, Geobacter populations were less than 11% for other three anodes more distant from the reference electrode, generating small current density. Half-saturation anode potential (EKA) was the lowest at -0.251 to -0.242 V (vs. standard hydrogen electrode) for the closest anode, while EKA was as high as -0.134 V for the farthest anode. Our study clearly proves that ohmic resistance changes anode potential which mainly causes different biofilm communities on individual anodes and consequently influences anode kinetics. This study explored the use of multiple anodes in microelectrochemical cells and the microbial community on these anodes, as a function of the efficiency in producing hydrogen peroxide.

  16. Microbial community structure and denitrification in a wetland mitigation bank.

    PubMed

    Peralta, Ariane L; Matthews, Jeffrey W; Kent, Angela D

    2010-07-01

    Wetland mitigation is implemented to replace ecosystem functions provided by wetlands; however, restoration efforts frequently fail to establish equivalent levels of ecosystem services. Delivery of microbially mediated ecosystem functions, such as denitrification, is influenced by both the structure and activity of the microbial community. The objective of this study was to compare the relationship between soil and vegetation factors and microbial community structure and function in restored and reference wetlands within a mitigation bank. Microbial community composition was assessed using terminal restriction fragment length polymorphism targeting the 16S rRNA gene (total bacteria) and the nosZ gene (denitrifiers). Comparisons of microbial function were based on potential denitrification rates. Bacterial community structures differed significantly between restored and reference wetlands; denitrifier community assemblages were similar among reference sites but highly variable among restored sites throughout the mitigation bank. Potential denitrification was highest in the reference wetland sites. These data demonstrate that wetland restoration efforts in this mitigation bank have not successfully restored denitrification and that differences in potential denitrification rates may be due to distinct microbial assemblages observed in restored and reference (natural) wetlands. Further, we have identified gradients in soil moisture and soil fertility that were associated with differences in microbial community structure. Microbial function was influenced by bacterial community composition and soil fertility. Identifying soil factors that are primary ecological drivers of soil bacterial communities, especially denitrifying populations, can potentially aid the development of predictive models for restoration of biogeochemical transformations and enhance the success of wetland restoration efforts.

  17. Microbial astronauts: assembling microbial communities for advanced life support systems

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Roberts, M. S.; Garland, J. L.; Mills, A. L.

    2004-01-01

    Extension of human habitation into space requires that humans carry with them many of the microorganisms with which they coexist on Earth. The ubiquity of microorganisms in close association with all living things and biogeochemical processes on Earth predicates that they must also play a critical role in maintaining the viability of human life in space. Even though bacterial populations exist as locally adapted ecotypes, the abundance of individuals in microbial species is so large that dispersal is unlikely to be limited by geographical barriers on Earth (i.e., for most environments "everything is everywhere" given enough time). This will not be true for microbial communities in space where local species richness will be relatively low because of sterilization protocols prior to launch and physical barriers between Earth and spacecraft after launch. Although community diversity will be sufficient to sustain ecosystem function at the onset, richness and evenness may decline over time such that biological systems either lose functional potential (e.g., bioreactors may fail to reduce BOD or nitrogen load) or become susceptible to invasion by human-associated microorganisms (pathogens) over time. Research at the John F. Kennedy Space Center has evaluated fundamental properties of microbial diversity and community assembly in prototype bioregenerative systems for NASA Advanced Life Support. Successional trends related to increased niche specialization, including an apparent increase in the proportion of nonculturable types of organisms, have been consistently observed. In addition, the stability of the microbial communities, as defined by their resistance to invasion by human-associated microorganisms, has been correlated to their diversity. Overall, these results reflect the significant challenges ahead for the assembly of stable, functional communities using gnotobiotic approaches, and the need to better define the basic biological principles that define ecosystem

  18. Use of 16S rRNA gene based clone libraries to assess microbial communities potentially involved in anaerobic methane oxidation in a Mediterranean cold seep.

    PubMed

    Heijs, Sander K; Haese, Ralf R; van der Wielen, Paul W J J; Forney, Larry J; van Elsas, Jan Dirk

    2007-04-01

    This study provides data on the diversities of bacterial and archaeal communities in an active methane seep at the Kazan mud volcano in the deep Eastern Mediterranean sea. Layers of varying depths in the Kazan sediments were investigated in terms of (1) chemical parameters and (2) DNA-based microbial population structures. The latter was accomplished by analyzing the sequences of directly amplified 16S rRNA genes, resulting in the phylogenetic analysis of the prokaryotic communities. Sequences of organisms potentially associated with processes such as anaerobic methane oxidation and sulfate reduction were thus identified. Overall, the sediment layers revealed the presence of sequences of quite diverse bacterial and archaeal communities, which varied considerably with depth. Dominant types revealed in these communities are known as key organisms involved in the following processes: (1) anaerobic methane oxidation and sulfate reduction, (2) sulfide oxidation, and (3) a range of (aerobic) heterotrophic processes. In the communities in the lowest sediment layer sampled (22-34 cm), sulfate-reducing bacteria and archaea of the ANME-2 cluster (likely involved in anaerobic methane oxidation) were prevalent, whereas heterotrophic organisms abounded in the top sediment layer (0-6 cm). Communities in the middle layer (6-22 cm) contained organisms that could be linked to either of the aforementioned processes. We discuss how these phylogeny (sequence)-based findings can support the ongoing molecular work aimed at unraveling both the functioning and the functional diversities of the communities under study.

  19. Impact of soil matric potential on the fine-scale spatial distribution and activity of specific microbial degrader communities.

    PubMed

    Monard, Cécile; Mchergui, Chokri; Nunan, Naoise; Martin-Laurent, Fabrice; Vieublé-Gonod, Laure

    2012-09-01

    The impact of the soil matric potential on the relationship between the relative abundance of degraders and their activity and on the spatial distribution of both at fine scales was determined to understand the role of environmental conditions in the degradation of organic substrates. The mineralization of (13) C-glucose and (13) C-2,4-dichlorophenoxyacetic acid (2,4-D) was measured at different matric potentials (-0.001, -0.01 and -0.316 MPa) in 6 × 6 × 6 mm(3) cubes excised from soil cores. At the end of the incubation, total bacterial and 2,4-D degrader abundances were determined by quantifying the 16S rRNA and the tfdA genes, respectively. The mineralization of 2,4-D was more sensitive to changes in matric potential than was that of glucose. The amount and spatial structure of 2,4-D mineralization decreased with matric potential, whilst the spatial variability increased. On the other hand, the spatial variation of glucose mineralization was less affected by changes in matric potential. The relationship between the relative abundance of 2,4-D degraders and 2,4-D mineralization was significantly affected by matric potential: the relative abundance of tfdA needed to be higher to reach a given level of 2,4-D mineralization in dryer than in moister conditions. The data show how microbial interactions with their microhabitat can have an impact on soil processes at larger scales.

  20. Molecular-based approaches to characterize coastal microbial community and their potential relation to the trophic state of Red Sea

    PubMed Central

    Ansari, Mohd Ikram; Harb, Moustapha; Jones, Burton; Hong, Pei-Ying

    2015-01-01

    Molecular-based approaches were used to characterize the coastal microbiota and to elucidate the trophic state of Red Sea. Nutrient content and enterococci numbers were monitored, and used to correlate with the abundance of microbial markers. Microbial source tracking revealed the presence of >1 human-associated Bacteroides spp. at some of the near-shore sampling sites and at a heavily frequented beach. Water samples collected from the beaches had occasional exceedances in enterococci numbers, higher total organic carbon (TOC, 1.48–2.18 mg/L) and nitrogen (TN, 0.15–0.27 mg/L) than that detected in the near-shore waters. Enterococci abundances obtained from next-generation sequencing did not correlate well with the cultured enterococci numbers. The abundance of certain genera, for example Arcobacter, Pseudomonas and unclassified Campylobacterales, was observed to exhibit slight correlation with TOC and TN. Low abundance of functional genes accounting for up to 41 copies/L of each Pseudomonas aeruginosa and Campylobacter coli were detected. Arcobacter butzleri was also detected in abundance ranging from 111 to 238 copies/L. Operational taxonomic units (OTUs) associated with cyanobacteria, Prochlorococcus, Ostreococcus spp. and Gramella were more prevalent in waters that were likely impacted by urban runoffs and recreational activities. These OTUs could potentially serve as quantifiable markers indicative of the water quality. PMID:25758166

  1. Wetland Microbial Community Response to Restoration

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Theroux, S.; Hartman, W.; Tringe, S. G.

    2015-12-01

    Wetland restoration has been proposed as a potential long-term carbon storage solution, with a goal of engineering geochemical dynamics to accelerate peat accretion and encourage greenhouse gas (GHG) sequestration. However, wetland microbial community composition and metabolic rates are poorly understood and their predicted response to wetland restoration is a veritable unknown. In an effort to better understand the underlying factors that shape the balance of carbon flux in wetland soils, we targeted the microbial communities along a salinity gradient ranging from freshwater tidal marshes to hypersaline ponds in the San Francisco Bay-Delta region. Using 16S rRNA gene sequencing and shotgun metagenomics, coupled with greenhouse gas measurements, we sampled sixteen sites capturing a range in salinity and restoration status. Seawater delivers sulfate to wetland ecosystems, encouraging sulfate reduction and discouraging methane production. As expected, we observed the highest rates of methane production in the freshwater wetlands. Recently restored wetlands had significantly higher rates of methane production compared to their historic counterparts that could be attributed to variations in trace metal and organic carbon content in younger wetlands. In contrast, our sequencing results revealed an almost immediate return of the indigenous microbial communities following seasonal flooding and full tidal restoration in saline and hypersaline wetlands and managed ponds. Notably, we found elevated methane production rates in hypersaline ponds, the result of methylotrophic methane production confirmed by sequence data and lab incubations. Our study links belowground microbial communities and their aboveground greenhouse gas production and highlights the inherent complexity in predicting wetland microbial response in the face of both natural and unnatural disturbances.

  2. Molecular methods for pathogen and microbial community detection and characterization: current and potential application in diagnostic microbiology.

    PubMed

    Sibley, Christopher D; Peirano, Gisele; Church, Deirdre L

    2012-04-01

    Clinical microbiology laboratories worldwide have historically relied on phenotypic methods (i.e., culture and biochemical tests) for detection, identification and characterization of virulence traits (e.g., antibiotic resistance genes, toxins) of human pathogens. However, limitations to implementation of molecular methods for human infectious diseases testing are being rapidly overcome allowing for the clinical evaluation and implementation of diverse technologies with expanding diagnostic capabilities. The advantages and limitation of molecular techniques including real-time polymerase chain reaction, partial or whole genome sequencing, molecular typing, microarrays, broad-range PCR and multiplexing will be discussed. Finally, terminal restriction fragment length polymorphism (T-RFLP) and deep sequencing are introduced as technologies at the clinical interface with the potential to dramatically enhance our ability to diagnose infectious diseases and better define the epidemiology and microbial ecology of a wide range of complex infections.

  3. Mass Spectrometry Imaging of Complex Microbial Communities

    PubMed Central

    2016-01-01

    and their hosts. In recognition of this potential for scientific advancement, researchers have adapted MSI methodologies for the specific needs of the microbiology research community. As a result, workflows exist for imaging microbial systems with many of the common MSI ionization methods. Despite this progress, there is substantial room for improvements in instrumentation, sample preparation, and data interpretation. This Account provides a brief overview of the state of technology in microbial MSI, illuminates selected applications that demonstrate the potential of the technique, and highlights a series of development challenges that are needed to move the field forward. In the coming years, as microbial MSI becomes easier to use and more universally applicable, the technique will evolve into a fundamental tool widely applied throughout many divisions of science, medicine, and industry. PMID:28001363

  4. Community history affects the predictability of microbial ecosystem development.

    PubMed

    Pagaling, Eulyn; Strathdee, Fiona; Spears, Bryan M; Cates, Michael E; Allen, Rosalind J; Free, Andrew

    2014-01-01

    Microbial communities mediate crucial biogeochemical, biomedical and biotechnological processes, yet our understanding of their assembly, and our ability to control its outcome, remain poor. Existing evidence presents conflicting views on whether microbial ecosystem assembly is predictable, or inherently unpredictable. We address this issue using a well-controlled laboratory model system, in which source microbial communities colonize a pristine environment to form complex, nutrient-cycling ecosystems. When the source communities colonize a novel environment, final community composition and function (as measured by redox potential) are unpredictable, although a signature of the community's previous history is maintained. However, when the source communities are pre-conditioned to their new habitat, community development is more reproducible. This situation contrasts with some studies of communities of macro-organisms, where strong selection under novel environmental conditions leads to reproducible community structure, whereas communities under weaker selection show more variability. Our results suggest that the microbial rare biosphere may have an important role in the predictability of microbial community development, and that pre-conditioning may help to reduce unpredictability in the design of microbial communities for biotechnological applications.

  5. Community history affects the predictability of microbial ecosystem development

    PubMed Central

    Pagaling, Eulyn; Strathdee, Fiona; Spears, Bryan M; Cates, Michael E; Allen, Rosalind J; Free, Andrew

    2014-01-01

    Microbial communities mediate crucial biogeochemical, biomedical and biotechnological processes, yet our understanding of their assembly, and our ability to control its outcome, remain poor. Existing evidence presents conflicting views on whether microbial ecosystem assembly is predictable, or inherently unpredictable. We address this issue using a well-controlled laboratory model system, in which source microbial communities colonize a pristine environment to form complex, nutrient-cycling ecosystems. When the source communities colonize a novel environment, final community composition and function (as measured by redox potential) are unpredictable, although a signature of the community's previous history is maintained. However, when the source communities are pre-conditioned to their new habitat, community development is more reproducible. This situation contrasts with some studies of communities of macro-organisms, where strong selection under novel environmental conditions leads to reproducible community structure, whereas communities under weaker selection show more variability. Our results suggest that the microbial rare biosphere may have an important role in the predictability of microbial community development, and that pre-conditioning may help to reduce unpredictability in the design of microbial communities for biotechnological applications. PMID:23985743

  6. Fundamentals of Microbial Community Resistance and Resilience

    PubMed Central

    Shade, Ashley; Peter, Hannes; Allison, Steven D.; Baho, Didier L.; Berga, Mercè; Bürgmann, Helmut; Huber, David H.; Langenheder, Silke; Lennon, Jay T.; Martiny, Jennifer B. H.; Matulich, Kristin L.; Schmidt, Thomas M.; Handelsman, Jo

    2012-01-01

    Microbial communities are at the heart of all ecosystems, and yet microbial community behavior in disturbed environments remains difficult to measure and predict. Understanding the drivers of microbial community stability, including resistance (insensitivity to disturbance) and resilience (the rate of recovery after disturbance) is important for predicting community response to disturbance. Here, we provide an overview of the concepts of stability that are relevant for microbial communities. First, we highlight insights from ecology that are useful for defining and measuring stability. To determine whether general disturbance responses exist for microbial communities, we next examine representative studies from the literature that investigated community responses to press (long-term) and pulse (short-term) disturbances in a variety of habitats. Then we discuss the biological features of individual microorganisms, of microbial populations, and of microbial communities that may govern overall community stability. We conclude with thoughts about the unique insights that systems perspectives – informed by meta-omics data – may provide about microbial community stability. PMID:23267351

  7. Hydrolytic microbial communities in terrestrial ecosystems

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Manucharova, Natalia; Chernov, Timofey; Kolcova, Ekaterina; Zelezova, Alena; Lukacheva, Euhenia; Zenova, Galina

    2014-05-01

    Hydrolytic microbial communities in terrestrial ecosystems Manucharova N.A., Chernov T.I., Kolcova E.M., Zelezova A.D., Lukacheva E.G. Lomonosov Moscow State University, Russia Vertical differentiation of terrestrial biogeocenoses is conditioned by the formation of vertical tiers that differ considerably in the composition and structure of microbial communities. All the three tiers, phylloplane, litter and soil, are united by a single flow of organic matter, and are spatially separated successional stages of decomposition of organic substances. Decomposition of organic matter is mainly due to the activity of microorganisms producing enzymes - hydrolase and lyase - which destroy complex organic compounds. Application of molecular biological techniques (FISH) in environmental studies provides a more complete information concerning the taxonomic diversity and potential hydrolytic activity of microbial complexes of terrestrial ecosystems that exist in a wide range of environmental factors (moisture, temperature, redox potential, organic matter). The combination of two molecular biological techniques (FISH and DGGE-analysis of fragments of gene 16S rRNA total amplificate) enables an informative assessment of the differences in the structure of dominant and minor components of hydrolytic complexes formed in different tiers of terrestrial ecosystems. The functional activity of hydrolytic microbial complexes of terrestrial ecosystems is determined by the activity of dominant and minor components, which also have a high gross enzymatic activity. Degradation of biopolymers in the phylloplane is mainly due to the representatives of the Proteobacteria phylogenetic group (classes alpha and beta). In mineral soil horizons, the role of hydrolytic representatives of Firmicutes and Actinobacteria increases. Among the key environmental parameters that determine the functional activity of the hydrolytic (chitinolytic) complex of soil layer (moisture, nutrient supply, successional

  8. Potential and optimization of two-phase anaerobic digestion of oil refinery waste activated sludge and microbial community study

    PubMed Central

    Wang, Qinghong; Liang, Ying; Zhao, Peng; Li, Qing X.; Guo, Shaohui; Chen, Chunmao

    2016-01-01

    Oil refinery waste activated sludge produced from oil wastewater biological treatment is a major industrial sludge. Two-phase anaerobic digestion of oil refinery waste activated sludge was studied for the first time. Thermal pretreatment under 170 °C is effective on sludge solubilization. At the optimum hydrolytic-acidogenic condition which was pH of 6.5, temperature of 55 °C and HRT of 2 days, 2754 mg/L volatile fatty acids (VFAs) were produced and acetic acid and butyric acid were the key components. Comparative studies of single-phase and two-phase anaerobic digestion in terms of organic removal, biogas production and methane concentration were conducted. The cumulative methane production and soluble COD (SCOD) removal efficiency in the two-phase system were 228 mL/g COD added and 77.8%, respectively, which were 1.6 and 2.1 times higher than those in single-phase anaerobic digestion. Such improved performance is attributed to intensification of dominant microbial population in separated reactors. Caloramator, Ureibacillus, Dechloromonas, Petrobacter, and T78 played important roles in hydrolytic-acidification and oil-organics degradation. Syntrophic bacteria in the family Porphyromonadaceae and the genus Anaerobranca provide acetate for methanogen. The results demonstrated the potential and operating condition of two-phase anaerobic digestion in treatment of oil refinery waste activated sludge. PMID:27905538

  9. Potential and optimization of two-phase anaerobic digestion of oil refinery waste activated sludge and microbial community study

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wang, Qinghong; Liang, Ying; Zhao, Peng; Li, Qing X.; Guo, Shaohui; Chen, Chunmao

    2016-12-01

    Oil refinery waste activated sludge produced from oil wastewater biological treatment is a major industrial sludge. Two-phase anaerobic digestion of oil refinery waste activated sludge was studied for the first time. Thermal pretreatment under 170 °C is effective on sludge solubilization. At the optimum hydrolytic-acidogenic condition which was pH of 6.5, temperature of 55 °C and HRT of 2 days, 2754 mg/L volatile fatty acids (VFAs) were produced and acetic acid and butyric acid were the key components. Comparative studies of single-phase and two-phase anaerobic digestion in terms of organic removal, biogas production and methane concentration were conducted. The cumulative methane production and soluble COD (SCOD) removal efficiency in the two-phase system were 228 mL/g COD added and 77.8%, respectively, which were 1.6 and 2.1 times higher than those in single-phase anaerobic digestion. Such improved performance is attributed to intensification of dominant microbial population in separated reactors. Caloramator, Ureibacillus, Dechloromonas, Petrobacter, and T78 played important roles in hydrolytic-acidification and oil-organics degradation. Syntrophic bacteria in the family Porphyromonadaceae and the genus Anaerobranca provide acetate for methanogen. The results demonstrated the potential and operating condition of two-phase anaerobic digestion in treatment of oil refinery waste activated sludge.

  10. Potential and optimization of two-phase anaerobic digestion of oil refinery waste activated sludge and microbial community study.

    PubMed

    Wang, Qinghong; Liang, Ying; Zhao, Peng; Li, Qing X; Guo, Shaohui; Chen, Chunmao

    2016-12-01

    Oil refinery waste activated sludge produced from oil wastewater biological treatment is a major industrial sludge. Two-phase anaerobic digestion of oil refinery waste activated sludge was studied for the first time. Thermal pretreatment under 170 °C is effective on sludge solubilization. At the optimum hydrolytic-acidogenic condition which was pH of 6.5, temperature of 55 °C and HRT of 2 days, 2754 mg/L volatile fatty acids (VFAs) were produced and acetic acid and butyric acid were the key components. Comparative studies of single-phase and two-phase anaerobic digestion in terms of organic removal, biogas production and methane concentration were conducted. The cumulative methane production and soluble COD (SCOD) removal efficiency in the two-phase system were 228 mL/g COD added and 77.8%, respectively, which were 1.6 and 2.1 times higher than those in single-phase anaerobic digestion. Such improved performance is attributed to intensification of dominant microbial population in separated reactors. Caloramator, Ureibacillus, Dechloromonas, Petrobacter, and T78 played important roles in hydrolytic-acidification and oil-organics degradation. Syntrophic bacteria in the family Porphyromonadaceae and the genus Anaerobranca provide acetate for methanogen. The results demonstrated the potential and operating condition of two-phase anaerobic digestion in treatment of oil refinery waste activated sludge.

  11. Molecular Survey of Concrete Biofilm Microbial Communities

    EPA Science Inventory

    Although several studies have shown that bacteria can deteriorate concrete structures, there is very little information on the composition of concrete microbial communities. To this end, we studied different microbial communities associated with concrete biofilms using 16S rRNA g...

  12. Reciprocal influences of microbial community and hydrogeomorphology in sandy streambeds

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mendoza-Lera, C.; Federlein, L. L.; Frossard, A.; Gessner, M. O.; Knie, M.; Mutz, M.

    2015-12-01

    Stream hydrogeomorphology is a strong determinant of streambed microbial community activity, which in turn influences stream biogeochemistry. Whether this influence is unidirectional or whether microbial communities can also modulate biogeochemical processes by affecting hydrogeomorphology is an emerging question in research on sediment-water interfaces. Using experimental flumes simulating sandy streams, we tested whether such influences can occur through altered water exchange across the sediment-water interface. Results show that microbial communities in sandy streambeds can indeed affect hydrogeomorphology by producing gas bubbles. Specifically, gas bubbles accumulating in microbial biofilms can alter the water exchange by (i) reducing sediment pore space or (ii) provoking the detachment of the microbial biofilm detachment and thus altering streambed topography. Additionally, results indicate that water exchange is the major for the structure and activity of the microbial community. Our data also indicate that the potential of microbial communities to influence water exchange can be modulated by factors such as light intensity and discharge fluctuations. These biological-physical interactions and their effects on the influence of microbial communities on hydrogeomorphology is a source of spatiotemporal variability in water exchange across the sediment-water interface. Heterogeneity in water exchange is known to increase biogeochemical pathways and, thus, ecosystem functions. These results suggest that a holistic understanding of vertical connectivity in running waters requires consideration of biological-physical interactions at the water-sediment interface.

  13. The functional potential of microbial communities in hydraulic fracturing source water and produced water from natural gas extraction characterized by metagenomic sequencing

    DOE PAGES

    Mohan, Arvind Murali; Bibby, Kyle J.; Lipus, Daniel; ...

    2014-10-22

    Microbial activity in produced water from hydraulic fracturing operations can lead to undesired environmental impacts and increase gas production costs. However, the metabolic profile of these microbial communities is not well understood. Here, for the first time, we present results from a shotgun metagenome of microbial communities in both hydraulic fracturing source water and wastewater produced by hydraulic fracturing. Taxonomic analyses showed an increase in anaerobic/facultative anaerobic classes related to Clostridia, Gammaproteobacteria, Bacteroidia and Epsilonproteobacteria in produced water as compared to predominantly aerobic Alphaproteobacteria in the fracturing source water. Thus, the metabolic profile revealed a relative increase in genes responsiblemore » for carbohydrate metabolism, respiration, sporulation and dormancy, iron acquisition and metabolism, stress response and sulfur metabolism in the produced water samples. These results suggest that microbial communities in produced water have an increased genetic ability to handle stress, which has significant implications for produced water management, such as disinfection.« less

  14. The functional potential of microbial communities in hydraulic fracturing source water and produced water from natural gas extraction characterized by metagenomic sequencing.

    PubMed

    Mohan, Arvind Murali; Bibby, Kyle J; Lipus, Daniel; Hammack, Richard W; Gregory, Kelvin B

    2014-01-01

    Microbial activity in produced water from hydraulic fracturing operations can lead to undesired environmental impacts and increase gas production costs. However, the metabolic profile of these microbial communities is not well understood. Here, for the first time, we present results from a shotgun metagenome of microbial communities in both hydraulic fracturing source water and wastewater produced by hydraulic fracturing. Taxonomic analyses showed an increase in anaerobic/facultative anaerobic classes related to Clostridia, Gammaproteobacteria, Bacteroidia and Epsilonproteobacteria in produced water as compared to predominantly aerobic Alphaproteobacteria in the fracturing source water. The metabolic profile revealed a relative increase in genes responsible for carbohydrate metabolism, respiration, sporulation and dormancy, iron acquisition and metabolism, stress response and sulfur metabolism in the produced water samples. These results suggest that microbial communities in produced water have an increased genetic ability to handle stress, which has significant implications for produced water management, such as disinfection.

  15. The Functional Potential of Microbial Communities in Hydraulic Fracturing Source Water and Produced Water from Natural Gas Extraction Characterized by Metagenomic Sequencing

    PubMed Central

    Mohan, Arvind Murali; Bibby, Kyle J.; Lipus, Daniel; Hammack, Richard W.; Gregory, Kelvin B.

    2014-01-01

    Microbial activity in produced water from hydraulic fracturing operations can lead to undesired environmental impacts and increase gas production costs. However, the metabolic profile of these microbial communities is not well understood. Here, for the first time, we present results from a shotgun metagenome of microbial communities in both hydraulic fracturing source water and wastewater produced by hydraulic fracturing. Taxonomic analyses showed an increase in anaerobic/facultative anaerobic classes related to Clostridia, Gammaproteobacteria, Bacteroidia and Epsilonproteobacteria in produced water as compared to predominantly aerobic Alphaproteobacteria in the fracturing source water. The metabolic profile revealed a relative increase in genes responsible for carbohydrate metabolism, respiration, sporulation and dormancy, iron acquisition and metabolism, stress response and sulfur metabolism in the produced water samples. These results suggest that microbial communities in produced water have an increased genetic ability to handle stress, which has significant implications for produced water management, such as disinfection. PMID:25338024

  16. Seasonal dynamics of microbial community composition and function in oak canopy and open grassland soils

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Waldrop, M.P.; Firestone, M.K.

    2006-01-01

    Soil microbial communities are closely associated with aboveground plant communities, with multiple potential drivers of this relationship. Plants can affect available soil carbon, temperature, and water content, which each have the potential to affect microbial community composition and function. These same variables change seasonally, and thus plant control on microbial community composition may be modulated or overshadowed by annual climatic patterns. We examined microbial community composition, C cycling processes, and environmental data in California annual grassland soils from beneath oak canopies and in open grassland areas to distinguish factors controlling microbial community composition and function seasonally and in association with the two plant overstory communities. Every 3 months for up to 2 years, we monitored microbial community composition using phospholipid fatty acid (PLFA) analysis, microbial biomass, respiration rates, microbial enzyme activities, and the activity of microbial groups using isotope labeling of PLFA biomarkers (13C-PLFA) . Distinct microbial communities were associated with oak canopy soils and open grassland soils and microbial communities displayed seasonal patterns from year to year. The effects of plant species and seasonal climate on microbial community composition were similar in magnitude. In this Mediterranean ecosystem, plant control of microbial community composition was primarily due to effects on soil water content, whereas the changes in microbial community composition seasonally appeared to be due, in large part, to soil temperature. Available soil carbon was not a significant control on microbial community composition. Microbial community composition (PLFA) and 13C-PLFA ordination values were strongly related to intra-annual variability in soil enzyme activities and soil respiration, but microbial biomass was not. In this Mediterranean climate, soil microclimate appeared to be the master variable controlling

  17. Emergent Biosynthetic Capacity in Simple Microbial Communities

    PubMed Central

    Chiu, Hsuan-Chao; Levy, Roie; Borenstein, Elhanan

    2014-01-01

    Microbes have an astonishing capacity to transform their environments. Yet, the metabolic capacity of a single species is limited and the vast majority of microorganisms form complex communities and join forces to exhibit capabilities far exceeding those achieved by any single species. Such enhanced metabolic capacities represent a promising route to many medical, environmental, and industrial applications and call for the development of a predictive, systems-level understanding of synergistic microbial capacity. Here we present a comprehensive computational framework, integrating high-quality metabolic models of multiple species, temporal dynamics, and flux variability analysis, to study the metabolic capacity and dynamics of simple two-species microbial ecosystems. We specifically focus on detecting emergent biosynthetic capacity – instances in which a community growing on some medium produces and secretes metabolites that are not secreted by any member species when growing in isolation on that same medium. Using this framework to model a large collection of two-species communities on multiple media, we demonstrate that emergent biosynthetic capacity is highly prevalent. We identify commonly observed emergent metabolites and metabolic reprogramming patterns, characterizing typical mechanisms of emergent capacity. We further find that emergent secretion tends to occur in two waves, the first as soon as the two organisms are introduced, and the second when the medium is depleted and nutrients become limited. Finally, aiming to identify global community determinants of emergent capacity, we find a marked association between the level of emergent biosynthetic capacity and the functional/phylogenetic distance between community members. Specifically, we demonstrate a “Goldilocks” principle, where high levels of emergent capacity are observed when the species comprising the community are functionally neither too close, nor too distant. Taken together, our results

  18. Emergent biosynthetic capacity in simple microbial communities.

    PubMed

    Chiu, Hsuan-Chao; Levy, Roie; Borenstein, Elhanan

    2014-07-01

    Microbes have an astonishing capacity to transform their environments. Yet, the metabolic capacity of a single species is limited and the vast majority of microorganisms form complex communities and join forces to exhibit capabilities far exceeding those achieved by any single species. Such enhanced metabolic capacities represent a promising route to many medical, environmental, and industrial applications and call for the development of a predictive, systems-level understanding of synergistic microbial capacity. Here we present a comprehensive computational framework, integrating high-quality metabolic models of multiple species, temporal dynamics, and flux variability analysis, to study the metabolic capacity and dynamics of simple two-species microbial ecosystems. We specifically focus on detecting emergent biosynthetic capacity--instances in which a community growing on some medium produces and secretes metabolites that are not secreted by any member species when growing in isolation on that same medium. Using this framework to model a large collection of two-species communities on multiple media, we demonstrate that emergent biosynthetic capacity is highly prevalent. We identify commonly observed emergent metabolites and metabolic reprogramming patterns, characterizing typical mechanisms of emergent capacity. We further find that emergent secretion tends to occur in two waves, the first as soon as the two organisms are introduced, and the second when the medium is depleted and nutrients become limited. Finally, aiming to identify global community determinants of emergent capacity, we find a marked association between the level of emergent biosynthetic capacity and the functional/phylogenetic distance between community members. Specifically, we demonstrate a "Goldilocks" principle, where high levels of emergent capacity are observed when the species comprising the community are functionally neither too close, nor too distant. Taken together, our results

  19. A trait-based approach for examining microbial community assembly

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Prest, T. L.; Nemergut, D.

    2015-12-01

    Microorganisms regulate all of Earth's major biogeochemical cycles and an understanding of how microbial communities assemble is a key part in evaluating controls over many types of ecosystem processes. Rapid advances in technology and bioinformatics have led to a better appreciation for the variation in microbial community structure in time and space. Yet, advances in theory are necessary to make sense of these data and allow us to generate unifying hypotheses about the causes and consequences of patterns in microbial biodiversity and what they mean for ecosystem function. Here, I will present a metaanalysis of microbial community assembly from a variety of successional and post-disturbance systems. Our analysis shows various distinct patterns in community assembly, and the potential importance of nutrients and dispersal in shaping microbial community beta diversity in these systems. We also used a trait-based approach to generate hypotheses about the mechanisms driving patterns of microbial community assembly and the implications for function. Our work reveals the importance of rRNA operon copy number as a community aggregated trait in helping to reconcile differences in community dynamics between distinct types of successional and disturbed systems. Specifically, our results demonstrate that decreases in average copy number can be a common feature of communities across various drivers of ecological succession, supporting a transition from an r-selected to a K-selected community. Importantly, our work supports the scaling of the copy number trait over multiple levels of biological organization, from cells to populations and communities, and has implications for both ecology and evolution. Trait-based approaches are an important next step to generate and test hypotheses about the forces structuring microbial communities and the subsequent consequences for ecosystem function.

  20. Methane Potential and Microbial Community Dynamics in Anaerobic Digestion of Silage and Dry Cornstalks: a Substrate Exchange Study.

    PubMed

    Zhao, Ye; Yuan, Xufeng; Wen, Boting; Wang, Xiaofen; Zhu, Wanbin; Cui, Zongjun

    2017-01-01

    Silage and dry are the two typical cornstalk forms. Either form could be used as substrate in biogas plants and might be replaced by another when shortage occurred. This study focused on the feeding sequence of these two kinds of feedstocks, aiming to discuss their specific methane potential (SMP). A 15-day hydraulic retention time was chosen for semi-continuous experiments based on the batch test results. In semi-continuous experiments, before and after feedstocks were exchanged, the significantly decreased and comparable SMPs of silage and dry cornstalks indicated that a basis of unstable digestion would result in incomplete methane release from the subsequent digestion. A higher similarity of bacterial community structure and greater quantity of bacteria were shown in acidified silage cornstalk digestion through band similarity analysis. Methanosaetaceae and methanomicrobiales were the predominant methanogens, and aceticlastic methanogenesis was the main route for methane production. The different feeding sequences affected the hydrolysis course and further influenced the methanogenic proliferation. Our work suggests that silage cornstalk digestion should be conducted before dry cornstalk digestion.

  1. Human and Environmental Impacts on River Sediment Microbial Communities

    PubMed Central

    Gibbons, Sean M.; Jones, Edwin; Bearquiver, Angelita; Blackwolf, Frederick; Roundstone, Wayne; Scott, Nicole; Hooker, Jeff; Madsen, Robert; Coleman, Maureen L.; Gilbert, Jack A.

    2014-01-01

    Sediment microbial communities are responsible for a majority of the metabolic activity in river and stream ecosystems. Understanding the dynamics in community structure and function across freshwater environments will help us to predict how these ecosystems will change in response to human land-use practices. Here we present a spatiotemporal study of sediments in the Tongue River (Montana, USA), comprising six sites along 134 km of river sampled in both spring and fall for two years. Sequencing of 16S rRNA amplicons and shotgun metagenomes revealed that these sediments are the richest (∼65,000 microbial ‘species’ identified) and most novel (93% of OTUs do not match known microbial diversity) ecosystems analyzed by the Earth Microbiome Project to date, and display more functional diversity than was detected in a recent review of global soil metagenomes. Community structure and functional potential have been significantly altered by anthropogenic drivers, including increased pathogenicity and antibiotic metabolism markers near towns and metabolic signatures of coal and coalbed methane extraction byproducts. The core (OTUs shared across all samples) and the overall microbial community exhibited highly similar structure, and phylogeny was weakly coupled with functional potential. Together, these results suggest that microbial community structure is shaped by environmental drivers and niche filtering, though stochastic assembly processes likely play a role as well. These results indicate that sediment microbial communities are highly complex and sensitive to changes in land use practices. PMID:24841417

  2. Comparative molecular analysis of endoevaporitic microbial communities.

    PubMed

    Sahl, Jason W; Pace, Norman R; Spear, John R

    2008-10-01

    A phylogenetic comparison of microbial communities in hypersaline evaporites was conducted on crusts from Guerrero Negro, Mexico, and Lindsey Lake, New Mexico, using culture-independent rRNA gene sequence analysis. Many sequences were shared between evaporites, which suggests that similar environments select for specific microbial lineages from a global metacommunity.

  3. Metabolically active microbial communities in uranium-contaminated subsurface sediments.

    PubMed

    Akob, Denise M; Mills, Heath J; Kostka, Joel E

    2007-01-01

    In order to develop effective bioremediation strategies for radionuclide contaminants, the composition and metabolic potential of microbial communities need to be better understood, especially in highly contaminated subsurface sediments for which little cultivation-independent information is available. In this study, we characterized metabolically active and total microbial communities associated with uranium-contaminated subsurface sediments along geochemical gradients. DNA and RNA were extracted and amplified from four sediment-depth intervals representing moderately acidic (pH 3.7) to near-neutral (pH 6.7) conditions. Phylotypes related to Proteobacteria (Alpha-, Beta-, Delta- and Gammaproteobacteria), Bacteroidetes, Actinobacteria, Firmicutes and Planctomycetes were detected in DNA- and RNA-derived clone libraries. Diversity and numerical dominance of phylotypes were observed to correspond to changes in sediment geochemistry and rates of microbial activity, suggesting that geochemical conditions have selected for well-adapted taxa. Sequences closely related to nitrate-reducing bacteria represented 28% and 43% of clones from the total and metabolically active fractions of the microbial community, respectively. This study provides the first detailed analysis of total and metabolically active microbial communities in radionuclide-contaminated subsurface sediments. Our microbial community analysis, in conjunction with rates of microbial activity, points to several groups of nitrate-reducers that appear to be well adapted to environmental conditions common to radionuclide-contaminated sites.

  4. Perspective for Aquaponic Systems: "Omic" Technologies for Microbial Community Analysis.

    PubMed

    Munguia-Fragozo, Perla; Alatorre-Jacome, Oscar; Rico-Garcia, Enrique; Torres-Pacheco, Irineo; Cruz-Hernandez, Andres; Ocampo-Velazquez, Rosalia V; Garcia-Trejo, Juan F; Guevara-Gonzalez, Ramon G

    2015-01-01

    Aquaponics is the combined production of aquaculture and hydroponics, connected by a water recirculation system. In this productive system, the microbial community is responsible for carrying out the nutrient dynamics between the components. The nutrimental transformations mainly consist in the transformation of chemical species from toxic compounds into available nutrients. In this particular field, the microbial research, the "Omic" technologies will allow a broader scope of studies about a current microbial profile inside aquaponics community, even in those species that currently are unculturable. This approach can also be useful to understand complex interactions of living components in the system. Until now, the analog studies were made to set up the microbial characterization on recirculation aquaculture systems (RAS). However, microbial community composition of aquaponics is still unknown. "Omic" technologies like metagenomic can help to reveal taxonomic diversity. The perspectives are also to begin the first attempts to sketch the functional diversity inside aquaponic systems and its ecological relationships. The knowledge of the emergent properties inside the microbial community, as well as the understanding of the biosynthesis pathways, can derive in future biotechnological applications. Thus, the aim of this review is to show potential applications of current "Omic" tools to characterize the microbial community in aquaponic systems.

  5. Two-stage microbial community experimental design.

    PubMed

    Tickle, Timothy L; Segata, Nicola; Waldron, Levi; Weingart, Uri; Huttenhower, Curtis

    2013-12-01

    Microbial community samples can be efficiently surveyed in high throughput by sequencing markers such as the 16S ribosomal RNA gene. Often, a collection of samples is then selected for subsequent metagenomic, metabolomic or other follow-up. Two-stage study design has long been used in ecology but has not yet been studied in-depth for high-throughput microbial community investigations. To avoid ad hoc sample selection, we developed and validated several purposive sample selection methods for two-stage studies (that is, biological criteria) targeting differing types of microbial communities. These methods select follow-up samples from large community surveys, with criteria including samples typical of the initially surveyed population, targeting specific microbial clades or rare species, maximizing diversity, representing extreme or deviant communities, or identifying communities distinct or discriminating among environment or host phenotypes. The accuracies of each sampling technique and their influences on the characteristics of the resulting selected microbial community were evaluated using both simulated and experimental data. Specifically, all criteria were able to identify samples whose properties were accurately retained in 318 paired 16S amplicon and whole-community metagenomic (follow-up) samples from the Human Microbiome Project. Some selection criteria resulted in follow-up samples that were strongly non-representative of the original survey population; diversity maximization particularly undersampled community configurations. Only selection of intentionally representative samples minimized differences in the selected sample set from the original microbial survey. An implementation is provided as the microPITA (Microbiomes: Picking Interesting Taxa for Analysis) software for two-stage study design of microbial communities.

  6. A conceptual framework for invasion in microbial communities.

    PubMed

    Kinnunen, Marta; Dechesne, Arnaud; Proctor, Caitlin; Hammes, Frederik; Johnson, David; Quintela-Baluja, Marcos; Graham, David; Daffonchio, Daniele; Fodelianakis, Stilianos; Hahn, Nicole; Boon, Nico; Smets, Barth F

    2016-12-01

    There is a growing interest in controlling-promoting or avoiding-the invasion of microbial communities by new community members. Resource availability and community structure have been reported as determinants of invasion success. However, most invasion studies do not adhere to a coherent and consistent terminology nor always include rigorous interpretations of the processes behind invasion. Therefore, we suggest that a consistent set of definitions and a rigorous conceptual framework are needed. We define invasion in a microbial community as the establishment of an alien microbial type in a resident community and argue how simple criteria to define aliens, residents, and alien establishment can be applied for a wide variety of communities. In addition, we suggest an adoption of the community ecology framework advanced by Vellend (2010) to clarify potential determinants of invasion. This framework identifies four fundamental processes that control community dynamics: dispersal, selection, drift and diversification. While selection has received ample attention in microbial community invasion research, the three other processes are often overlooked. Here, we elaborate on the relevance of all four processes and conclude that invasion experiments should be designed to elucidate the role of dispersal, drift and diversification, in order to obtain a complete picture of invasion as a community process.

  7. Signaling in host-associated microbial communities

    PubMed Central

    Fischbach, Michael A.; Segre, Julia A.

    2016-01-01

    Human-associated microbiota form and stabilize communities based on interspecies interactions. We review how these microbe-microbe and microbe-host interactions are communicated to shape communities over a human’s lifespan, including periods of health and disease. Modeling and dissecting signaling in host-associated communities is crucial to understand their function, and will open the door to therapies that prevent or correct microbial community dysfunction to promote health and treat disease. PMID:26967294

  8. Surface reflectance degradation by microbial communities

    DOE PAGES

    Cheng, Meng -Dawn; Allman, Steve L.; Graham, David E.; ...

    2015-11-05

    Building envelope, such as a roof, is the interface between a building structure and the environment. Understanding of the physics of microbial interactions with the building envelope is limited. In addition to the natural weathering, microorganisms and airborne particulate matter that attach to a cool roof tend to reduce the roof reflectance over time, compromising the energy efficiency advantages of the reflective coating designs. We applied microbial ecology analysis to identify the natural communities present on the exposed coatings and investigated the reduction kinetics of the surface reflectance upon the introduction of a defined mixture of both photoautotrophic and heterotrophicmore » microorganisms representing the natural communities. The result are (1) reflectance degradation by microbial communities follows a first-order kinetic relationship and (2) more than 50% of degradation from the initial reflectance value can be caused by microbial species alone in much less time than 3 years required by the current standard ENERGY STAR® test methods.« less

  9. Soil microbial community of abandoned sand fields.

    PubMed

    Elhottová, D; Szili-Kovács, T; Tríska, J

    2002-01-01

    Microbiological evaluation of sandy grassland soils from two different stages of secondary succession on abandoned fields (4 and 8 years old fallow) was carried out as a part of research focused on restoration of semi-natural vegetation communities in Kiskunság National Park in Hungary. There was an apparent total N and organic C enrichment, stimulation of microbial growth and microbial community structure change on fields abandoned by agricultural practice (small family farm) in comparison with native undisturbed grassland. A successional trend of the microbial community was found after 4 and 8 years of fallow-lying soil. It consisted in a shift of r-survival strategy to more efficient C economy, in a decrease of specific respiration and metabolic activity, forced accumulation of storage bacterial compounds and increased fungal distribution. The composition of microbial phospholipid fatty acids mixture of soils abandoned at various times was significantly different.

  10. Surface reflectance degradation by microbial communities

    SciTech Connect

    Cheng, Meng -Dawn; Allman, Steve L.; Graham, David E.; Cheng, Karen R.; Pfiffner, Susan Marie; Vishnivetskaya, Tatiana A.; Desjarlais, Andre Omer

    2015-11-05

    Building envelope, such as a roof, is the interface between a building structure and the environment. Understanding of the physics of microbial interactions with the building envelope is limited. In addition to the natural weathering, microorganisms and airborne particulate matter that attach to a cool roof tend to reduce the roof reflectance over time, compromising the energy efficiency advantages of the reflective coating designs. We applied microbial ecology analysis to identify the natural communities present on the exposed coatings and investigated the reduction kinetics of the surface reflectance upon the introduction of a defined mixture of both photoautotrophic and heterotrophic microorganisms representing the natural communities. The result are (1) reflectance degradation by microbial communities follows a first-order kinetic relationship and (2) more than 50% of degradation from the initial reflectance value can be caused by microbial species alone in much less time than 3 years required by the current standard ENERGY STAR® test methods.

  11. Measurements of Microbial Community Activities in Individual Soil Macroaggregates

    SciTech Connect

    Bailey, Vanessa L.; Bilskis, Christina L.; Fansler, Sarah J.; McCue, Lee Ann; Smith, Jeff L.; Konopka, Allan

    2012-05-01

    The functional potential of single soil aggregates may provide insights into the localized distribution of microbial activities better than traditional assays conducted on bulk quantities of soil. Thus, we scaled down enzyme assays for {beta}-glucosidase, N-acetyl-{beta}-D-glucosaminidase, lipase, and leucine aminopeptidase to measure of the enzyme potential of individual aggregates (250-1000 {mu}m diameter). Across all enzymes, the smallest aggregates had the greatest activity and the range of enzyme activities observed in all aggregates supports the hypothesis that functional potential in soil may be distributed in a patchy fashion. Paired analyses of ATP as a surrogate for active microbial biomass and {beta}-glucosidase on the same aggregates suggest the presence of both extracellular {beta}-glucosidase functioning in aggregates with no detectable ATP and also of relatively active microbial communities (high ATP) that have low {beta}-glucosidase potentials. Studying function at a scale more consistent with microbial habitat presents greater opportunity to link microbial community structure to microbial community function.

  12. Characterization of the microbial community in a lotic environment to assess the effect of pollution on nitrifying and potentially pathogenic bacteria.

    PubMed

    Medeiros, J D; Araújo, L X; da Silva, V L; Diniz, C G; Cesar, D E; Del'Duca, A; Coelho, C M

    2014-08-01

    This study aimed to investigate microbes involved in the nitrogen cycle and potentially pathogenic bacteria from urban and rural sites of the São Pedro stream. Water samples were collected from two sites. A seasonal survey of bacterial abundance was conducted. The dissolved nutrient content was analysed. PCR and FISH analysis were performed to identify and quantify microbes involved in the nitrogen cycle and potentially pathogenic bacteria. The seasonal survey revealed that the bacterial abundance was similar along the year on the rural area but varied on the urban site. Higher concentration of dissolved nutrients in the urban area indicated a eutrophic system. Considering the nitrifying microbes, the genus Nitrobacter was found, especially in the urban area, and may act as the principal bacteria in converting nitrite into nitrate at this site. The molecular markers napA, amoA, and nfrA were more accumulated at the urban site, justifying the higher content of nutrients metabolised by these enzymes. Finally, high intensity of amplicons from Enterococcus, Streptococcus, Bacteroides/Prevotella/Porphyromonas, Salmonella, S. aureus, P. aeruginosa and the diarrheagenic lineages of E. coli were observed at the urban site. These results indicate a change in the structure of the microbial community imposed by anthrophic actions. The incidence of pathogenic bacteria in aquatic environments is of particular importance to public health, emphasising the need for sewage treatment to minimise the environmental impacts associated with urbanisation.

  13. Diversity of cloacal microbial community in migratory shorebirds that use the Tagus estuary as stopover habitat and their potential to harbor and disperse pathogenic microorganisms.

    PubMed

    Santos, Susana S; Pardal, Sara; Proença, Diogo N; Lopes, Ricardo J; Ramos, Jaime A; Mendes, Luísa; Morais, Paula V

    2012-10-01

    The diversity of the cloacal microbial community in migratory shorebirds, caught at the Tagus estuary, Portugal, was assessed by cultivation (R2A and Nutrient Agar media) and denaturing gradient gel electrophoresis profiling (DGGE) to provide a better understanding of the birds' potential to harbor and disperse pathogens. Three different bird species belonging to four different populations were studied: common redshank (Tringa totanus), black-winged stilt (Himantopus himantopus) and nominate and Icelandic populations of black-tailed godwit (Limosa limosa). DGGE profiling and partial 16S RNA gene sequences of 240 isolates, and 26 DGGE bands resulting in 58 clones, were analyzed. Most isolates were members of the phylum Firmicutes and Actinobacteria and only a small portion belonged to the Proteobacteria and Deinococcus-Thermus phyla. Potentially pathogenic strains carried by the birds were found such as Helicobacter and Staphylococcus in all bird species, and Clostridium, Mycobacterium, Rhodococcus, Legionella and Corynebacterium in black-winged stilts. Unexpectedly, bacteria from the phylum Deinococcus-Thermus were isolated in shorebirds and were present in all the bird species studied.

  14. Microbial communities associated with wet flue gas desulfurization systems

    PubMed Central

    Brown, Bryan P.; Brown, Shannon R.; Senko, John M.

    2012-01-01

    Flue gas desulfurization (FGD) systems are employed to remove SOx gasses that are produced by the combustion of coal for electric power generation, and consequently limit acid rain associated with these activities. Wet FGDs represent a physicochemically extreme environment due to the high operating temperatures and total dissolved solids (TDS) of fluids in the interior of the FGD units. Despite the potential importance of microbial activities in the performance and operation of FGD systems, the microbial communities associated with them have not been evaluated. Microbial communities associated with distinct process points of FGD systems at several coal-fired electricity generation facilities were evaluated using culture-dependent and -independent approaches. Due to the high solute concentrations and temperatures in the FGD absorber units, culturable halothermophilic/tolerant bacteria were more abundant in samples collected from within the absorber units than in samples collected from the makeup waters that are used to replenish fluids inside the absorber units. Evaluation of bacterial 16S rRNA genes recovered from scale deposits on the walls of absorber units revealed that the microbial communities associated with these deposits are primarily composed of thermophilic bacterial lineages. These findings suggest that unique microbial communities develop in FGD systems in response to physicochemical characteristics of the different process points within the systems. The activities of the thermophilic microbial communities that develop within scale deposits could play a role in the corrosion of steel structures in FGD systems. PMID:23226147

  15. Microbial communities associated with wet flue gas desulfurization systems.

    PubMed

    Brown, Bryan P; Brown, Shannon R; Senko, John M

    2012-01-01

    Flue gas desulfurization (FGD) systems are employed to remove SO(x) gasses that are produced by the combustion of coal for electric power generation, and consequently limit acid rain associated with these activities. Wet FGDs represent a physicochemically extreme environment due to the high operating temperatures and total dissolved solids (TDS) of fluids in the interior of the FGD units. Despite the potential importance of microbial activities in the performance and operation of FGD systems, the microbial communities associated with them have not been evaluated. Microbial communities associated with distinct process points of FGD systems at several coal-fired electricity generation facilities were evaluated using culture-dependent and -independent approaches. Due to the high solute concentrations and temperatures in the FGD absorber units, culturable halothermophilic/tolerant bacteria were more abundant in samples collected from within the absorber units than in samples collected from the makeup waters that are used to replenish fluids inside the absorber units. Evaluation of bacterial 16S rRNA genes recovered from scale deposits on the walls of absorber units revealed that the microbial communities associated with these deposits are primarily composed of thermophilic bacterial lineages. These findings suggest that unique microbial communities develop in FGD systems in response to physicochemical characteristics of the different process points within the systems. The activities of the thermophilic microbial communities that develop within scale deposits could play a role in the corrosion of steel structures in FGD systems.

  16. Anthropogenic perturbations in marine microbial communities.

    PubMed

    Nogales, Balbina; Lanfranconi, Mariana P; Piña-Villalonga, Juana M; Bosch, Rafael

    2011-03-01

    Human activities impact marine ecosystems at a global scale and all levels of complexity of life. Despite their importance as key players in ecosystem processes, the stress caused to microorganisms has been greatly neglected. This fact is aggravated by difficulties in the analysis of microbial communities and their high diversity, making the definition of patterns difficult. In this review, we discuss the effects of nutrient increase, pollution by organic chemicals and heavy metals and the introduction of antibiotics and pathogens into the environment. Microbial communities respond positively to nutrients and chemical pollution by increasing cell numbers. There are also significant changes in community composition, increases in diversity and high temporal variability. These changes, which evidence the modification of the environmental conditions due to anthropogenic stress, usually alter community functionality, although this aspect has not been explored in depth. Altered microbial communities in human-impacted marine environments can in turn have detrimental effects on human health (i.e. spread of pathogens and antibiotic resistance). New threats to marine ecosystems, i.e. related to climate change, could also have an impact on microbial communities. Therefore, an effort dedicated to analyse the microbial compartment in detail should be made when studying the impact of anthropogenic activities on marine ecosystems.

  17. Nutrient addition dramatically accelerates microbial community succession.

    PubMed

    Knelman, Joseph E; Schmidt, Steven K; Lynch, Ryan C; Darcy, John L; Castle, Sarah C; Cleveland, Cory C; Nemergut, Diana R

    2014-01-01

    The ecological mechanisms driving community succession are widely debated, particularly for microorganisms. While successional soil microbial communities are known to undergo predictable changes in structure concomitant with shifts in a variety of edaphic properties, the causal mechanisms underlying these patterns are poorly understood. Thus, to specifically isolate how nutrients--important drivers of plant succession--affect soil microbial succession, we established a full factorial nitrogen (N) and phosphorus (P) fertilization plot experiment in recently deglaciated (∼3 years since exposure), unvegetated soils of the Puca Glacier forefield in Southeastern Peru. We evaluated soil properties and examined bacterial community composition in plots before and one year after fertilization. Fertilized soils were then compared to samples from three reference successional transects representing advancing stages of soil development ranging from 5 years to 85 years since exposure. We found that a single application of +NP fertilizer caused the soil bacterial community structure of the three-year old soils to most resemble the 85-year old soils after one year. Despite differences in a variety of soil edaphic properties between fertilizer plots and late successional soils, bacterial community composition of +NP plots converged with late successional communities. Thus, our work suggests a mechanism for microbial succession whereby changes in resource availability drive shifts in community composition, supporting a role for nutrient colimitation in primary succession. These results suggest that nutrients alone, independent of other edaphic factors that change with succession, act as an important control over soil microbial community development, greatly accelerating the rate of succession.

  18. The functional potential of microbial communities in hydraulic fracturing source water and produced water from natural gas extraction characterized by metagenomic sequencing

    SciTech Connect

    Mohan, Arvind Murali; Bibby, Kyle J.; Lipus, Daniel; Hammack, Richard W.; Gregory, Kelvin B.; Forster, Robert J.

    2014-10-22

    Microbial activity in produced water from hydraulic fracturing operations can lead to undesired environmental impacts and increase gas production costs. However, the metabolic profile of these microbial communities is not well understood. Here, for the first time, we present results from a shotgun metagenome of microbial communities in both hydraulic fracturing source water and wastewater produced by hydraulic fracturing. Taxonomic analyses showed an increase in anaerobic/facultative anaerobic classes related to Clostridia, Gammaproteobacteria, Bacteroidia and Epsilonproteobacteria in produced water as compared to predominantly aerobic Alphaproteobacteria in the fracturing source water. Thus, the metabolic profile revealed a relative increase in genes responsible for carbohydrate metabolism, respiration, sporulation and dormancy, iron acquisition and metabolism, stress response and sulfur metabolism in the produced water samples. These results suggest that microbial communities in produced water have an increased genetic ability to handle stress, which has significant implications for produced water management, such as disinfection.

  19. Interspecies Interactions within Oral Microbial Communities

    PubMed Central

    Kuramitsu, Howard K.; He, Xuesong; Lux, Renate; Anderson, Maxwell H.; Shi, Wenyuan

    2007-01-01

    Summary: While reductionism has greatly advanced microbiology in the past 400 years, assembly of smaller pieces just could not explain the whole! Modern microbiologists are learning “system thinking” and “holism.” Such an approach is changing our understanding of microbial physiology and our ability to diagnose/treat microbial infections. This review uses oral microbial communities as a focal point to describe this new trend. With the common name “dental plaque,” oral microbial communities are some of the most complex microbial floras in the human body, consisting of more than 700 different bacterial species. For a very long time, oral microbiologists endeavored to use reductionism to identify the key genes or key pathogens responsible for oral microbial pathogenesis. The limitations of reductionism forced scientists to begin adopting new strategies using emerging concepts such as interspecies interaction, microbial community, biofilms, polymicrobial disease, etc. These new research directions indicate that the whole is much more than the simple sum of its parts, since the interactions between different parts resulted in many new physiological functions which cannot be observed with individual components. This review describes some of these interesting interspecies-interaction scenarios. PMID:18063722

  20. Mathematical Modeling of Microbial Community Dynamics: A Methodological Review

    SciTech Connect

    Song, Hyun-Seob; Cannon, William R.; Beliaev, Alex S.; Konopka, Allan

    2014-10-17

    Microorganisms in nature form diverse communities that dynamically change in structure and function in response to environmental variations. As a complex adaptive system, microbial communities show higher-order properties that are not present in individual microbes, but arise from their interactions. Predictive mathematical models not only help to understand the underlying principles of the dynamics and emergent properties of natural and synthetic microbial communities, but also provide key knowledge required for engineering them. In this article, we provide an overview of mathematical tools that include not only current mainstream approaches, but also less traditional approaches that, in our opinion, can be potentially useful. We discuss a broad range of methods ranging from low-resolution supra-organismal to high-resolution individual-based modeling. Particularly, we highlight the integrative approaches that synergistically combine disparate methods. In conclusion, we provide our outlook for the key aspects that should be further developed to move microbial community modeling towards greater predictive power.

  1. Microbial community structure characteristics associated membrane fouling in A/O-MBR system.

    PubMed

    Gao, Da-Wen; Wen, Zhi-Dan; Li, Bao; Liang, Hong

    2014-02-01

    The study demonstrated the potential relationship between microbial community structure and membrane fouling in an anoxic-oxic membrane bioreactor (A/O-MBR). The results showed that the microbial community structure in biocake was different with aerobic mixture, and the dominant populations were out of sync during the fouling process. Based on microbial community structure and metabolites analysis, the results showed that the succession of microbial community might be the leading factor to the variation of metabolites, and it might be the primary cause of membrane fouling. The rise of Shannon diversity index (H) of the microbial community in A/O-MBR went with the gradually serious membrane fouling. Pareto-Lorenz curve was used to describe the evenness of microbial distribution in A/O-MBR, and the result indicated when community evenness was low, the membrane fouling took place smoothly or slightly, otherwise, high evenness of microbial community would lead to more seriously membrane fouling.

  2. Segregation of the Anodic Microbial Communities in a Microbial Fuel Cell Cascade

    PubMed Central

    Hodgson, Douglas M.; Smith, Ann; Dahale, Sonal; Stratford, James P.; Li, Jia V.; Grüning, André; Bushell, Michael E.; Marchesi, Julian R.; Avignone Rossa, C.

    2016-01-01

    Metabolic interactions within microbial communities are essential for the efficient degradation of complex organic compounds, and underpin natural phenomena driven by microorganisms, such as the recycling of carbon-, nitrogen-, and sulfur-containing molecules. These metabolic interactions ultimately determine the function, activity and stability of the community, and therefore their understanding would be essential to steer processes where microbial communities are involved. This is exploited in the design of microbial fuel cells (MFCs), bioelectrochemical devices that convert the chemical energy present in substrates into electrical energy through the metabolic activity of microorganisms, either single species or communities. In this work, we analyzed the evolution of the microbial community structure in a cascade of MFCs inoculated with an anaerobic microbial community and continuously fed with a complex medium. The analysis of the composition of the anodic communities revealed the establishment of different communities in the anodes of the hydraulically connected MFCs, with a decrease in the abundance of fermentative taxa and a concurrent increase in respiratory taxa along the cascade. The analysis of the metabolites in the anodic suspension showed a metabolic shift between the first and last MFC, confirming the segregation of the anodic communities. Those results suggest a metabolic interaction mechanism between the predominant fermentative bacteria at the first stages of the cascade and the anaerobic respiratory electrogenic population in the latter stages, which is reflected in the observed increase in power output. We show that our experimental system represents an ideal platform for optimization of processes where the degradation of complex substrates is involved, as well as a potential tool for the study of metabolic interactions in complex microbial communities. PMID:27242723

  3. Segregation of the Anodic Microbial Communities in a Microbial Fuel Cell Cascade.

    PubMed

    Hodgson, Douglas M; Smith, Ann; Dahale, Sonal; Stratford, James P; Li, Jia V; Grüning, André; Bushell, Michael E; Marchesi, Julian R; Avignone Rossa, C

    2016-01-01

    Metabolic interactions within microbial communities are essential for the efficient degradation of complex organic compounds, and underpin natural phenomena driven by microorganisms, such as the recycling of carbon-, nitrogen-, and sulfur-containing molecules. These metabolic interactions ultimately determine the function, activity and stability of the community, and therefore their understanding would be essential to steer processes where microbial communities are involved. This is exploited in the design of microbial fuel cells (MFCs), bioelectrochemical devices that convert the chemical energy present in substrates into electrical energy through the metabolic activity of microorganisms, either single species or communities. In this work, we analyzed the evolution of the microbial community structure in a cascade of MFCs inoculated with an anaerobic microbial community and continuously fed with a complex medium. The analysis of the composition of the anodic communities revealed the establishment of different communities in the anodes of the hydraulically connected MFCs, with a decrease in the abundance of fermentative taxa and a concurrent increase in respiratory taxa along the cascade. The analysis of the metabolites in the anodic suspension showed a metabolic shift between the first and last MFC, confirming the segregation of the anodic communities. Those results suggest a metabolic interaction mechanism between the predominant fermentative bacteria at the first stages of the cascade and the anaerobic respiratory electrogenic population in the latter stages, which is reflected in the observed increase in power output. We show that our experimental system represents an ideal platform for optimization of processes where the degradation of complex substrates is involved, as well as a potential tool for the study of metabolic interactions in complex microbial communities.

  4. Direct 16S rRNA-seq from bacterial communities: a PCR-independent approach to simultaneously assess microbial diversity and functional activity potential of each taxon

    PubMed Central

    Rosselli, Riccardo; Romoli, Ottavia; Vitulo, Nicola; Vezzi, Alessandro; Campanaro, Stefano; de Pascale, Fabio; Schiavon, Riccardo; Tiarca, Maurizio; Poletto, Fabio; Concheri, Giuseppe; Valle, Giorgio; Squartini, Andrea

    2016-01-01

    The analysis of environmental microbial communities has largely relied on a PCR-dependent amplification of genes entailing species identity as 16S rRNA. This approach is susceptible to biases depending on the level of primer matching in different species. Moreover, possible yet-to-discover taxa whose rRNA could differ enough from known ones would not be revealed. DNA-based methods moreover do not provide information on the actual physiological relevance of each taxon within an environment and are affected by the variable number of rRNA operons in different genomes. To overcome these drawbacks we propose an approach of direct sequencing of 16S ribosomal RNA without any primer- or PCR-dependent step. The method was tested on a microbial community developing in an anammox bioreactor sampled at different time-points. A conventional PCR-based amplicon pyrosequencing was run in parallel. The community resulting from direct rRNA sequencing was highly consistent with the known biochemical processes operative in the reactor. As direct rRNA-seq is based not only on taxon abundance but also on physiological activity, no comparison between its results and those from PCR-based approaches can be applied. The novel principle is in this respect proposed not as an alternative but rather as a complementary methodology in microbial community studies. PMID:27577787

  5. Metagenomic Analyses Reveal That Energy Transfer Gene Abundances Can Predict the Syntrophic Potential of Environmental Microbial Communities

    PubMed Central

    Oberding, Lisa; Gieg, Lisa M.

    2016-01-01

    Hydrocarbon compounds can be biodegraded by anaerobic microorganisms to form methane through an energetically interdependent metabolic process known as syntrophy. The microorganisms that perform this process as well as the energy transfer mechanisms involved are difficult to study and thus are still poorly understood, especially on an environmental scale. Here, metagenomic data was analyzed for specific clusters of orthologous groups (COGs) related to key energy transfer genes thus far identified in syntrophic bacteria, and principal component analysis was used in order to determine whether potentially syntrophic environments could be distinguished using these syntroph related COGs as opposed to universally present COGs. We found that COGs related to hydrogenase and formate dehydrogenase genes were able to distinguish known syntrophic consortia and environments with the potential for syntrophy from non-syntrophic environments, indicating that these COGs could be used as a tool to identify syntrophic hydrocarbon biodegrading environments using metagenomic data. PMID:27681901

  6. Syntrophic exchange in synthetic microbial communities

    PubMed Central

    Mee, Michael T.; Collins, James J.; Church, George M.; Wang, Harris H.

    2014-01-01

    Metabolic crossfeeding is an important process that can broadly shape microbial communities. However, little is known about specific crossfeeding principles that drive the formation and maintenance of individuals within a mixed population. Here, we devised a series of synthetic syntrophic communities to probe the complex interactions underlying metabolic exchange of amino acids. We experimentally analyzed multimember, multidimensional communities of Escherichia coli of increasing sophistication to assess the outcomes of synergistic crossfeeding. We find that biosynthetically costly amino acids including methionine, lysine, isoleucine, arginine, and aromatics, tend to promote stronger cooperative interactions than amino acids that are cheaper to produce. Furthermore, cells that share common intermediates along branching pathways yielded more synergistic growth, but exhibited many instances of both positive and negative epistasis when these interactions scaled to higher dimensions. In more complex communities, we find certain members exhibiting keystone species-like behavior that drastically impact the community dynamics. Based on comparative genomic analysis of >6,000 sequenced bacteria from diverse environments, we present evidence suggesting that amino acid biosynthesis has been broadly optimized to reduce individual metabolic burden in favor of enhanced crossfeeding to support synergistic growth across the biosphere. These results improve our basic understanding of microbial syntrophy while also highlighting the utility and limitations of current modeling approaches to describe the dynamic complexities underlying microbial ecosystems. This work sets the foundation for future endeavors to resolve key questions in microbial ecology and evolution, and presents a platform to develop better and more robust engineered synthetic communities for industrial biotechnology. PMID:24778240

  7. Does iron inhibit cryptoendolithic microbial communities?

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Johnston, C. G.; Vestal, J. R.; Friedmann, E. I. (Principal Investigator)

    1988-01-01

    Photosynthetic activity of three cryptoendolithic microbial communities was studied under controlled conditions in the laboratory. In two of these communities, the dominant organisms were lichens, collected from Linnaeus Terrace and from Battleship Promontory. The third community, dominated by cyanobacteria, was collected from Battleship Promontory. Both sites are in the ice-free valleys of southern Victoria Land. Previous efforts have shown how physical conditions can influence metabolic activity in endolithic communities (Kappen and Friedmann 1983; Kappen, Friedmann, and Garty 1981; Vestal, Federle, and Friedmann 1984). Biological activity can also be strongly influenced by the chemical environment. Inorganic nutrients such as nitrate, ammonia, and phosphate are often limiting factors, so their effects on photosynthetic carbon-14 bicarbonate incorporation were investigated. Iron and manganese are two metals present in Linnaeus Terrace and Battleship Promontory sandstones, and their effects on photosynthesis were also studied. The results may add to our understanding of biogeochemical interactions within this unique microbial community.

  8. Response of a salt marsh microbial community to metal contamination

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mucha, Ana P.; Teixeira, Catarina; Reis, Izabela; Magalhães, Catarina; Bordalo, Adriano A.; Almeida, C. Marisa R.

    2013-09-01

    Salt marshes are important sinks for contaminants, namely metals that tend to accumulate around plant roots and could eventually be taken up in a process known as phytoremediation. On the other hand, microbial communities display important roles in the salt marsh ecosystems, such as recycling of nutrients and/or degradation of organic contaminants. Thus, plants can benefit from the microbial activity in the phytoremediation process. Nevertheless, above certain levels, metals are known to be toxic to microorganisms, fact that can eventually compromise their ecological functions. In this vein, the aim of present study was to investigate, in the laboratory, the effect of selected metals (Cd, Cu and Pb) on the microbial communities associated to the roots of two salt marsh plants. Sediments colonized by Juncus maritimus and Phragmites australis were collected in the River Lima estuary (NW Portugal), and spiked with each of the metals at three different Effects Range-Median (ERM) concentrations (1, 10×, 50×), being ERM the sediment quality guideline that indicates the concentration above which adverse biological effects may frequently occur. Spiked sediments were incubated with a nutritive saline solution, being left in the dark under constant agitation for 7 days. The results showed that, despite the initial sediments colonized by J. maritimus and P. australis displayed significant (p < 0.05) differences in terms of microbial community structure (evaluated by ARISA), they presented similar microbial abundances (estimated by DAPI). Also, in terms of microbial abundance, both sediments showed a similar response to metal addition, with a decrease in number of cells only observed for the higher addition of Cu. Nevertheless, both Cu and Pb, at intermediate metals levels promote a shift in the microbial community structure, with possibly effect on the ecological function of these microbial communities in salt marshes. These changes may affect plants phytoremediation

  9. Predominant Acidilobus-Like Populations from Geothermal Environments in Yellowstone National Park Exhibit Similar Metabolic Potential in Different Hypoxic Microbial Communities

    PubMed Central

    Jay, Z. J.; Rusch, D. B.; Tringe, S. G.; Bailey, C.; Jennings, R. M.

    2014-01-01

    High-temperature (>70°C) ecosystems in Yellowstone National Park (YNP) provide an unparalleled opportunity to study chemotrophic archaea and their role in microbial community structure and function under highly constrained geochemical conditions. Acidilobus spp. (order Desulfurococcales) comprise one of the dominant phylotypes in hypoxic geothermal sulfur sediment and Fe(III)-oxide environments along with members of the Thermoproteales and Sulfolobales. Consequently, the primary goals of the current study were to analyze and compare replicate de novo sequence assemblies of Acidilobus-like populations from four different mildly acidic (pH 3.3 to 6.1) high-temperature (72°C to 82°C) environments and to identify metabolic pathways and/or protein-encoding genes that provide a detailed foundation of the potential functional role of these populations in situ. De novo assemblies of the highly similar Acidilobus-like populations (>99% 16S rRNA gene identity) represent near-complete consensus genomes based on an inventory of single-copy genes, deduced metabolic potential, and assembly statistics generated across sites. Functional analysis of coding sequences and confirmation of gene transcription by Acidilobus-like populations provide evidence that they are primarily chemoorganoheterotrophs, generating acetyl coenzyme A (acetyl-CoA) via the degradation of carbohydrates, lipids, and proteins, and auxotrophic with respect to several external vitamins, cofactors, and metabolites. No obvious pathways or protein-encoding genes responsible for the dissimilatory reduction of sulfur were identified. The presence of a formate dehydrogenase (Fdh) and other protein-encoding genes involved in mixed-acid fermentation supports the hypothesis that Acidilobus spp. function as degraders of complex organic constituents in high-temperature, mildly acidic, hypoxic geothermal systems. PMID:24162572

  10. Predominant Acidilobus-like populations from geothermal environments in yellowstone national park exhibit similar metabolic potential in different hypoxic microbial communities.

    PubMed

    Jay, Z J; Rusch, D B; Tringe, S G; Bailey, C; Jennings, R M; Inskeep, W P

    2014-01-01

    High-temperature (>70°C) ecosystems in Yellowstone National Park (YNP) provide an unparalleled opportunity to study chemotrophic archaea and their role in microbial community structure and function under highly constrained geochemical conditions. Acidilobus spp. (order Desulfurococcales) comprise one of the dominant phylotypes in hypoxic geothermal sulfur sediment and Fe(III)-oxide environments along with members of the Thermoproteales and Sulfolobales. Consequently, the primary goals of the current study were to analyze and compare replicate de novo sequence assemblies of Acidilobus-like populations from four different mildly acidic (pH 3.3 to 6.1) high-temperature (72°C to 82°C) environments and to identify metabolic pathways and/or protein-encoding genes that provide a detailed foundation of the potential functional role of these populations in situ. De novo assemblies of the highly similar Acidilobus-like populations (>99% 16S rRNA gene identity) represent near-complete consensus genomes based on an inventory of single-copy genes, deduced metabolic potential, and assembly statistics generated across sites. Functional analysis of coding sequences and confirmation of gene transcription by Acidilobus-like populations provide evidence that they are primarily chemoorganoheterotrophs, generating acetyl coenzyme A (acetyl-CoA) via the degradation of carbohydrates, lipids, and proteins, and auxotrophic with respect to several external vitamins, cofactors, and metabolites. No obvious pathways or protein-encoding genes responsible for the dissimilatory reduction of sulfur were identified. The presence of a formate dehydrogenase (Fdh) and other protein-encoding genes involved in mixed-acid fermentation supports the hypothesis that Acidilobus spp. function as degraders of complex organic constituents in high-temperature, mildly acidic, hypoxic geothermal systems.

  11. Stable microbial community composition on the Greenland Ice Sheet

    PubMed Central

    Musilova, Michaela; Tranter, Martyn; Bennett, Sarah A.; Wadham, Jemma; Anesio, Alexandre M.

    2015-01-01

    The first molecular-based studies of microbes in snow and on glaciers have only recently been performed on the vast Greenland Ice Sheet (GrIS). Aeolian microbial seeding is hypothesized to impact on glacier surface community compositions. Localized melting of glacier debris (cryoconite) into the surface ice forms cryoconite holes, which are considered ‘hot spots’ for microbial activity on glaciers. To date, few studies have attempted to assess the origin and evolution of cryoconite and cryoconite hole communities throughout a melt season. In this study, a range of experimental approaches was used for the first time to study the inputs, temporal and structural transformations of GrIS microbial communities over the course of a whole ablation season. Small amounts of aeolian (wind and snow) microbes were potentially seeding the stable communities that were already present on the glacier (composed mainly of Proteobacteria, Cyanobacteria, and Actinobacteria). However, the dominant bacterial taxa in the aeolian samples (Firmicutes) did not establish themselves in local glacier surface communities. Cryoconite and cryoconite hole community composition remained stable throughout the ablation season following the fast community turnover, which accompanied the initial snow melt. The presence of stable communities in cryoconite and cryoconite holes on the GrIS will allow future studies to assess glacier surface microbial diversity at individual study sites from sampling intervals of short duration only. Aeolian inputs also had significantly different organic δ13C values (-28.0 to -27.0‰) from the glacier surface values (-25.7 to -23.6‰), indicating that in situ microbial processes are important in fixing new organic matter and transforming aeolian organic carbon. The continuous productivity of stable communities over one melt season makes them important contributors to biogeochemical nutrient cycling on glaciers. PMID:25852658

  12. Stable microbial community composition on the Greenland Ice Sheet.

    PubMed

    Musilova, Michaela; Tranter, Martyn; Bennett, Sarah A; Wadham, Jemma; Anesio, Alexandre M

    2015-01-01

    The first molecular-based studies of microbes in snow and on glaciers have only recently been performed on the vast Greenland Ice Sheet (GrIS). Aeolian microbial seeding is hypothesized to impact on glacier surface community compositions. Localized melting of glacier debris (cryoconite) into the surface ice forms cryoconite holes, which are considered 'hot spots' for microbial activity on glaciers. To date, few studies have attempted to assess the origin and evolution of cryoconite and cryoconite hole communities throughout a melt season. In this study, a range of experimental approaches was used for the first time to study the inputs, temporal and structural transformations of GrIS microbial communities over the course of a whole ablation season. Small amounts of aeolian (wind and snow) microbes were potentially seeding the stable communities that were already present on the glacier (composed mainly of Proteobacteria, Cyanobacteria, and Actinobacteria). However, the dominant bacterial taxa in the aeolian samples (Firmicutes) did not establish themselves in local glacier surface communities. Cryoconite and cryoconite hole community composition remained stable throughout the ablation season following the fast community turnover, which accompanied the initial snow melt. The presence of stable communities in cryoconite and cryoconite holes on the GrIS will allow future studies to assess glacier surface microbial diversity at individual study sites from sampling intervals of short duration only. Aeolian inputs also had significantly different organic δ(13)C values (-28.0 to -27.0‰) from the glacier surface values (-25.7 to -23.6‰), indicating that in situ microbial processes are important in fixing new organic matter and transforming aeolian organic carbon. The continuous productivity of stable communities over one melt season makes them important contributors to biogeochemical nutrient cycling on glaciers.

  13. Microbial communities adhering to the obverse and reverse sides of an oil painting on canvas: identification and evaluation of their biodegradative potential.

    PubMed

    López-Miras, M; Piñar, G; Romero-Noguera, J; Bolívar-Galiano, F C; Ettenauer, J; Sterflinger, K; Martín-Sánchez, I

    2013-06-01

    In this study, we investigated and compared the microbial communities adhering to the obverse and the reverse sides of an oil painting on canvas exhibiting signs of biodeterioration. Samples showing no visible damage were investigated as controls. Air samples were also analysed, in order to investigate the presence of airborne microorganisms suspended in the indoor atmosphere. The diversity of the cultivable microorganisms adhering to the surface was analysed by molecular techniques, such as RAPD analysis and gene sequencing. DGGE fingerprints derived from DNA directly extracted from canvas material in combination with clone libraries and sequencing were used to evaluate the non-cultivable fraction of the microbial communities associated with the material. By using culture-dependent methods, most of the bacterial strains were found to be common airborne, spore-forming microorganisms and belonged to the phyla Actinobacteria and Firmicutes, whereas culture-independent techniques identified sequenced clones affiliated with members of the phyla Actinobacteria and Proteobacteria. The diversity of fungi was shown to be much lower than that observed for bacteria, and only species of Penicillium spp. could be detected by cultivation techniques. The selected strategy revealed a higher microbial diversity on the obverse than on the reverse side of the painting and the near absence of actively growing microorganisms on areas showing no visible damage. Furthermore, enzymatic activity tests revealed that the most widespread activities involved in biodeterioration were esterase and esterase lipase among the isolated bacterial strains, and esterase and N-acetyl-β-glucosaminidase among fungi strains.

  14. Method for analyzing microbial communities

    DOEpatents

    Zhou, Jizhong [Oak Ridge, TN; Wu, Liyou [Oak Ridge, TN

    2010-07-20

    The present invention provides a method for quantitatively analyzing microbial genes, species, or strains in a sample that contains at least two species or strains of microorganisms. The method involves using an isothermal DNA polymerase to randomly and representatively amplify genomic DNA of the microorganisms in the sample, hybridizing the resultant polynucleotide amplification product to a polynucleotide microarray that can differentiate different genes, species, or strains of microorganisms of interest, and measuring hybridization signals on the microarray to quantify the genes, species, or strains of interest.

  15. [Potential Carbon Fixation Capability of Non-photosynthetic Microbial Community at Different Depth of the South China Sea and Its Response to Different Electron Donors].

    PubMed

    Fang, Feng; Wang, Lei; Xi, Xue-fei; Hu, Jia-jun; Fu, Xiao-hua; Lu, Bing; Xu, Dian-sheng

    2015-05-01

    The seawater samples collected from many different areas with different depth in the South China Sea were cultivated using different electron donors respectively. And the variation in the potential carbon fixation capability ( PCFC ) of non-photosynthetic microbial community (NPMC) in seawater with different depth was determined after a cycle of cultivation through the statistic analysis. In addition, the cause for the variation was clarified through analyzing key gene abundance regarding CO2 fixation and characteristics of seawater with different depth. The result showed that the PCFCs of NPMC in seawater with different depth were generally low and had no significant difference when using NaNO2 as the electron donor. The PCFC of NPMC in surface seawater was higher than that in deep seawater when using H2 as the electron donor, on the contrary, the PCFC of NPMC in deep seawater was higher than that in surface seawater when using Na2S2O3 as the electron donor. The abundance of the main CO2 fixation gene cbbL in surface seawater was higher than that in deep seawater while the cbbM gene abundance in deep seawater was higher than that in surface seawater. Most hydrogen-oxidizing bacteria had the cbbL gene, and most sulfur bacteria had the cbbM gene. The tendency of seawater cbbL/cbbM gene abundance with the change of depth revealed that there were different kinds of bacteria accounting for the majority in NPMC fixing CO2 at different depth of ocean, which led to different response of PCFC of NPMC at different depth of the sea to different electron donors. The distributions of dissolved oxygen and inorganic carbon concentration with the change of the depth of the sea might be an important reason leading to the difference of NPMC structure and even the difference of PCFC at different depth of the sea.

  16. Modeling adaptation of carbon use efficiency in microbial communities.

    PubMed

    Allison, Steven D

    2014-01-01

    In new microbial-biogeochemical models, microbial carbon use efficiency (CUE) is often assumed to decline with increasing temperature. Under this assumption, soil carbon losses under warming are small because microbial biomass declines. Yet there is also empirical evidence that CUE may adapt (i.e., become less sensitive) to warming, thereby mitigating negative effects on microbial biomass. To analyze potential mechanisms of CUE adaptation, I used two theoretical models to implement a tradeoff between microbial uptake rate and CUE. This rate-yield tradeoff is based on thermodynamic principles and suggests that microbes with greater investment in resource acquisition should have lower CUE. Microbial communities or individuals could adapt to warming by reducing investment in enzymes and uptake machinery. Consistent with this idea, a simple analytical model predicted that adaptation can offset 50% of the warming-induced decline in CUE. To assess the ecosystem implications of the rate-yield tradeoff, I quantified CUE adaptation in a spatially-structured simulation model with 100 microbial taxa and 12 soil carbon substrates. This model predicted much lower CUE adaptation, likely due to additional physiological and ecological constraints on microbes. In particular, specific resource acquisition traits are needed to maintain stoichiometric balance, and taxa with high CUE and low enzyme investment rely on low-yield, high-enzyme neighbors to catalyze substrate degradation. In contrast to published microbial models, simulations with greater CUE adaptation also showed greater carbon storage under warming. This pattern occurred because microbial communities with stronger CUE adaptation produced fewer degradative enzymes, despite increases in biomass. Thus, the rate-yield tradeoff prevents CUE adaptation from driving ecosystem carbon loss under climate warming.

  17. From microbial communities to cells

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Margulis, L.

    1985-01-01

    The eukraotic cell, the unit of structure of protoctists, plants, fungi, and animals, is not at all homologous to prokaryotic cells. Instead the eukaryotic cell is homologous to communities of microorganisms such as those of the sulfuretum. This research is based on the hypothesis that at least four different interacting community members entered the original associations that, when stabilized, led to the emergence of eukaryotic cells. These are: (1) host nucleocytoplasm (thermoplasma like archaebacteria); (2) mitochrondria (paracoccus or bdellovibryo like respiring bacteria; and (3) plastids (cyanobacteria) and undulipodia. Tubulin like protein was found in the free living spirochete Spirochaeta bajacaliforniensis and in several other spirochetes. The amino acid sequence was to see if the spirochete protein is homologous to the tubulin of undulipodial and mitotic spindle microtubules.

  18. Aspects of Diversity Measurement for Microbial Communities

    PubMed Central

    Mills, Aaron L.; Wassel, Raymond A.

    1980-01-01

    A useful measure of diversity was calculated for microbial communities collected from lake water and sediment samples using the Shannon index (H′) and rarefaction [E(S)]. Isolates were clustered by a numerical taxonomy approach in which limited (<20) tests were used so that the groups obtained represented a level of resolution other than species. The numerical value of diversity for each sample was affected by the number of tests used; however, the relative diversity compared among several sampling locations was the same whether 11 or 19 characters were examined. The number of isolates (i.e., sample size) strongly influenced the value of H′ so that unequal sized samples could not be compared. Rarefaction accounts for differences in sample size inherently so that such comparisons are made simple. Due to the type of sampling carried out by microbiologists, H′ is estimated and not determined and therefore requires a statement of error associated with it. Failure to report error provided potentially misleading results. Calculation of the variance of H′ is not a simple matter and may be impossible when handling a large number of samples. With rarefaction, the variance of E(S) is readily determined, facilitating the comparison of many samples. PMID:16345636

  19. A Comparison of Microbial Communities from Deep Igneous Crust

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Smith, A. R.; Flores, G. E.; Fisk, M. R.; Colwell, F. S.; Thurber, A. R.; Mason, O. U.; Popa, R.

    2013-12-01

    Recent investigations of life in Earth's crust have revealed common themes in organism function, taxonomy, and diversity. Capacities for hydrogen oxidation, carbon fixation, methanogenesis and methanotrophy, iron and sulfur metabolisms, and hydrocarbon degradation often predominate in deep life communities, and crustal mineralogy has been hypothesized as a driving force for determining deep life community assemblages. Recently, we found that minerals characteristic of the igneous crust harbored unique communities when incubated in the Juan de Fuca Ridge flank borehole IODP 1301A. Here we present attached mineral biofilm morphologies and a comparison of our mineral communities to those from a variety of locations, contamination states, and igneous crustal or mineralogical types. We found that differences in borehole mineral communities were reflected in biofilm morphologies. Olivine biofilms were thick, carbon-rich films with embedded cells of uniform size and shape and often contained secondary minerals. Encrusted cells, spherical and rod-shaped cells, and tubes were indicative of glass surfaces. We also found that the attached communities from incubated borehole minerals were taxonomically more similar to native, attached communities from marine and continental crust than to communities from the aquifer water that seeded it. Our findings further support the hypothesis that mineralogy selects for microbial communities that have distinct phylogenetic, morphological, and potentially functional, signatures. This has important implications for resolving ecosystem function and microbial distributions in igneous crust, the largest deep habitat on Earth.

  20. The dynamic genetic repertoire of microbial communities

    PubMed Central

    Wilmes, Paul; Simmons, Sheri L; Denef, Vincent J; Banfield, Jillian F

    2009-01-01

    Community genomic data have revealed multiple levels of variation between and within microbial consortia. This variation includes large-scale differences in gene content between ecosystems as well as within-population sequence heterogeneity. In the present review, we focus specifically on how fine-scale variation within microbial and viral populations is apparent from community genomic data. A major unresolved question is how much of the observed variation is due to neutral vs. adaptive processes. Limited experimental data hint that some of this fine-scale variation may be in part functionally relevant, whereas sequence-based and modeling analyses suggest that much of it may be neutral. While methods for interpreting population genomic data are still in their infancy, we discuss current interpretations of existing datasets in the light of evolutionary processes and models. Finally, we highlight the importance of virus–host dynamics in generating and shaping within-population diversity. PMID:19054116

  1. Effectiveness of ecological rescue for altered soil microbial communities and functions.

    PubMed

    Calderón, Kadiya; Spor, Aymé; Breuil, Marie-Christine; Bru, David; Bizouard, Florian; Violle, Cyrille; Barnard, Romain L; Philippot, Laurent

    2017-01-01

    Soil ecosystems worldwide are subjected to marked modifications caused by anthropogenic disturbances and global climate change, resulting in microbial diversity loss and alteration of ecosystem functions. Despite the paucity of studies, restoration ecology provides an appropriate framework for testing the potential of manipulating soil microbial communities for the recovery of ecosystem functioning. We used a reciprocal transplant design in experimentally altered microbial communities to investigate the effectiveness of introducing microbial communities in degraded soil ecosystems to restore N-cycle functioning. Microbial diversity loss resulted in alternative compositional states associated with impaired N-cycle functioning. Here, the addition of complex microbial communities to these altered communities revealed a pivotal role of deterministic community assembly processes. The diversity of some alternative compositional states was successfully increased but without significant restoration of soil N-cycle functioning. However, in the most degraded alternative state, the introduction of new microbial communities caused an overall decrease in phylogenetic diversity and richness. The successful soil colonization by newly introduced species for some compositional states indicates that priority effects could be overridden when attempting to manipulate microbial communities for soil restoration. Altogether, our result showed consistent patterns within restoration treatments with minor idiosyncratic effects. This suggests the predominance of deterministic processes and the predictability of restoration trajectories, which could be used to guide the effective management of microbial community assemblages for ecological restoration of soils.

  2. Understanding Bacteriophage Specificity in Natural Microbial Communities

    PubMed Central

    Koskella, Britt; Meaden, Sean

    2013-01-01

    Studying the coevolutionary dynamics between bacteria and the bacteriophage viruses that infect them is critical to understanding both microbial diversity and ecosystem functioning. Phages can play a key role in shaping bacterial population dynamics and can significantly alter both intra- and inter-specific competition among bacterial hosts. Predicting how phages might influence community stability and apparent competition, however, requires an understanding of how bacteria-phage interaction networks evolve as a function of host diversity and community dynamics. Here, we first review the progress that has been made in understanding phage specificity, including the use of experimental evolution, we then introduce a new dataset on natural bacteriophages collected from the phyllosphere of horse chestnut trees, and finally we highlight that bacterial sensitivity to phage is rarely a binary trait and that this variation should be taken into account and reported. We emphasize that there is currently insufficient evidence to make broad generalizations about phage host range in natural populations, the limits of phage adaptation to novel hosts, or the implications of phage specificity in shaping microbial communities. However, the combination of experimental and genomic approaches with the study of natural communities will allow new insight to the evolution and impact of phage specificity within complex bacterial communities. PMID:23478639

  3. Metabarcoding of the kombucha microbial community grown in different microenvironments.

    PubMed

    Reva, Oleg N; Zaets, Iryna E; Ovcharenko, Leonid P; Kukharenko, Olga E; Shpylova, Switlana P; Podolich, Olga V; de Vera, Jean-Pierre; Kozyrovska, Natalia O

    2015-12-01

    Introducing of the DNA metabarcoding analysis of probiotic microbial communities allowed getting insight into their functioning and establishing a better control on safety and efficacy of the probiotic communities. In this work the kombucha poly-microbial probiotic community was analysed to study its flexibility under different growth conditions. Environmental DNA sequencing revealed a complex and flexible composition of the kombucha microbial culture (KMC) constituting more bacterial and fungal organisms in addition to those found by cultural method. The community comprised bacterial and yeast components including cultured and uncultivable microorganisms. Culturing the KMC under different conditions revealed the core part of the community which included acetobacteria of two genera Komagataeibacter (former Gluconacetobacter) and Gluconobacter, and representatives of several yeast genera among which Brettanomyces/Dekkera and Pichia (including former Issatchenkia) were dominant. Herbaspirillum spp. and Halomonas spp., which previously had not been described in KMC, were found to be minor but permanent members of the community. The community composition was dependent on the growth conditions. The bacterial component of KMC was relatively stable, but may include additional member-lactobacilli. The yeast species composition was significantly variable. High-throughput sequencing showed complexity and variability of KMC that may affect the quality of the probiotic drink. It was hypothesized that the kombucha core community might recruit some environmental bacteria, particularly lactobacilli, which potentially may contribute to the fermentative capacity of the probiotic drink. As many KMC-associated microorganisms cannot be cultured out of the community, a robust control for community composition should be provided by using DNA metabarcoding.

  4. Investigating the Response of Microbial Communities to Cyclodextrin

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Szponar, N.; Slater, G.; Smith, J.

    2009-05-01

    Recent studies have found applications of hydroxypropyl-β-cyclodextrin (HPβCD) to be highly effective in removing DDT from soils in situ. However, the persistence of HPβCD within the soil and its impact on soil microbial communities is still unclear. It has been suggested that cyclodextrin might provide a substrate for microbial communities resulting in changes in the ongoing effectiveness of remediation and/or soil hydraulic properties. The potential exists that stimulation of the soil microbial community may contribute to removal of DDT, along with the solubilization effects normally associated with cyclodextrin treatment. This study investigated the response of soil microbial communities from a site undergoing remediation of DDT with HPβCD through microcosm and bench scale column studies. Phospholipid fatty acid (PLFA) analysis and their natural abundance 13C signatures can be used to identify in situ microbial metabolism of HPβCD. Heterotrophic organisms have PLFA with 13C signatures 3 to 6‰ depleted from their carbon source. Cyclodextrin was found to have a δ13C of -16‰ resulting from its formation via enzymatic degradation of cornstarch. In contrast, soil organic matter, had a predominantly C3 plant derived signature and a δ13C of -25‰. Incorporation of HPβCD by soil microbial communities would therefore cause a shift to a more enriched isotopic value. While microcosm studies demonstrated no noticeable change in biomass and few changes in PLFA distribution, column studies treated with a 10% solution of HPβCD demonstrated an approximate doubling of microbial biomass after 6 weeks of application based on PLFA concentrations. Concurrent changes in PLFA distribution further indicated a response to cyclodextrin. Changes in PLFA concentration and distribution were concurrent with isotopic enrichment of PLFA in treated columns. This isotopic enrichment provided direct evidence for microbial consumption of cyclodextrin. Incorporation of 13C enriched

  5. Microbial communities of printing paper machines.

    PubMed

    Väisänen, O M; Weber, A; Bennasar, A; Rainey, F A; Busse, H J; Salkinoja-Salonen, M S

    1998-06-01

    The microbial content of printing paper machines, running at a temperature of 45-50 degrees C and at pH 4.5-5, was studied. Bacteria were prevalent colonizers of the machine wet end and the raw materials. A total of 390 strains of aerobic bacteria were isolated and 86% of these were identified to genus and species by biochemical, chemotaxonomic and phylogenetic methods. The most common bacteria found at the machine wet end were Bacillus coagulans and other Bacillus species, Burkholderia cepacia, Ralstonia pickettii, and in pink slimes, accumulating in the wire area and press section, species of Deinococcus, aureobacterium and Brevibacterium. Paper-making chemicals also contained species of Aureobacterium, B. cereus, B. licheniformis, B. sphaericus, Bordetella, Hydrogenophaga, Klebsiella pneumoniae, Pantoea agglomerans, Pseudomonas stutzeri, Staphylococcus and sometimes other enteric bacteria, but these did not colonize the process water. Yeasts and moulds were not present in significant numbers. A total of 131 strains were tested for their potential to degrade paper-making raw materials; 91 strains were found to have degradative activity, mainly species of Burkholderia and Ralstonia, Sphingomonas and Bacillus, and enterobacteria produced enzymes which degraded paper-making chemicals. Stainless steel adhering strains occurred in slimes and wire water and were identified as Burkholderia cepacia, B. coagulans and Deinococcus geothermalis. Coloured slimes were formed on the machine by species of Deinococcus, Acinetobacter and Methylobacterium (pink), Aureobacterium, Pantoea and Ralstonia (yellowish) and Microbulbifer-related strains (brown). The impact of the strains and species found in the printing paper machine community on the technical quality of paper, machine operation, and as a potential biohazard (Hazard Group 2 bacteria), is discussed.

  6. Environmental microarray analyses of Antarctic soil microbial communities.

    PubMed

    Yergeau, Etienne; Schoondermark-Stolk, Sung A; Brodie, Eoin L; Déjean, Sébastien; DeSantis, Todd Z; Gonçalves, Olivier; Piceno, Yvette M; Andersen, Gary L; Kowalchuk, George A

    2009-03-01

    Antarctic ecosystems are fascinating in their limited trophic complexity, with decomposition and nutrient cycling functions being dominated by microbial activities. Not only are Antarctic habitats exposed to extreme environmental conditions, the Antarctic Peninsula is also experiencing unequalled effects of global warming. Owing to their uniqueness and the potential impact of global warming on these pristine systems, there is considerable interest in determining the structure and function of microbial communities in the Antarctic. We therefore utilized a recently designed 16S rRNA gene microarray, the PhyloChip, which targets 8741 bacterial and archaeal taxa, to interrogate microbial communities inhabiting densely vegetated and bare fell-field soils along a latitudinal gradient ranging from 51 degrees S (Falkland Islands) to 72 degrees S (Coal Nunatak). Results indicated a clear decrease in diversity with increasing latitude, with the two southernmost sites harboring the most distinct Bacterial and Archaeal communities. The microarray approach proved more sensitive in detecting the breadth of microbial diversity than polymerase chain reaction-based bacterial 16S rRNA gene libraries of modest size ( approximately 190 clones per library). Furthermore, the relative signal intensities summed for phyla and families on the PhyloChip were significantly correlated with the relative occurrence of these taxa in clone libraries. PhyloChip data were also compared with functional gene microarray data obtained earlier, highlighting numerous significant relationships and providing evidence for a strong link between community composition and functional gene distribution in Antarctic soils. Integration of these PhyloChip data with other complementary methods provides an unprecedented understanding of the microbial diversity and community structure of terrestrial Antarctic habitats.

  7. Metagenome of an Anaerobic Microbial Community Decomposing Poplar Wood Chips

    SciTech Connect

    van der Lelie, D.; Taghavi, S.; McCorkle, S. M.; Li, L. L.; Malfatti, S. A.; Monteleone, D.; Donohoe, B. S.; Ding, S. Y.; Adney, W. S.; Himmel, M. E.; Tringe, S. G.

    2012-05-01

    This study describes the composition and metabolic potential of a lignocellulosic biomass degrading community that decays poplar wood chips under anaerobic conditions. We examined the community that developed on poplar biomass in a non-aerated bioreactor over the course of a year, with no microbial inoculation other than the naturally occurring organisms on the woody material. The composition of this community contrasts in important ways with biomass-degrading communities associated with higher organisms, which have evolved over millions of years into a symbiotic relationship. Both mammalian and insect hosts provide partial size reduction, chemical treatments (low or high pH environments), and complex enzymatic 'secretomes' that improve microbial access to cell wall polymers. We hypothesized that in order to efficiently degrade coarse untreated biomass, a spontaneously assembled free-living community must both employ alternative strategies, such as enzymatic lignin depolymerization, for accessing hemicellulose and cellulose and have a much broader metabolic potential than host-associated communities. This would suggest that such a community would make a valuable resource for finding new catalytic functions involved in biomass decomposition and gaining new insight into the poorly understood process of anaerobic lignin depolymerization. Therefore, in addition to determining the major players in this community, our work specifically aimed at identifying functions potentially involved in the depolymerization of cellulose, hemicelluloses, and lignin, and to assign specific roles to the prevalent community members in the collaborative process of biomass decomposition. A bacterium similar to Magnetospirillum was identified among the dominant community members, which could play a key role in the anaerobic breakdown of aromatic compounds. We suggest that these compounds are released from the lignin fraction in poplar hardwood during the decay process, which would point to

  8. ANALYSIS OF AQUATIC MICROBIAL COMMUNITIES IMPACTED BY LARGE POULTRY FORMS

    EPA Science Inventory

    Microbial communities often respond more rapidly and extensively to environmental change than communities of higher organisms. Thus, characterizing shifts in the structure of native bacterial communities as a response to changes in nutrients, antimicrobials, and invading pathogen...

  9. Microbial Communities in Pre-Columbian Coprolites

    PubMed Central

    Santiago-Rodriguez, Tasha M.; Narganes-Storde, Yvonne M.; Chanlatte, Luis; Crespo-Torres, Edwin; Toranzos, Gary A.; Jimenez-Flores, Rafael; Hamrick, Alice; Cano, Raul J.

    2013-01-01

    The study of coprolites from earlier cultures represents a great opportunity to study an “unaltered” composition of the intestinal microbiota. To test this, pre-Columbian coprolites from two cultures, the Huecoid and Saladoid, were evaluated for the presence of DNA, proteins and lipids by cytochemical staining, human and/or dog-specific Bacteroides spp. by PCR, as well as bacteria, fungi and archaea using Terminal Restriction Fragment analyses. DNA, proteins and lipids, and human-specific Bacteroides DNA were detected in all coprolites. Multidimensional scaling analyses resulted in spatial arrangements of microbial profiles by culture, further supported by cluster analysis and ANOSIM. Differences between the microbial communities were positively correlated with culture, and SIMPER analysis indicated 68.8% dissimilarity between the Huecoid and Saladoid. Proteobacteria, Bacteroidetes and methanogens were found in all coprolite samples. Propionebacteria, Shewanella and lactic acid bacteria dominated in the Huecoid samples, while Acidobacteria, and peptococci were dominant in Saladoid samples. Yeasts, including Candida albicans and Crypotococcus spp. were found in all samples. Basidiomycetes were the most notable fungi in Huecoid samples while Ascomycetes predominated in Saladoid samples, suggesting differences in dietary habits. Our study provides an approach for the study of the microbial communities of coprolite samples from various cultures. PMID:23755194

  10. Response of microbial community composition and function to soil climate change

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Waldrop, M.P.; Firestone, M.K.

    2006-01-01

    Soil microbial communities mediate critical ecosystem carbon and nutrient cycles. How microbial communities will respond to changes in vegetation and climate, however, are not well understood. We reciprocally transplanted soil cores from under oak canopies and adjacent open grasslands in a California oak-grassland ecosystem to determine how microbial communities respond to changes in the soil environment and the potential consequences for the cycling of carbon. Every 3 months for up to 2 years, we monitored microbial community composition using phospholipid fatty acid analysis (PLFA), microbial biomass, respiration rates, microbial enzyme activities, and the activity of microbial groups by quantifying 13C uptake from a universal substrate (pyruvate) into PLFA biomarkers. Soil in the open grassland experienced higher maximum temperatures and lower soil water content than soil under the oak canopies. Soil microbial communities in soil under oak canopies were more sensitive to environmental change than those in adjacent soil from the open grassland. Oak canopy soil communities changed rapidly when cores were transplanted into the open grassland soil environment, but grassland soil communities did not change when transplanted into the oak canopy environment. Similarly, microbial biomass, enzyme activities, and microbial respiration decreased when microbial communities were transplanted from the oak canopy soils to the grassland environment, but not when the grassland communities were transplanted to the oak canopy environment. These data support the hypothesis that microbial community composition and function is altered when microbes are exposed to new extremes in environmental conditions; that is, environmental conditions outside of their "life history" envelopes. ?? 2006 Springer Science+Business Media, Inc.

  11. The Role of Soil Organic Matter, Nutrients, and Microbial Community Structure on the Performance of Microbial Fuel Cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rooney-Varga, J. N.; Dunaj, S. J.; Vallino, J. J.; Hines, M. E.; Gay, M.; Kobyljanec, C.

    2011-12-01

    Microbial fuel cells (MFCs) offer the potential for generating electricity, mitigating greenhouse gas emissions, and bioremediating pollutants through utilization of a plentiful, natural, and renewable resource: soil organic carbon. In the current study, we analyzed microbial community structure, MFC performance, and soil characteristics in different microhabitats (bulk soil, anode, and cathode) within MFCs constructed from agricultural or forest soils in order to determine how soil type and microbial dynamics influence MFC performance. MFCs were constructed with soils from agricultural and hardwood forest sites at Harvard Forest (Petersham, MA). The bulk soil characteristics were analyzed, including polyphenols, short chain fatty acids, total organic C and N, abiotic macronutrients, N and P mineralization rates, CO2 respiration rates, and MFC power output. Microbial community structure of the anodes, cathodes, and bulk soils was determined with molecular fingerprinting methods, which included terminal restriction length polymorphism (T-RFLP) analysis and 16S rRNA gene sequencing analysis. Our results indicated that MFCs constructed from agricultural soil had power output about 17 times that of forest soil-based MFCs and respiration rates about 10 times higher than forest soil MFCs. Agricultural soil MFCs had lower C:N ratios, polyphenol content, and acetate concentrations than forest soil MFCs, suggesting that active agricultural MFC microbial communities were supported by higher quality organic carbon. Microbial community profile data indicate that the microbial communities at the anode of the high power MFCs were less diverse than in low power MFCs and were dominated by Deltaproteobacteria, Geobacter, and, to a lesser extent, Clostridia, while low-power MFC anode communities were dominated by Clostridia. These data suggest that the presence of organic carbon substrate (acetate) was not the major limiting factor in selecting for highly electrogenic microbial

  12. Effects of low-shear modeled microgravity on a microbial community filtered through a 0.2-μm filter and its potential application in screening for novel microorganisms.

    PubMed

    Aoyagi, Hideki; Kuroda, Akiha

    2012-07-01

    The effects of low-shear modeled microgravity (LSMMG) on a microbial community filtered through a 0.2-μm filter were investigated, and the potential application of LSMMG in the screening of microorganisms was evaluated. Pond water was passed through a 0.2-μm filter and the filtrate inoculated into two kinds of media (Schneider's insect medium, and ten-times-diluted Schneider's insect [0.1-Sch] medium). The cultures were incubated under LSMMG and normal-gravity and the microbial cell growth rates compared. Cell growth rates, final cell concentrations, and substrate consumption rates were higher in the LSMMG culture than in the normal-gravity culture. The microbial communities obtained under the various culture conditions were subjected to denaturing gradient gel electrophoresis (DGGE), revealing three different groups of microorganisms: (i) microorganisms whose growth rates were increased by LSMMG; (ii) microorganisms whose growth rates were suppressed or inhibited by LSMMG; and (iii) microorganisms whose growth rates were not affected by LSMMG. Sequence analysis of the microorganisms whose growth rates were increased by LSMMG showed that some had high similarity with unculturable microorganisms. When these microorganisms that displayed similarity with unculturable microorganisms were cultivated on agar plates, some of the DGGE bands present in the LSMMG culture were also present. We show that it is possible to isolate and cultivate uncultured microorganisms by using combinations of LSMMG, normal-gravity, and agar plate culturing techniques.

  13. Fluvial network imprints on microbial diversity and community network topology

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Battin, T. J.; Besemer, K.; Widder, S.; Singer, G. A.; Ceola, S.; Bertuzzo, E.; Quince, C.; Sloan, W. T.; Rinaldo, A.

    2013-12-01

    Streams and rivers sculpt continental landscapes and the networks they form carry universal signatures of spatial organization. Biodiversity in fluvial networks ranks among the highest on Earth and microorganisms therein, often enclosed in biofilms, fulfill critical ecosystem functions even with repercussions on the global carbon cycle. We extensively used 454 pyrosequencing on biofilm samples from more than 100 streams from a 5th-order catchment, derived alpha and beta diversity patterns and, using co-occurrence analyses, we studied community network organization. Contrary to current theory and to animal diversity studies, we found microbial alpha diversity in biofilms to decrease downstream with confluences likely acting as filters to biodiversity as it propagates from the smallest headwaters to larger rivers. Along with higher beta diversity in the headwaters, these findings highlight headwaters as critical reservoirs of microbial diversity for entire fluvial networks. Co-occurrence analyses revealed a lower level of fragmentation of community networks in headwaters than in larger rivers downstream and further identified gatekeepers (at family level) as potential architects of the observed network topology. Similarly, fragmentation was higher downstream than upstream of confluences. Consistent with current network theory, simple model simulations suggest that fragmentation patterns are linked to persistence against perturbations. We further explore the role of perturbation for community network topology in the context of fluvial network hydrology. Our findings have deep implications for restoration and conservation. They portrait the imprint of fluvial networks on microbial community networks and thereby expand our knowledge on biodiversity and ecosystem persistence.

  14. Microbial community composition in sediments resists perturbation by nutrient enrichment.

    PubMed

    Bowen, Jennifer L; Ward, Bess B; Morrison, Hilary G; Hobbie, John E; Valiela, Ivan; Deegan, Linda A; Sogin, Mitchell L

    2011-09-01

    Functional redundancy in bacterial communities is expected to allow microbial assemblages to survive perturbation by allowing continuity in function despite compositional changes in communities. Recent evidence suggests, however, that microbial communities change both composition and function as a result of disturbance. We present evidence for a third response: resistance. We examined microbial community response to perturbation caused by nutrient enrichment in salt marsh sediments using deep pyrosequencing of 16S rRNA and functional gene microarrays targeting the nirS gene. Composition of the microbial community, as demonstrated by both genes, was unaffected by significant variations in external nutrient supply in our sampling locations, despite demonstrable and diverse nutrient-induced changes in many aspects of marsh ecology. The lack of response to external forcing demonstrates a remarkable uncoupling between microbial composition and ecosystem-level biogeochemical processes and suggests that sediment microbial communities are able to resist some forms of perturbation.

  15. Microbial community composition in sediments resists perturbation by nutrient enrichment

    PubMed Central

    Bowen, Jennifer L; Ward, Bess B; Morrison, Hilary G; Hobbie, John E; Valiela, Ivan; Deegan, Linda A; Sogin, Mitchell L

    2011-01-01

    Functional redundancy in bacterial communities is expected to allow microbial assemblages to survive perturbation by allowing continuity in function despite compositional changes in communities. Recent evidence suggests, however, that microbial communities change both composition and function as a result of disturbance. We present evidence for a third response: resistance. We examined microbial community response to perturbation caused by nutrient enrichment in salt marsh sediments using deep pyrosequencing of 16S rRNA and functional gene microarrays targeting the nirS gene. Composition of the microbial community, as demonstrated by both genes, was unaffected by significant variations in external nutrient supply in our sampling locations, despite demonstrable and diverse nutrient-induced changes in many aspects of marsh ecology. The lack of response to external forcing demonstrates a remarkable uncoupling between microbial composition and ecosystem-level biogeochemical processes and suggests that sediment microbial communities are able to resist some forms of perturbation. PMID:21412346

  16. Electricity generation and microbial community changes in microbial fuel cells packed with different anodic materials.

    PubMed

    Sun, Yanmei; Wei, Jincheng; Liang, Peng; Huang, Xia

    2011-12-01

    Four materials, carbon felt cube (CFC), granular graphite (GG), granular activated carbon (GAC) and granular semicoke (GS) were tested as packed anodic materials to seek a potentially practical material for microbial fuel cells (MFCs). The microbial community and its correlation with the electricity generation performance of MFCs were explored. The maximum power density was found in GAC, followed by CFC, GG and GS. In GAC and CFC packed MFCs, Geobacter was the dominating genus, while Azospira was the most populous group in GG. Results further indicated that GAC was the most favorable for Geobacter adherence and growth, and the maximum power densities had positive correlation with the total biomass and the relative abundance of Geobacter, but without apparent correlation with the microbial diversity. Due to the low content of Geobacter in GS, power generated in this system may be attributed to other microorganisms such as Synergistes, Bacteroidetes and Castellaniella.

  17. Anodic microbial community diversity as a predictor of the power output of microbial fuel cells.

    PubMed

    Stratford, James P; Beecroft, Nelli J; Slade, Robert C T; Grüning, André; Avignone-Rossa, Claudio

    2014-03-01

    The relationship between the diversity of mixed-species microbial consortia and their electrogenic potential in the anodes of microbial fuel cells was examined using different diversity measures as predictors. Identical microbial fuel cells were sampled at multiple time-points. Biofilm and suspension communities were analysed by denaturing gradient gel electrophoresis to calculate the number and relative abundance of species. Shannon and Simpson indices and richness were examined for association with power using bivariate and multiple linear regression, with biofilm DNA as an additional variable. In simple bivariate regressions, the correlation of Shannon diversity of the biofilm and power is stronger (r=0.65, p=0.001) than between power and richness (r=0.39, p=0.076), or between power and the Simpson index (r=0.5, p=0.018). Using Shannon diversity and biofilm DNA as predictors of power, a regression model can be constructed (r=0.73, p<0.001). Ecological parameters such as the Shannon index are predictive of the electrogenic potential of microbial communities.

  18. Microbial community assembly, theory and rare functions

    PubMed Central

    Pholchan, Mujalin K.; Baptista, Joana de C.; Davenport, Russell J.; Sloan, William T.; Curtis, Thomas P.

    2013-01-01

    Views of community assembly have traditionally been based on the contrasting perspectives of the deterministic niche paradigm and stochastic neutral models. This study sought to determine if we could use empirical interventions conceived from a niche and neutral perspective to change the diversity and evenness of the microbial community within a reactor treating wastewater and to see if there was any associated change in the removal of endocrine disrupting compounds (EDCs). The systematic removal of EDCs and micropollutants from biological treatment systems is a major challenge for environmental engineers. We manipulated pairs of bioreactors in an experiment in which “niche” (temporal variation in resource concentration and resource complexity) and “neutral” (community size and immigration) attributes were changed and the effect on the detectable diversity and the removal of steroidal estrogens was evaluated. The effects of manipulations on diversity suggested that both niche and neutral processes are important in community assembly. We found that temporal variation in environmental conditions increased diversity but resource complexity did not. Larger communities had greater diversity but attempting to increase immigration by adding soil had the opposite effect. The effects of the manipulations on EDC removal efficiency were complex. Decreases in diversity, which were associated with a decrease in evenness, were associated with an increase in EDC removal. A simple generalized neutral model (calibrated with parameters typical of wastewater treatment plants) showed that decreases in diversity should lead to the increase in abundance of some ostensibly taxa rare. We conclude that neither niche and neutral perspectives nor the effect of diversity on putative rare functions can be properly understood by naïve qualitative observations. Instead, the relative importance of the key microbial mechanisms must be determined and, ideally, expressed mathematically

  19. Microbial community assembly, theory and rare functions.

    PubMed

    Pholchan, Mujalin K; Baptista, Joana de C; Davenport, Russell J; Sloan, William T; Curtis, Thomas P

    2013-01-01

    Views of community assembly have traditionally been based on the contrasting perspectives of the deterministic niche paradigm and stochastic neutral models. This study sought to determine if we could use empirical interventions conceived from a niche and neutral perspective to change the diversity and evenness of the microbial community within a reactor treating wastewater and to see if there was any associated change in the removal of endocrine disrupting compounds (EDCs). The systematic removal of EDCs and micropollutants from biological treatment systems is a major challenge for environmental engineers. We manipulated pairs of bioreactors in an experiment in which "niche" (temporal variation in resource concentration and resource complexity) and "neutral" (community size and immigration) attributes were changed and the effect on the detectable diversity and the removal of steroidal estrogens was evaluated. The effects of manipulations on diversity suggested that both niche and neutral processes are important in community assembly. We found that temporal variation in environmental conditions increased diversity but resource complexity did not. Larger communities had greater diversity but attempting to increase immigration by adding soil had the opposite effect. The effects of the manipulations on EDC removal efficiency were complex. Decreases in diversity, which were associated with a decrease in evenness, were associated with an increase in EDC removal. A simple generalized neutral model (calibrated with parameters typical of wastewater treatment plants) showed that decreases in diversity should lead to the increase in abundance of some ostensibly taxa rare. We conclude that neither niche and neutral perspectives nor the effect of diversity on putative rare functions can be properly understood by naïve qualitative observations. Instead, the relative importance of the key microbial mechanisms must be determined and, ideally, expressed mathematically.

  20. The skin microbiome: Associations between altered microbial communities and disease.

    PubMed

    Weyrich, Laura S; Dixit, Shreya; Farrer, Andrew G; Cooper, Alan J; Cooper, Alan J

    2015-11-01

    A single square centimetre of the human skin can contain up to one billion microorganisms. These diverse communities of bacteria, fungi, mites and viruses can provide protection against disease, but can also exacerbate skin lesions, promote disease and delay wound healing. This review addresses the current knowledge surrounding the healthy skin microbiome and examines how different alterations to the skin microbial communities can contribute to disease. Current methodologies are considered, changes in microbial diversity and colonisation by specific microorganisms are discussed in the context of atopic dermatitis, psoriasis, acne vulgaris and chronic wounds. The recent impact of modern Westernised lifestyles on the human skin microbiome is also examined, as well as the potential benefits and pitfalls of novel therapeutic strategies. Further analysis of the human skin microbiome, and its interactions with the host immune system and other commensal microorganisms, will undoubtedly elucidate molecular mechanisms for disease and reveal gateways for novel therapeutic treatment strategies.

  1. Metaproteomics of complex microbial communities in biogas plants

    PubMed Central

    Heyer, Robert; Kohrs, Fabian; Reichl, Udo; Benndorf, Dirk

    2015-01-01

    Production of biogas from agricultural biomass or organic wastes is an important source of renewable energy. Although thousands of biogas plants (BGPs) are operating in Germany, there is still a significant potential to improve yields, e.g. from fibrous substrates. In addition, process stability should be optimized. Besides evaluating technical measures, improving our understanding of microbial communities involved into the biogas process is considered as key issue to achieve both goals. Microscopic and genetic approaches to analyse community composition provide valuable experimental data, but fail to detect presence of enzymes and overall metabolic activity of microbial communities. Therefore, metaproteomics can significantly contribute to elucidate critical steps in the conversion of biomass to methane as it delivers combined functional and phylogenetic data. Although metaproteomics analyses are challenged by sample impurities, sample complexity and redundant protein identification, and are still limited by the availability of genome sequences, recent studies have shown promising results. In the following, the workflow and potential pitfalls for metaproteomics of samples from full-scale BGP are discussed. In addition, the value of metaproteomics to contribute to the further advancement of microbial ecology is evaluated. Finally, synergistic effects expected when metaproteomics is combined with advanced imaging techniques, metagenomics, metatranscriptomics and metabolomics are addressed. PMID:25874383

  2. Microbial Communities Initiative: Melding Technology, Experimentation, and Theory

    ScienceCinema

    Konopka, Allan

    2016-07-12

    The Microbial Communities Initiative is a 5-year investment by Pacific Northwest National Laboratory that integrates biological/ecological experimentation, analytical chemistry, and simulation modeling. The objective is to create transforming technologies, elucidate mechanistic forces, and develop theoretical frameworks for the analysis and predictive understanding of microbial communities. Dr. Konopka describes PNNLs Microbial Communities Initiative. The MCI will integrate biological/ecological experimentation, analytical chemistry, and simulation modeling to create transforming technologies, elucidate mechanistic forces, and develop theoretical frameworks for the analysis and predictive understanding of microbial communities.

  3. Biochar addition impacts soil microbial community in tropical soils

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Paz-Ferreiro, Jorge; Fu, Shenglei; Méndez, Ana; Gascó, Gabriel

    2014-05-01

    Studies on the effect of biochar on soil microbial activity and community structure in tropical areas are scarce. In this study we report the effect of several types of biochar (sewage sludge biochar, paper mill waste biochar, miscanthus biochar and pinewood biochar) in the soil microbial community of two tropical soils, an Acrisol and an Oxisol. In addition we study the effect of the presence or absence of earthworms in soil microbial community. Soil microbial community was more strongly affected by biochar than by the presence or absence of macrofauna.

  4. Antibiotic effects on microbial community characteristics in soils under conservation management practices

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Veterinary antibiotics (VAs) administered to livestock are introduced to agroecosystems via land application of manure, posing a potential human and environmental health risk. These Antibiotics may adversely affect soil microbial communities. The objectives of this research were to investigate poten...

  5. Multifactorial diversity sustains microbial community stability.

    PubMed

    Erkus, Oylum; de Jager, Victor C L; Spus, Maciej; van Alen-Boerrigter, Ingrid J; van Rijswijck, Irma M H; Hazelwood, Lucie; Janssen, Patrick W M; van Hijum, Sacha A F T; Kleerebezem, Michiel; Smid, Eddy J

    2013-11-01

    Maintenance of a high degree of biodiversity in homogeneous environments is poorly understood. A complex cheese starter culture with a long history of use was characterized as a model system to study simple microbial communities. Eight distinct genetic lineages were identified, encompassing two species: Lactococcus lactis and Leuconostoc mesenteroides. The genetic lineages were found to be collections of strains with variable plasmid content and phage sensitivities. Kill-the-winner hypothesis explaining the suppression of the fittest strains by density-dependent phage predation was operational at the strain level. This prevents the eradication of entire genetic lineages from the community during propagation regimes (back-slopping), stabilizing the genetic heterogeneity in the starter culture against environmental uncertainty.

  6. Ohmic resistance affects microbial community and electrochemical kinetics in a multi-anode microbial electrochemical cell

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dhar, Bipro Ranjan; Ryu, Hodon; Santo Domingo, Jorge W.; Lee, Hyung-Sool

    2016-11-01

    Multi-anode microbial electrochemical cells (MxCs) are considered as one of the most promising configurations for scale-up of MxCs, but understanding of anode kinetics in multiple anodes is limited in the MxCs. In this study we assessed microbial community and electrochemical kinetic parameters for biofilms on individual anodes in a multi-anode MxC to better comprehend anode fundamentals. Microbial community analysis targeting 16S rRNA Illumina sequencing showed that Geobacter genus was abundant (87%) only on the biofilm anode closest to a reference electrode (low ohmic energy loss) in which current density was the highest among three anodes. In comparison, Geobacter populations were less than 1% for biofilms on other two anodes distant from the reference electrode (high ohmic energy loss), generating small current density. Half-saturation anode potential (EKA) was the lowest at -0.251 to -0.242 V (vs. standard hydrogen electrode) for the closest biofilm anode to the reference electrode, while EKA was as high as -0.134 V for the farthest anode. Our study proves that electric potential of individual anodes changed by ohmic energy loss shifts biofilm communities on individual anodes and consequently influences electron transfer kinetics on each anode in the multi-anode MxC.

  7. Culture-independent methods for identifying microbial communities in cheese.

    PubMed

    Jany, Jean-Luc; Barbier, Georges

    2008-10-01

    This review focuses on the culture-independent methods available for the description of both bacterial and fungal communities in cheese. Important steps of the culture-independent strategy, which relies on bulk DNA extraction from cheese and polymerase chain reaction (PCR) amplification of selected sequences, are discussed. We critically evaluate the identification techniques already used for monitoring microbial communities in cheese, including PCR-denaturing gradient gel electrophoresis (PCR-DGGE), PCR-temporal temperature gradient gel electrophoresis (PCR-TTGE) or single-strand conformation polymorphism-PCR (SSCP-PCR) as well as some other techniques that remain to be adapted to the study of cheese communities. Further, our analysis draws attention to the lack of data available on suitable DNA sequences for identifying fungal communities in cheese and proposes some potential DNA targets.

  8. Do gut microbial communities differ in pediatric IBS and health?

    PubMed Central

    Shankar, Vijay; Agans, Richard; Holmes, Benjamin; Raymer, Michael; Paliy, Oleg

    2013-01-01

    Human gastrointestinal microbial communities are recognized as important determinants of the host health and disease status. We have recently examined the distal gut microbiota of two groups of children: healthy adolescents and those diagnosed with diarrhea-predominant irritable bowel syndrome (IBS). We have revealed the common core of phylotypes shared among all children, identified genera differentially abundant between two groups and surveyed possible relationships among intestinal microbial genera and phylotypes. In this article we explored the use of supervised and unsupervised ordination and classification methods to separate and classify child fecal samples based on their quantitative microbial profile. We observed sample separation according to the participant health status, and this separation could often be attributed to the abundance levels of several specific microbial genera. We also extended our original correlation network analysis of the relative abundances of bacterial genera across samples and determined possible association networks separately for healthy and IBS groups. Interestingly, the number of significant genus abundance associations was drastically lower among the IBS samples, which can potentially be attributed to the existence of multiple routes to microbiota disbalance in IBS or to the loss of microbial interactions during IBS development. PMID:23674073

  9. Do gut microbial communities differ in pediatric IBS and health?

    PubMed

    Shankar, Vijay; Agans, Richard; Holmes, Benjamin; Raymer, Michael; Paliy, Oleg

    2013-01-01

    Human gastrointestinal microbial communities are recognized as important determinants of the host health and disease status. We have recently examined the distal gut microbiota of two groups of children: healthy adolescents and those diagnosed with diarrhea-predominant irritable bowel syndrome (IBS). We have revealed the common core of phylotypes shared among all children, identified genera differentially abundant between two groups and surveyed possible relationships among intestinal microbial genera and phylotypes. In this article we explored the use of supervised and unsupervised ordination and classification methods to separate and classify child fecal samples based on their quantitative microbial profile. We observed sample separation according to the participant health status, and this separation could often be attributed to the abundance levels of several specific microbial genera. We also extended our original correlation network analysis of the relative abundances of bacterial genera across samples and determined possible association networks separately for healthy and IBS groups. Interestingly, the number of significant genus abundance associations was drastically lower among the IBS samples, which can potentially be attributed to the existence of multiple routes to microbiota disbalance in IBS or to the loss of microbial interactions during IBS development.

  10. Determinants of the distribution of nitrogen-cycling microbial communities at the landscape scale.

    PubMed

    Bru, D; Ramette, A; Saby, N P A; Dequiedt, S; Ranjard, L; Jolivet, C; Arrouays, D; Philippot, L

    2011-03-01

    Little information is available regarding the landscape-scale distribution of microbial communities and its environmental determinants. However, a landscape perspective is needed to understand the relative importance of local and regional factors and land management for the microbial communities and the ecosystem services they provide. In the most comprehensive analysis of spatial patterns of microbial communities to date, we investigated the distribution of functional microbial communities involved in N-cycling and of the total bacterial and crenarchaeal communities over 107 sites in Burgundy, a 31,500 km(2) region of France, using a 16 × 16 km(2) sampling grid. At each sampling site, the abundance of total bacteria, crenarchaea, nitrate reducers, denitrifiers- and ammonia oxidizers were estimated by quantitative PCR and 42 soil physico-chemical properties were measured. The relative contributions of land use, spatial distance, climatic conditions, time, and soil physico-chemical properties to the spatial distribution of the different communities were analyzed by canonical variation partitioning. Our results indicate that 43-85% of the spatial variation in community abundances could be explained by the measured environmental parameters, with soil chemical properties (mostly pH) being the main driver. We found spatial autocorrelation up to 739 km and used geostatistical modelling to generate predictive maps of the distribution of microbial communities at the landscape scale. The present study highlights the potential of a spatially explicit approach for microbial ecology to identify the overarching factors driving the spatial heterogeneity of microbial communities even at the landscape scale.

  11. Short-term effect of capping on microbial communities in freshwater sediments.

    PubMed

    Wang, Qi; Kassem, Issmat I; Sigler, Von; Gruden, Cyndee

    2009-04-01

    Because biogas bubbles can influence cap integrity, the effect of capping and cap material on the ebullition potential in sediments must be studied. The goal of this comprehensive study was to determine the short-term effect of capping regime on the activity, metabolic potential, and community structure of sediment microorganisms. To evaluate the effect of capping (sand, synthetic aggregate, and no cap) on microbial communities (i.e., nitrifiers and methanogens), sediments were collected from the Anacostia River (Washington, D.C.). Microbial communities in sand-capped sediments exhibited the highest activity (tetrazolium redox dye, fluorescein diacetate hydrolysis assay, and biogas production), while communities in uncapped sediments exhibited the highest metabolic diversity. Substantial changes in microbial community structure (denaturing gradient gel electrophoresis) did not occur as a result of capping. Our data showed that the nature and magnitude of the effect that capping can have on microbial activity (biogas production) will likely be dependent on the capping materials chosen.

  12. Molecular Analysis of Endolithic Microbial Communities in Volcanic Glasses

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    di Meo, C. A.; Giovannoni, S.; Fisk, M.

    2002-12-01

    16S rDNA for one basalt sample (Dive 3718) and its corresponding background water sample were constructed. The most abundant archaeal genes were closely related to uncultured Group I marine Crenarchaeota that have been previously identified from similar deep-sea habitats. These archaeal genes collectively correspond to the dominant T-RFLP peak present in both the rock and water samples. In a third study, we investigated the microbial community residing in a Hawaiian Scientific Drilling Program core collected near Hilo, Hawaii. Total microbial DNA was extracted from a depth of 1351 m in the drill core (ambient temperature in the drill hole ~16°C), where petrographic evidence suggested the presence of microbial alteration. Archaeal 16S rRNA genes were amplified, cloned, and twelve clones representing the most abundant groups were sequenced. Eleven out of the twelve clones were 97 to 99% similar to Group I marine Crenarchaeota, while the remaining clone was 95% similar to Euryarchaeota, based on BLAST searches of the GenBank database. Our community-level approach to studying microbes living in volcanic glasses has provided a greater understanding of the microbial communities that potentially alter these materials.

  13. Ecotoxicological assessment of soil microbial community tolerance to glyphosate.

    PubMed

    Allegrini, Marco; Zabaloy, María Celina; Gómez, Elena del V

    2015-11-15

    Glyphosate is the most used herbicide worldwide. While contrasting results have been observed related with its impact on soil microbial communities, more studies are necessary to elucidate the potential effects of the herbicide. Differences in tolerance detected by Pollution Induced Community Tolerance (PICT) approach could reflect these effects. The objective of the present study was to assess the tolerance to glyphosate (the active ingredient and a commercial formulation) of contrasting soils with (H) and without (NH) history of exposure. The hypothesis of a higher tolerance in H soils due to a sustained selection pressure on community structure was tested through the PICT approach. Results indicated that tolerance to glyphosate is not consistent with previous history of exposure to the herbicide either for the active ingredient or for a commercial formulation. Soils of H and NH sites were also characterized in order to determine to what extent they differ in their functional diversity and structure of microbial communities. Denaturant Gradient Gel Electrophoresis (DGGE) and Quantitative Real Time PCR (Q-PCR) indicated high similarity of Eubacteria profiles as well as no significant differences in abundance, respectively, between H and NH sites. Community level physiological profiling (CLPP) indicated some differences in respiration of specific sources but functional diversity was very similar as reflected by catabolic evenness (E). These results support PICT assay, which ideally requires soils with differences in their exposure to the contaminant but minor differences in other characteristics. This is, to our knowledge, the first report of PICT approach with glyphosate examining tolerance at soil microbial community level.

  14. Sheep-urine-induced changes in soil microbial community structure.

    PubMed

    Nunan, Naoise; Singh, Brajesh; Reid, Eileen; Ord, Brian; Papert, Artemis; Squires, Julie; Prosser, Jim I; Wheatley, Ron E; McNicol, Jim; Millard, Peter

    2006-05-01

    Soil microbial communities play an important role in nutrient cycling and nutrient availability, especially in unimproved soils. In grazed pastures, sheep urine causes local changes in nutrient concentration which may be a source of heterogeneity in microbial community structure. In the present study, we investigated the effects of synthetic urine on soil microbial community structure, using physiological (community level physiological profiling, CLPP), biochemical (phospholipid fatty acid analysis, PLFA) and molecular (denaturing gradient gel electrophoresis, DGGE) fingerprinting methods. PLFA data suggested that synthetic urine treatment had no significant effect on total microbial (total PLFA), total bacterial or fungal biomass; however, significant changes in microbial community structure were observed with both PLFA and DGGE data. PLFA data suggested that synthetic urine induced a shift towards communities with higher concentrations of branched fatty acids. DGGE banding patterns derived from control and treated soils differed, due to a higher proportion of DNA sequences migrating only to the upper regions of the gel in synthetic urine-treated samples. The shifts in community structure measured by PLFA and DGGE were significantly correlated with one another, suggesting that both datasets reflected the same changes in microbial communities. Synthetic urine treatment preferentially stimulated the use of rhizosphere-C in sole-carbon-source utilisation profiles. The changes caused by synthetic urine addition accounted for only 10-15% of the total variability in community structure, suggesting that overall microbial community structure was reasonably stable and that changes were confined to a small proportion of the communities.

  15. Microbial Communities of the Okinawa Backarc Basin Subvent Biosphere

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Brandt, L. D.; House, C. H.

    2014-12-01

    IODP Expedition 331 to the Okinawa backarc basin provided an opportunity to study the microbial stratigraphy within the sediments surrounding a hydrothermal vent. The Okinawa backarc basin is a sedimented region of the seafloor located on a continental margin, and also hosts a hydrothermal network within the subsurface. Site C0014 within the Iheya North hydrothermal field is located 450 m east of the active vent and has a surface temperature of 5°C with no evidence of hydrothermal alteration within the top 10 m. Temperature increases with depth at an estimated rate of 3°C/m and transitions from non-hydrothermal margin sediments to a hydrothermally altered regime below 10 m. Site C0014 is a unique location to study changes in microbial communities with depth, as the hydrothermal system generates a thermally and geochemically restrictive subvent biosphere. In this study, we utilized deep 16S rRNA sequencing of DNA from IODP Expedition 331 Site C0014 sediment horizons in order to assess diversity throughout the sediment column as well as determine the potential limits of the biosphere. Analysis of the amplicon data suggests that Archaea represent a significant proportion of the indigenous community throughout the top 15 m of sediment, where Archaea then abruptly disappear. Furthermore, a deeper classification of Archaeal sequences suggests a transition from a mesophilic community to a potentially thermophilic one, where there is an increasingly stronger signal of Miscellaneous Crenarchaeotic Group (MCG) followed by Terrestrial Hot Spring Crenarchaeotic Group (THSCG). Additionally, there are several horizons in which methanotrophy is likely supported, indicated by peaks in anaerobic methanotrophic Archaea. The cessation of Archaea as well as Chloroflexi, a common marine subsurface bacterial phylum, at approximately 15 meters below seafloor (mbsf) is suggestive of a potential boundary within Site C0014 in which the environmental conditions have become too restrictive

  16. Biotic Interactions in Microbial Communities as Modulators of Biogeochemical Processes: Methanotrophy as a Model System

    PubMed Central

    Ho, Adrian; Angel, Roey; Veraart, Annelies J.; Daebeler, Anne; Jia, Zhongjun; Kim, Sang Yoon; Kerckhof, Frederiek-Maarten; Boon, Nico; Bodelier, Paul L. E.

    2016-01-01

    Microbial interaction is an integral component of microbial ecology studies, yet the role, extent, and relevance of microbial interaction in community functioning remains unclear, particularly in the context of global biogeochemical cycles. While many studies have shed light on the physico-chemical cues affecting specific processes, (micro)biotic controls and interactions potentially steering microbial communities leading to altered functioning are less known. Yet, recent accumulating evidence suggests that the concerted actions of a community can be significantly different from the combined effects of individual microorganisms, giving rise to emergent properties. Here, we exemplify the importance of microbial interaction for ecosystem processes by analysis of a reasonably well-understood microbial guild, namely, aerobic methane-oxidizing bacteria (MOB). We reviewed the literature which provided compelling evidence for the relevance of microbial interaction in modulating methane oxidation. Support for microbial associations within methane-fed communities is sought by a re-analysis of literature data derived from stable isotope probing studies of various complex environmental settings. Putative positive interactions between active MOB and other microbes were assessed by a correlation network-based analysis with datasets covering diverse environments where closely interacting members of a consortium can potentially alter the methane oxidation activity. Although, methanotrophy is used as a model system, the fundamentals of our postulations may be applicable to other microbial guilds mediating other biogeochemical processes. PMID:27602021

  17. Microbial communities in the deep subsurface

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Krumholz, Lee R.

    The diversity of microbial populations and microbial communities within the earth's subsurface is summarized in this review. Scientists are currently exploring the subsurface and addressing questions of microbial diversity, the interactions among microorganisms, and mechanisms for maintenance of subsurface microbial communities. Heterotrophic anaerobic microbial communities exist in relatively permeable sandstone or sandy sediments, located adjacent to organic-rich deposits. These microorganisms appear to be maintained by the consumption of organic compounds derived from adjacent deposits. Sources of organic material serving as electron donors include lignite-rich Eocene sediments beneath the Texas coastal plain, organic-rich Cretaceous shales from the southwestern US, as well as Cretaceous clays containing organic materials and fermentative bacteria from the Atlantic Coastal Plain. Additionally, highly diverse microbial communities occur in regions where a source of organic matter is not apparent but where igneous rock is present. Examples include the basalt-rich subsurface of the Columbia River valley and the granitic subsurface regions of Sweden and Canada. These subsurface microbial communities appear to be maintained by the action of lithotrophic bacteria growing on H2 that is chemically generated within the subsurface. Other deep-dwelling microbial communities exist within the deep sediments of oceans. These systems often rely on anaerobic metabolism and sulfate reduction. Microbial colonization extends to the depths below which high temperatures limit the ability of microbes to survive. Energy sources for the organisms living in the oceanic subsurface may originate as oceanic sedimentary deposits. In this review, each of these microbial communities is discussed in detail with specific reference to their energy sources, their observed growth patterns, and their diverse composition. This information is critical to develop further understanding of subsurface

  18. Soil amendments yield persisting changes in the microbial communities

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Soil microbial communities are sensitive to carbon amendments and largely control the decomposition and accumulation of soil organic matter. In this study, we evaluated whether the type of carbon amendment applied to wheat-cropped or fallow soil imparted lasting effects on the microbial community w...

  19. Effect of pesticides on microbial communities in container aquatic habitats.

    PubMed

    Muturi, Ephantus J; Donthu, Ravi Kiran; Fields, Christopher J; Moise, Imelda K; Kim, Chang-Hyun

    2017-03-16

    Container aquatic habitats support a specialized community of macroinvertebrates (e.g. mosquitoes) that feed on microbial communities associated with decaying organic matter. These aquatic habitats are often embedded within and around agricultural lands and are frequently exposed to pesticides. We used a microcosm approach to examine the single and combined effects of two herbicides (atrazine, glyphosate), and three insecticides (malathion, carbaryl, permethrin) on microbial communities of container aquatic habitats. MiSeq sequencing of the V4 region of both bacterial and archaeal 16S rRNA gene was used to characterize the microbial communities of indoor microcosms that were either exposed to each pesticide alone, a mix of herbicides, a mix of insecticides, or a mix of all five insecticides. Individual insecticides but not herbicides reduced the microbial diversity and richness and two insecticides, carbaryl and permethrin, also altered the microbial community structure. A mixture of herbicides had no effect on microbial diversity or structure but a mixture of insecticides or all five pesticides reduced microbial diversity and altered the community structure. These findings suggest that exposure of aquatic ecosystems to individual pesticides or their mixtures can disrupt aquatic microbial communities and there is need to decipher how these changes affect resident macroinvertebrate communities.

  20. Effect of pesticides on microbial communities in container aquatic habitats

    PubMed Central

    Muturi, Ephantus J.; Donthu, Ravi Kiran; Fields, Christopher J.; Moise, Imelda K.; Kim, Chang-Hyun

    2017-01-01

    Container aquatic habitats support a specialized community of macroinvertebrates (e.g. mosquitoes) that feed on microbial communities associated with decaying organic matter. These aquatic habitats are often embedded within and around agricultural lands and are frequently exposed to pesticides. We used a microcosm approach to examine the single and combined effects of two herbicides (atrazine, glyphosate), and three insecticides (malathion, carbaryl, permethrin) on microbial communities of container aquatic habitats. MiSeq sequencing of the V4 region of both bacterial and archaeal 16S rRNA gene was used to characterize the microbial communities of indoor microcosms that were either exposed to each pesticide alone, a mix of herbicides, a mix of insecticides, or a mix of all five insecticides. Individual insecticides but not herbicides reduced the microbial diversity and richness and two insecticides, carbaryl and permethrin, also altered the microbial community structure. A mixture of herbicides had no effect on microbial diversity or structure but a mixture of insecticides or all five pesticides reduced microbial diversity and altered the community structure. These findings suggest that exposure of aquatic ecosystems to individual pesticides or their mixtures can disrupt aquatic microbial communities and there is need to decipher how these changes affect resident macroinvertebrate communities. PMID:28300212

  1. Response of soil microbial communities during changes in land management

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    The response of soil microbial communities to restoration following disturbances is poorly understood. We studied the soil microbial communities in a forest disturbance-restoration series comprising a native deciduous forest (DF), conventionally tilled cropland (CT) and mid-succession forest (SF) re...

  2. Microbial biomass, activity and community composition in constructed wetlands.

    PubMed

    Truu, Marika; Juhanson, Jaanis; Truu, Jaak

    2009-06-15

    The aim of the current article is to give an overview about microbial communities and their functioning but also about factors affecting microbial activity in the three most common types (surface flow and two types of sub-surface flow) of constructed wetlands. The paper reviews the community composition and structural diversity of the microbial biomass, analyzing different aspects of microbial activity with respect to wastewater properties, specific wetland type, and environmental parameters. A brief introduction about the application of different novel molecular techniques for the assessment of microbial communities in constructed wetlands is also given. Microbially mediated processes in constructed wetlands are mainly dependent on hydraulic conditions, wastewater properties, including substrate and nutrient quality and availability, filter material or soil type, plants, and different environmental factors. Microbial biomass is within similar ranges in both horizontal and vertical subsurface flow and surface flow constructed wetlands. Stratification of the biomass but also a stratified structural pattern of the bacterial community can be seen in subsurface flow systems. Microbial biomass C/N ratio is higher in horizontal flow systems compared to vertical flow systems, indicating the structural differences in microbial communities between those two constructed wetland types. The total activity of the microbial community is in the same range, but heterotrophic growth is higher in the subsurface (vertical flow) system compared to the surface flow systems. Available species-specific data about microbial communities in different types of wetlands is scarce and therefore it is impossible make any general conclusions about the dynamics of microbial community structure in wetlands, its relationship to removal processes and operational parameters.

  3. The Role of Microbial Community Composition in Controlling Soil Respiration Responses to Temperature

    PubMed Central

    Khachane, Amit; Dungait, Jennifer A. J.; Fraser, Fiona; Hopkins, David W.; Wookey, Philip A.; Singh, Brajesh K.; Freitag, Thomas E.; Hartley, Iain P.; Prosser, James I.

    2016-01-01

    Rising global temperatures may increase the rates of soil organic matter decomposition by heterotrophic microorganisms, potentially accelerating climate change further by releasing additional carbon dioxide (CO2) to the atmosphere. However, the possibility that microbial community responses to prolonged warming may modify the temperature sensitivity of soil respiration creates large uncertainty in the strength of this positive feedback. Both compensatory responses (decreasing temperature sensitivity of soil respiration in the long-term) and enhancing responses (increasing temperature sensitivity) have been reported, but the mechanisms underlying these responses are poorly understood. In this study, microbial biomass, community structure and the activities of dehydrogenase and β-glucosidase enzymes were determined for 18 soils that had previously demonstrated either no response or varying magnitude of enhancing or compensatory responses of temperature sensitivity of heterotrophic microbial respiration to prolonged cooling. The soil cooling approach, in contrast to warming experiments, discriminates between microbial community responses and the consequences of substrate depletion, by minimising changes in substrate availability. The initial microbial community composition, determined by molecular analysis of soils showing contrasting respiration responses to cooling, provided evidence that the magnitude of enhancing responses was partly related to microbial community composition. There was also evidence that higher relative abundance of saprophytic Basidiomycota may explain the compensatory response observed in one soil, but neither microbial biomass nor enzymatic capacity were significantly affected by cooling. Our findings emphasise the key importance of soil microbial community responses for feedbacks to global change, but also highlight important areas where our understanding remains limited. PMID:27798702

  4. Alpine Microbial Community Responses to Summer Warming

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Osborne, B. B.; Baron, J.; Wallenstein, M. D.

    2011-12-01

    Remote alpine ecosystems of the western US are vulnerable to anthropogenic drivers of change. Atmospheric nitrogen (N) deposition and a changing climate introduce nutrients, alter hydrological processes, and expose soils to novel temperature regimes. We asked whether terrestrial microbes, specifically nitrifiers that may contribute to already high lake and stream NO3- concentrations, may be responding to changes in important controls of community development and activity associated with a changing climate, namely temperature and moisture. In August 2010 we sampled three soils from the Loch Vale Watershed in Rocky Mountain National Park which fell along a gradient of succession commonly represented in deglaciated alpine catchments. These included well-developed meadow soils, poorly vegetated talus substrate, and newly-exposed glacial outwash. Outwash, talus, and meadow samples were all N-rich and contained NH4-N concentrations ~7 times higher than NO3-N. Soils were incubated for 45 days at 2.5, 10, and 25oC and three moisture levels based on initial field conditions. Nitrifier concentrations were greatest in outwash, intermediate in talus, and lowest in meadow samples. Bacterial nitrifier abundance greatly surpassed archaeal nitrifier levels. Net nitrification was also greatest in outwash, followed by meadow and talus respectively. Moisture, rather than temperature, was a dominant control over both nitrifier abundance and activity. Linking the influence of temperature and moisture on alpine microbial communities will provide insight into control thresholds, optima, and synergistic interactions. This research is part of a larger study of controls on headwater stream and lake NO3-. Characterizing microbial NO3- production in the alpine will help us evaluate the importance of biological, as opposed to physical, sources of stream NO3-. It will also inform our ability to forecast and mitigate consequences of anthropogenic drivers of change on these systems.

  5. Microbial community functional change during vertebrate carrion decomposition.

    PubMed

    Pechal, Jennifer L; Crippen, Tawni L; Tarone, Aaron M; Lewis, Andrew J; Tomberlin, Jeffery K; Benbow, M Eric

    2013-01-01

    Microorganisms play a critical role in the decomposition of organic matter, which contributes to energy and nutrient transformation in every ecosystem. Yet, little is known about the functional activity of epinecrotic microbial communities associated with carrion. The objective of this study was to provide a description of the carrion associated microbial community functional activity using differential carbon source use throughout decomposition over seasons, between years and when microbial communities were isolated from eukaryotic colonizers (e.g., necrophagous insects). Additionally, microbial communities were identified at the phyletic level using high throughput sequencing during a single study. We hypothesized that carrion microbial community functional profiles would change over the duration of decomposition, and that this change would depend on season, year and presence of necrophagous insect colonization. Biolog EcoPlates™ were used to measure the variation in epinecrotic microbial community function by the differential use of 29 carbon sources throughout vertebrate carrion decomposition. Pyrosequencing was used to describe the bacterial community composition in one experiment to identify key phyla associated with community functional changes. Overall, microbial functional activity increased throughout decomposition in spring, summer and winter while it decreased in autumn. Additionally, microbial functional activity was higher in 2011 when necrophagous arthropod colonizer effects were tested. There were inconsistent trends in the microbial function of communities isolated from remains colonized by necrophagous insects between 2010 and 2011, suggesting a greater need for a mechanistic understanding of the process. These data indicate that functional analyses can be implemented in carrion studies and will be important in understanding the influence of microbial communities on an essential ecosystem process, carrion decomposition.

  6. Microbial Community Functional Change during Vertebrate Carrion Decomposition

    PubMed Central

    Pechal, Jennifer L.; Crippen, Tawni L.; Tarone, Aaron M.; Lewis, Andrew J.; Tomberlin, Jeffery K.; Benbow, M. Eric

    2013-01-01

    Microorganisms play a critical role in the decomposition of organic matter, which contributes to energy and nutrient transformation in every ecosystem. Yet, little is known about the functional activity of epinecrotic microbial communities associated with carrion. The objective of this study was to provide a description of the carrion associated microbial community functional activity using differential carbon source use throughout decomposition over seasons, between years and when microbial communities were isolated from eukaryotic colonizers (e.g., necrophagous insects). Additionally, microbial communities were identified at the phyletic level using high throughput sequencing during a single study. We hypothesized that carrion microbial community functional profiles would change over the duration of decomposition, and that this change would depend on season, year and presence of necrophagous insect colonization. Biolog EcoPlates™ were used to measure the variation in epinecrotic microbial community function by the differential use of 29 carbon sources throughout vertebrate carrion decomposition. Pyrosequencing was used to describe the bacterial community composition in one experiment to identify key phyla associated with community functional changes. Overall, microbial functional activity increased throughout decomposition in spring, summer and winter while it decreased in autumn. Additionally, microbial functional activity was higher in 2011 when necrophagous arthropod colonizer effects were tested. There were inconsistent trends in the microbial function of communities isolated from remains colonized by necrophagous insects between 2010 and 2011, suggesting a greater need for a mechanistic understanding of the process. These data indicate that functional analyses can be implemented in carrion studies and will be important in understanding the influence of microbial communities on an essential ecosystem process, carrion decomposition. PMID:24265741

  7. Uncoupling of microbial community structure and function in decomposing litter across beech forest ecosystems in Central Europe.

    PubMed

    Purahong, Witoon; Schloter, Michael; Pecyna, Marek J; Kapturska, Danuta; Däumlich, Veronika; Mital, Sanchit; Buscot, François; Hofrichter, Martin; Gutknecht, Jessica L M; Krüger, Dirk

    2014-11-12

    The widespread paradigm in ecology that community structure determines function has recently been challenged by the high complexity of microbial communities. Here, we investigate the patterns of and connections between microbial community structure and microbially-mediated ecological function across different forest management practices and temporal changes in leaf litter across beech forest ecosystems in Central Europe. Our results clearly indicate distinct pattern of microbial community structure in response to forest management and time. However, those patterns were not reflected when potential enzymatic activities of microbes were measured. We postulate that in our forest ecosystems, a disconnect between microbial community structure and function may be present due to differences between the drivers of microbial growth and those of microbial function.

  8. Microbial Communities of Continuously Cropped, Irrigated Rice Fields

    PubMed Central

    Reichardt, W.; Mascarina, G.; Padre, B.; Doll, J.

    1997-01-01

    In continuously cropped, irrigated rice fields, soil microbial biomass as measured by total phospholipid fatty acid concentrations declined during the second half of the crop cycle. This decline was also observed in other components of the microbial community assessed by viable counts, including denitrifiers and sporeformers. Simultaneous with total biomass decline was the increase in potential indicators of nutrient stress--such as ratios of cyclopropanol ((Sigma)[cy/(omega)7c]) and trans ((Sigma)[(omega)7t/(omega)7c]) phospholipid fatty acids--in plain crop soil but not in the rhizosphere. Polyhydroxyalkanoate levels were enhanced in the root environment of mature rice. Polyunsaturated eukaryotic biomarkers accounted for only 13 to 16 mol% of the total phospholipids, including 2 mol% of 18:2(omega)6, which is considered a fungal biomarker. Single biomarkers for defined physiological groups of bacteria did not follow the declining trend of total microbial biomass. Signature compounds for gram-positive and gram-negative fermenters (plasmalogen phospholipids), methanogenic bacteria (diether lipids), and methanotrophs (18:1(omega)8c) increased as the crop approached maturity. Methanotrophs were not particularly enriched in the rhizosphere. Methanogenic biomarkers were, however, most abundant in root extracts from mature rice plants. Assuming that soil microbial biomass plays a significant role as a passive nutrient pool, its reduction during the second half of the cropping season suggests a mechanism that may ultimately contribute to declining productivity in irrigated, continuous rice cropping systems. PMID:16535489

  9. Identifying the microbial communities and operational conditions for optimized wastewater treatment in microbial fuel cells.

    PubMed

    Ishii, Shun'ichi; Suzuki, Shino; Norden-Krichmar, Trina M; Wu, Angela; Yamanaka, Yuko; Nealson, Kenneth H; Bretschger, Orianna

    2013-12-01

    Microbial fuel cells (MFCs) are devices that exploit microorganisms as "biocatalysts" to recover energy from organic matter in the form of electricity. MFCs have been explored as possible energy neutral wastewater treatment systems; however, fundamental knowledge is still required about how MFC-associated microbial communities are affected by different operational conditions and can be optimized for accelerated wastewater treatment rates. In this study, we explored how electricity-generating microbial biofilms were established at MFC anodes and responded to three different operational conditions during wastewater treatment: 1) MFC operation using a 750 Ω external resistor (0.3 mA current production); 2) set-potential (SP) operation with the anode electrode potentiostatically controlled to +100 mV vs SHE (4.0 mA current production); and 3) open circuit (OC) operation (zero current generation). For all reactors, primary clarifier effluent collected from a municipal wastewater plant was used as the sole carbon and microbial source. Batch operation demonstrated nearly complete organic matter consumption after a residence time of 8-12 days for the MFC condition, 4-6 days for the SP condition, and 15-20 days for the OC condition. These results indicate that higher current generation accelerates organic matter degradation during MFC wastewater treatment. The microbial community analysis was conducted for the three reactors using 16S rRNA gene sequencing. Although the inoculated wastewater was dominated by members of Epsilonproteobacteria, Gammaproteobacteria, and Bacteroidetes species, the electricity-generating biofilms in MFC and SP reactors were dominated by Deltaproteobacteria and Bacteroidetes. Within Deltaproteobacteria, phylotypes classified to family Desulfobulbaceae and Geobacteraceae increased significantly under the SP condition with higher current generation; however those phylotypes were not found in the OC reactor. These analyses suggest that species

  10. Citrate and malonate increase microbial activity and alter microbial community composition in uncontaminated and diesel-contaminated soil microcosms

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Martin, Belinda C.; George, Suman J.; Price, Charles A.; Shahsavari, Esmaeil; Ball, Andrew S.; Tibbett, Mark; Ryan, Megan H.

    2016-09-01

    Petroleum hydrocarbons (PHCs) are among the most prevalent sources of environmental contamination. It has been hypothesized that plant root exudation of low molecular weight organic acid anions (carboxylates) may aid degradation of PHCs by stimulating heterotrophic microbial activity. To test their potential implication for bioremediation, we applied two commonly exuded carboxylates (citrate and malonate) to uncontaminated and diesel-contaminated microcosms (10 000 mg kg-1; aged 40 days) and determined their impact on the microbial community and PHC degradation. Every 48 h for 18 days, soil received 5 µmol g-1 of (i) citrate, (ii) malonate, (iii) citrate + malonate or (iv) water. Microbial activity was measured daily as the flux of CO2. After 18 days, changes in the microbial community were assessed by a community-level physiological profile (CLPP) and 16S rRNA bacterial community profiles determined by denaturing gradient gel electrophoresis (DGGE). Saturated PHCs remaining in the soil were assessed by gas chromatography-mass spectrometry (GC-MS). Cumulative soil respiration increased 4- to 6-fold with the addition of carboxylates, while diesel contamination resulted in a small, but similar, increase across all carboxylate treatments. The addition of carboxylates resulted in distinct changes to the microbial community in both contaminated and uncontaminated soils but only a small increase in the biodegradation of saturated PHCs as measured by the n-C17 : pristane biomarker. We conclude that while the addition of citrate and malonate had little direct effect on the biodegradation of saturated hydrocarbons present in diesel, their effect on the microbial community leads us to suggest further studies using a variety of soils and organic acids, and linked to in situ studies of plants, to investigate the role of carboxylates in microbial community dynamics.

  11. Response of a salt marsh microbial community to antibiotic contamination.

    PubMed

    Fernandes, Joana P; Almeida, C Marisa R; Basto, M Clara P; Mucha, Ana P

    2015-11-01

    Salt marsh plants and associated microorganisms can have an important role in contaminant removal from estuaries, through bioremediation processes. Nevertheless, the interaction between emerging contaminants, namely antibiotics, and plant-microorganism associations in estuarine environment are still scarcely known. In this vein, the aim of the present study was to evaluate, in controlled conditions, the response of a salt marsh plant-microorganism association to a contamination with a veterinary antibiotic. For that a salt marsh plant (Phragmites australis) and its respective rhizosediment were collected in a temperate estuary (Lima estuary, NW Portugal) and exposed for 7 days to enrofloxacin (ENR) under different nutritional conditions in sediment elutriates. Response was evaluated in terms of ENR removal and changes in microbial community structure (evaluated by ARISA) and abundance (estimated by DAPI). In general, no significant changes were observed in microbial abundance. Changes in bacterial richness and diversity were observed but only in unplanted systems. However, multivariate analysis of ARISA profiles showed significant effect of both the presence of plant and type of treatment on the microbial community structure, with significant differences among all treatment groups. In addition, plants and associated microorganisms presented a potential for antibiotic removal that, although highly dependent on their nutritional status, can be a valuable asset to recover impacted areas such as estuarine ones.

  12. Effects of octahedral molecular sieve on treatment performance, microbial metabolism, and microbial community in expanded granular sludge bed reactor.

    PubMed

    Pan, Fei; Xu, Aihua; Xia, Dongsheng; Yu, Yang; Chen, Guo; Meyer, Melissa; Zhao, Dongye; Huang, Ching-Hua; Wu, Qihang; Fu, Jie

    2015-12-15

    This study evaluated the effects of synthesized octahedral molecular sieve (OMS-2) nanoparticles on the anaerobic microbial community in a model digester, expanded granular sludge bed (EGSB) reactor. The addition of OMS-2 (0.025 g/L) in the EGSB reactors resulted in an enhanced operational performance, i.e., COD removal and biogas production increased by 4% and 11% respectively, and effluent volatile fatty acid (VFA) decreased by 11% relative to the control group. The Biolog EcoPlate™ test was employed to investigate microbial metabolism in the EGSB reactors. Results showed that OMS-2 not only increased the microbial metabolic level but also significantly changed the community level physiological profiling of the microorganisms. The Illumina MiSeq high-throughput sequencing of 16S rRNA gene indicated OMS-2 enhanced the microbial diversity and altered the community structure. The largest bacterial genus Lactococcus, a lactic acid bacterium, reduced from 29.3% to 20.4% by abundance in the presence of 0.25 g/L OMS-2, which may be conducive to decreasing the VFA production and increasing the microbial diversity. OMS-2 also increased the quantities of acetogenic bacteria and Archaea, and promoted the acetogenesis and methanogenesis. The X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy illustrated that Mn(IV)/Mn(III) with high redox potential in OMS-2 were reduced to Mn(II) in the EGSB reactors; this in turn affected the microbial community.

  13. Successive DNA extractions improve characterization of soil microbial communities

    PubMed Central

    de Hollander, Mattias; Smidt, Hauke; van Veen, Johannes A.

    2017-01-01

    Currently, characterization of soil microbial communities relies heavily on the use of molecular approaches. Independently of the approach used, soil DNA extraction is a crucial step, and success of downstream procedures will depend on how well DNA extraction was performed. Often, studies describing and comparing soil microbial communities are based on a single DNA extraction, which may not lead to a representative recovery of DNA from all organisms present in the soil. The use of successive DNA extractions might improve soil microbial characterization, but the benefit of this approach has only been limitedly studied. To determine whether successive DNA extractions of the same soil sample would lead to different observations in terms of microbial abundance and community composition, we performed three successive extractions, with two widely used commercial kits, on a range of clay and sandy soils. Successive extractions increased DNA yield considerably (1–374%), as well as total bacterial and fungal abundances in most of the soil samples. Analysis of the 16S and 18S ribosomal RNA genes using 454-pyrosequencing, revealed that microbial community composition (taxonomic groups) observed in the successive DNA extractions were similar. However, successive DNA extractions did reveal several additional microbial groups. For some soil samples, shifts in microbial community composition were observed, mainly due to shifts in relative abundance of a number of microbial groups. Our results highlight that performing successive DNA extractions optimize DNA yield, and can lead to a better picture of overall community composition. PMID:28168105

  14. Substrate-induced changes in microbial community-level physiological profiles and their application to discriminate soil microbial communities.

    PubMed

    Chen, Jian; Xie, Huijun; Zhuang, Xuliangli; Zhuang, Guoqiang; Bai, Zhihui; Zhang, Hongxun

    2008-01-01

    The addition of simple substrates could affect the microbial respiration in soils. This substrate-induced respiration is widely used to estimate the soil microbial biomass, but little attention has been paid to its influence on the changes of community-level physiological profiles. In this study, the process of microbial communities responding to the added substrate using sole-carbon-source utilization (BIOLOG) was investigated. BIOLOG is biased toward fast-growing bacteria; this advantage was taken to detect the prompt response of the active microbial communities to the added substrate. Four soil samples from agricultural fields adjacent to heavy metal mines were amended with L-arginine, citric acid, or D-glucose. Substrate amendments could, generally, not only increase the metabolic activity of the microbial communities, but also change the metabolic diverse patterns compared with no-substrate control. By tracking the process, it was found that the variance between substrate-induced treatment and control fluctuated greatly during the incubation course, and the influences of these three substrates were different. In addition, the application of these induced changes to discriminate soil microbial communities was tested. The distance among all samples was greatly increased, which further showed the functional variance among microbial communities in soils. This can be very useful in the discrimination of microbial communities even with high similarity.

  15. Electrosynthesis of Commodity Chemicals by an Autotrophic Microbial Community

    PubMed Central

    Marshall, Christopher W.; Ross, Daniel E.; Fichot, Erin B.; Norman, R. Sean

    2012-01-01

    A microbial community originating from brewery waste produced methane, acetate, and hydrogen when selected on a granular graphite cathode poised at −590 mV versus the standard hydrogen electrode (SHE) with CO2 as the only carbon source. This is the first report on the simultaneous electrosynthesis of these commodity chemicals and the first description of electroacetogenesis by a microbial community. Deep sequencing of the active community 16S rRNA revealed a dynamic microbial community composed of an invariant Archaea population of Methanobacterium spp. and a shifting Bacteria population. Acetobacterium spp. were the most abundant Bacteria on the cathode when acetogenesis dominated. Methane was generally the dominant product with rates increasing from <1 to 7 mM day−1 (per cathode liquid volume) and was concomitantly produced with acetate and hydrogen. Acetogenesis increased to >4 mM day−1 (accumulated to 28.5 mM over 12 days), and methanogenesis ceased following the addition of 2-bromoethanesulfonic acid. Traces of hydrogen accumulated during initial selection and subsequently accelerated to >11 mM day−1 (versus 0.045 mM day−1 abiotic production). The hypothesis of electrosynthetic biocatalysis occurring at the microbe-electrode interface was supported by a catalytic wave (midpoint potential of −460 mV versus SHE) in cyclic voltammetry scans of the biocathode, the lack of redox active components in the medium, and the generation of comparatively high amounts of products (even after medium exchange). In addition, the volumetric production rates of these three commodity chemicals are marked improvements for electrosynthesis, advancing the process toward economic feasibility. PMID:23001672

  16. Molecular analysis of the benthos microbial community in Zavarzin thermal spring (Uzon Caldera, Kamchatka, Russia)

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    Background Geothermal areas are of great interest for the study of microbial communities. The results of such investigations can be used in a variety of fields (ecology, microbiology, medicine) to answer fundamental questions, as well as those with practical benefits. Uzon caldera is located in the Uzon-Geyser depression that is situated in the centre of the Karym-Semyachin region of the East Kamchatka graben-synclinorium. The microbial communities of Zavarzin spring are well studied; however, its benthic microbial mat has not been previously described. Results Pyrosequencing of the V3 region of the 16S rRNA gene was used to study the benthic microbial community of the Zavarzin thermal spring (Uzon Caldera, Kamchatka). The community is dominated by bacteria (>95% of all sequences), including thermophilic, chemoorganotrophic Caldiserica (33.0%) and Dictyoglomi (24.8%). The benthic community and the previously examined planktonic community of Zavarzin spring have qualitatively similar, but quantitatively different, compositions. Conclusions In this study, we performed a metagenomic analysis of the benthic microbial mat of Zavarzin spring. We compared this benthic community to microbial communities found in the water and of an integral probe consisting of water and bottom sediments. Various phylogenetic groups of microorganisms, including potentially new ones, represent the full-fledged trophic system of Zavarzin. A thorough geochemical study of the spring was performed. PMID:25563397

  17. Microbial community changes along the active seepage site of one cold seep in the Red Sea

    PubMed Central

    Cao, Huiluo; Zhang, Weipeng; Wang, Yong; Qian, Pei-Yuan

    2015-01-01

    The active seepage of the marine cold seeps could be a critical process for the exchange of energy between the submerged geosphere and the sea floor environment through organic-rich fluids, potentially even affecting surrounding microbial habitats. However, few studies have investigated the associated microbial community changes. In the present study, 16S rRNA genes were pyrosequenced to decipher changes in the microbial communities from the Thuwal seepage point in the Red Sea to nearby marine sediments in the brine pool, normal marine sediments and water, and benthic microbial mats. An unexpected number of reads from unclassified groups were detected in these habitats; however, the ecological functions of these groups remain unresolved. Furthermore, ammonia-oxidizing archaeal community structures were investigated using the ammonia monooxygenase subunit A (amoA) gene. Analysis of amoA showed that planktonic marine habitats, including seeps and marine water, hosted archaeal ammonia oxidizers that differed from those in microbial mats and marine sediments, suggesting modifications of the ammonia oxidizing archaeal (AOA) communities along the environmental gradient from active seepage sites to peripheral areas. Changes in the microbial community structure of AOA in different habitats (water vs. sediment) potentially correlated with changes in salinity and oxygen concentrations. Overall, the present results revealed for the first time unanticipated novel microbial groups and changes in the ammonia-oxidizing archaea in response to environmental gradients near the active seepages of a cold seep. PMID:26284035

  18. Microbial community changes along the active seepage site of one cold seep in the Red Sea.

    PubMed

    Cao, Huiluo; Zhang, Weipeng; Wang, Yong; Qian, Pei-Yuan

    2015-01-01

    The active seepage of the marine cold seeps could be a critical process for the exchange of energy between the submerged geosphere and the sea floor environment through organic-rich fluids, potentially even affecting surrounding microbial habitats. However, few studies have investigated the associated microbial community changes. In the present study, 16S rRNA genes were pyrosequenced to decipher changes in the microbial communities from the Thuwal seepage point in the Red Sea to nearby marine sediments in the brine pool, normal marine sediments and water, and benthic microbial mats. An unexpected number of reads from unclassified groups were detected in these habitats; however, the ecological functions of these groups remain unresolved. Furthermore, ammonia-oxidizing archaeal community structures were investigated using the ammonia monooxygenase subunit A (amoA) gene. Analysis of amoA showed that planktonic marine habitats, including seeps and marine water, hosted archaeal ammonia oxidizers that differed from those in microbial mats and marine sediments, suggesting modifications of the ammonia oxidizing archaeal (AOA) communities along the environmental gradient from active seepage sites to peripheral areas. Changes in the microbial community structure of AOA in different habitats (water vs. sediment) potentially correlated with changes in salinity and oxygen concentrations. Overall, the present results revealed for the first time unanticipated novel microbial groups and changes in the ammonia-oxidizing archaea in response to environmental gradients near the active seepages of a cold seep.

  19. Comparative Metagenomics of Freshwater Microbial Communities

    SciTech Connect

    Hemme, Chris; Deng, Ye; Tu, Qichao; Fields, Matthew; Gentry, Terry; Wu, Liyou; Tringe, Susannah; Watson, David; He, Zhili; Hazen, Terry; Tiedje, James; Rubin, Eddy; Zhou, Jizhong

    2010-05-17

    Previous analyses of a microbial metagenome from uranium and nitric-acid contaminated groundwater (FW106) showed significant environmental effects resulting from the rapid introduction of multiple contaminants. Effects include a massive loss of species and strain biodiversity, accumulation of toxin resistant genes in the metagenome and lateral transfer of toxin resistance genes between community members. To better understand these results in an ecological context, a second metagenome from a pristine groundwater system located along the same geological strike was sequenced and analyzed (FW301). It is hypothesized that FW301 approximates the ancestral FW106 community based on phylogenetic profiles and common geological parameters; however, even if is not the case, the datasets still permit comparisons between healthy and stressed groundwater ecosystems. Complex carbohydrate metabolism has been almost entirely lost in the stressed ecosystem. In contrast, the pristine system encodes a wide diversity of complex carbohydrate metabolism systems, suggesting that carbon turnover is very rapid and less leaky in the healthy groundwater system. FW301 encodes many (~;;160+) carbon monoxide dehydrogenase genes while FW106 encodes none. This result suggests that the community is frequently exposed to oxygen from aerated rainwater percolating into the subsurface, with a resulting high rate of carbon metabolism and CO production. When oxygen levels fall, the CO then serves as a major carbon source for the community. FW301 appears to be capable of CO2 fixation via the reductive carboxylase (reverse TCA) cycle and possibly acetogenesis, activities; these activities are lacking in the heterotrophic FW106 system which relies exclusively on respiration of nitrate and/or oxygen for energy production. FW301 encodes a complete set of B12 biosynthesis pathway at high abundance suggesting the use of sodium gradients for energy production in the healthy groundwater community. Overall

  20. Microbial community structure of a freshwater system receiving wastewater effluent.

    PubMed

    Hladilek, Matthew D; Gaines, Karen F; Novak, James M; Collard, David A; Johnson, Daniel B; Canam, Thomas

    2016-11-01

    Despite our dependency on treatment facilities to condition wastewater for eventual release to the environment, our knowledge regarding the effects of treated water on the local watershed is extremely limited. Responses of lotic systems to the treated wastewater effluent have been traditionally investigated by examining the benthic macroinvertebrate assemblages and community structure; however, these studies do not address the microbial diversity of the water systems. In the present study, planktonic and benthic bacterial community structure were examined at 14 sites (from 60 m upstream to 12,100 m downstream) and at two time points along an aquatic system receiving treated effluent from the Charleston Wastewater Treatment Plant (Charleston, IL). Total bacterial DNA was isolated and 16S rRNA sequences were analyzed using a metagenomics platform. The community structure in planktonic bacterial communities was significantly correlated with dissolved oxygen concentration. Benthic bacterial communities were not correlated with water quality but did have a significant geographic structuring. A local restructuring effect was observed in both planktonic and benthic communities near the treated wastewater effluent, which was characterized by an increase in abundance of sphingobacteria. Sites further downstream from the wastewater facility appeared to be less influenced by the effluent. Overall, the present study demonstrated the utility of targeted high-throughput sequencing as a tool to assess the effects of treated wastewater effluent on a receiving water system, and highlighted the potential for this technology to be used for routine monitoring by wastewater facilities.

  1. Microbial communities associated with the invasive Hawaiian sponge Mycale armata.

    PubMed

    Wang, Guangyi; Yoon, Sang-Hwal; Lefait, Emilie

    2009-03-01

    Microbial symbionts are fundamentally important to their host ecology, but microbial communities of invasive marine species remain largely unexplored. Clone libraries and Denaturing gradient gel electrophoresis analyses revealed diverse microbial phylotypes in the invasive marine sponge Mycale armata. Phylotypes were related to eight phyla: Proteobacteria, Actinobacteria, Bacteroidetes, Cyanobacteria, Acidobacteria, Chloroflexi, Crenarchaeota and Firmicutes, with predominant alphaproteobacterial sequences (>58%). Three Bacterial Phylotype Groups (BPG1--associated only with sequence from marine sponges; BPG2--associated with sponges and other marine organisms and BPG3--potential new phylotypes) were identified in M. armata. The operational taxonomic units (OTU) of cluster BPG2-B, belonging to Rhodobacteraceae, are dominant sequences of two clone libraries of M. armata, but constitute only a small fraction of sequences from the non-invasive sponge Dysidea sp. Six OTUs from M. armata were potential new phylotypes because of their low sequence identity with their reference sequences. Our results suggest that M. armata harbors both sponge-specific phylotypes and bacterial phylotypes from other marine organisms.

  2. Adaptation of Aquatic Microbial Communities to Quaternary Ammonium Compounds

    PubMed Central

    Ventullo, Roy M.; Larson, Robert J.

    1986-01-01

    The effects of long-chain (C12 to C18) quaternary ammonium compounds (QACs) on the density, heterotrophic activity, and biodegradation capabilities of heterotrophic bacteria were examined in situ in a lake ecosystem. Monoalkyl and dialkyl substituted QACs were tested over a range of concentrations (0.001 to 10 mg/liter) in both acute (3 h) and chronic (21 day) exposures. In general, none of the QACs tested had significant adverse effects on bacterial densities in either acute or chronic studies. However, significant decreases in bacterial heterotrophic activity were noted in acute studies at QAC concentrations from 0.1 to 10 mg/liter. Chronic exposure of lake microbial communities to a specific monoalkyl QAC resulted in an adaptive response and recovery of heterotrophic activity. No-observable-effect level in the adapted populations was >10 mg/liter. Chronic exposure also resulted in significant increases in the number and activity of bacteria capable of biodegrading the material. The increase in biodegradation capability was observed at low (microgram per liter) concentrations which are approximately the same as realistic environmental levels. In general, our studies indicated that exposure of lake microbial communities to QACs results in the development of adapted communities which are less sensitive to potential toxic effects and more active in the biodegradation of these materials. PMID:16346991

  3. Shifts in Microbial Community and Its Correlation with Degradative Efficiency in a Wastewater Treatment Plant.

    PubMed

    Kapley, Atya; Liu, Ruyin; Jadeja, Niti B; Zhang, Yu; Yang, Min; Purohit, Hemant J

    2015-08-01

    A wastewater treatment plant controls the level of pollution reaching the environment. Yet, despite being the most common aerobic route for treatment of wastewater, the activated sludge process is not utilized to its full potential. This is mainly due to the lack of knowledge base correlating the microbial community in the activated sludge to its degradative performance. In this study, the activated biomass at the treatment site was monitored for five consecutive months. Even though operational parameters were kept constant, the microbial community was observed to change after 3 months. This shift was seen to correlate with 25 % loss of degradative efficiency. Target oxygenases were monitored at two time points, and results indicated that the dominating pathway operating in the common effluent treatment plant (CETP) is the degradation of chlorinated aromatics. This study demonstrates the change in degradative efficiency in a CETP with the change in microbial community and analyzes the parameters influencing the microbial community of activated sludge.

  4. Integrating Ecological and Engineering Concepts of Resilience in Microbial Communities.

    PubMed

    Song, Hyun-Seob; Renslow, Ryan S; Fredrickson, Jim K; Lindemann, Stephen R

    2015-01-01

    Many definitions of resilience have been proffered for natural and engineered ecosystems, but a conceptual consensus on resilience in microbial communities is still lacking. We argue that the disconnect largely results from the wide variance in microbial community complexity, which range from compositionally simple synthetic consortia to complex natural communities, and divergence between the typical practical outcomes emphasized by ecologists and engineers. Viewing microbial communities as elasto-plastic systems that undergo both recoverable and unrecoverable transitions, we argue that this gap between the engineering and ecological definitions of resilience stems from their respective emphases on elastic and plastic deformation, respectively. We propose that the two concepts may be fundamentally united around the resilience of function rather than state in microbial communities and the regularity in the relationship between environmental variation and a community's functional response. Furthermore, we posit that functional resilience is an intrinsic property of microbial communities and suggest that state changes in response to environmental variation may be a key mechanism driving functional resilience in microbial communities.

  5. Mangrove succession enriches the sediment microbial community in South China

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chen, Quan; Zhao, Qian; Li, Jing; Jian, Shuguang; Ren, Hai

    2016-06-01

    Sediment microorganisms help create and maintain mangrove ecosystems. Although the changes in vegetation during mangrove forest succession have been well studied, the changes in the sediment microbial community during mangrove succession are poorly understood. To investigate the changes in the sediment microbial community during succession of mangroves at Zhanjiang, South China, we used phospholipid fatty acid (PLFA) analysis and the following chronosequence from primary to climax community: unvegetated shoal; Avicennia marina community; Aegiceras corniculatum community; and Bruguiera gymnorrhiza + Rhizophora stylosa community. The PLFA concentrations of all sediment microbial groups (total microorganisms, fungi, gram-positive bacteria, gram-negative bacteria, and actinomycetes) increased significantly with each stage of mangrove succession. Microbial PLFA concentrations in the sediment were significantly lower in the wet season than in the dry season. Regression and ordination analyses indicated that the changes in the microbial community with mangrove succession were mainly associated with properties of the aboveground vegetation (mainly plant height) and the sediment (mainly sediment organic matter and total nitrogen). The changes in the sediment microbial community can probably be explained by increases in nutrients and microhabitat heterogeneity during mangrove succession.

  6. Mangrove succession enriches the sediment microbial community in South China

    PubMed Central

    Chen, Quan; Zhao, Qian; Li, Jing; Jian, Shuguang; Ren, Hai

    2016-01-01

    Sediment microorganisms help create and maintain mangrove ecosystems. Although the changes in vegetation during mangrove forest succession have been well studied, the changes in the sediment microbial community during mangrove succession are poorly understood. To investigate the changes in the sediment microbial community during succession of mangroves at Zhanjiang, South China, we used phospholipid fatty acid (PLFA) analysis and the following chronosequence from primary to climax community: unvegetated shoal; Avicennia marina community; Aegiceras corniculatum community; and Bruguiera gymnorrhiza + Rhizophora stylosa community. The PLFA concentrations of all sediment microbial groups (total microorganisms, fungi, gram-positive bacteria, gram-negative bacteria, and actinomycetes) increased significantly with each stage of mangrove succession. Microbial PLFA concentrations in the sediment were significantly lower in the wet season than in the dry season. Regression and ordination analyses indicated that the changes in the microbial community with mangrove succession were mainly associated with properties of the aboveground vegetation (mainly plant height) and the sediment (mainly sediment organic matter and total nitrogen). The changes in the sediment microbial community can probably be explained by increases in nutrients and microhabitat heterogeneity during mangrove succession. PMID:27265262

  7. Mangrove succession enriches the sediment microbial community in South China.

    PubMed

    Chen, Quan; Zhao, Qian; Li, Jing; Jian, Shuguang; Ren, Hai

    2016-06-06

    Sediment microorganisms help create and maintain mangrove ecosystems. Although the changes in vegetation during mangrove forest succession have been well studied, the changes in the sediment microbial community during mangrove succession are poorly understood. To investigate the changes in the sediment microbial community during succession of mangroves at Zhanjiang, South China, we used phospholipid fatty acid (PLFA) analysis and the following chronosequence from primary to climax community: unvegetated shoal; Avicennia marina community; Aegiceras corniculatum community; and Bruguiera gymnorrhiza + Rhizophora stylosa community. The PLFA concentrations of all sediment microbial groups (total microorganisms, fungi, gram-positive bacteria, gram-negative bacteria, and actinomycetes) increased significantly with each stage of mangrove succession. Microbial PLFA concentrations in the sediment were significantly lower in the wet season than in the dry season. Regression and ordination analyses indicated that the changes in the microbial community with mangrove succession were mainly associated with properties of the aboveground vegetation (mainly plant height) and the sediment (mainly sediment organic matter and total nitrogen). The changes in the sediment microbial community can probably be explained by increases in nutrients and microhabitat heterogeneity during mangrove succession.

  8. Integrating Ecological and Engineering Concepts of Resilience in Microbial Communities

    PubMed Central

    Song, Hyun-Seob; Renslow, Ryan S.; Fredrickson, Jim K.; Lindemann, Stephen R.

    2015-01-01

    Many definitions of resilience have been proffered for natural and engineered ecosystems, but a conceptual consensus on resilience in microbial communities is still lacking. We argue that the disconnect largely results from the wide variance in microbial community complexity, which range from compositionally simple synthetic consortia to complex natural communities, and divergence between the typical practical outcomes emphasized by ecologists and engineers. Viewing microbial communities as elasto-plastic systems that undergo both recoverable and unrecoverable transitions, we argue that this gap between the engineering and ecological definitions of resilience stems from their respective emphases on elastic and plastic deformation, respectively. We propose that the two concepts may be fundamentally united around the resilience of function rather than state in microbial communities and the regularity in the relationship between environmental variation and a community's functional response. Furthermore, we posit that functional resilience is an intrinsic property of microbial communities and suggest that state changes in response to environmental variation may be a key mechanism driving functional resilience in microbial communities. PMID:26648912

  9. Environmental Drivers of Differences in Microbial Community Structure in Crude Oil Reservoirs across a Methanogenic Gradient

    PubMed Central

    Shelton, Jenna L.; Akob, Denise M.; McIntosh, Jennifer C.; Fierer, Noah; Spear, John R.; Warwick, Peter D.; McCray, John E.

    2016-01-01

    Stimulating in situ microbial communities in oil reservoirs to produce natural gas is a potentially viable strategy for recovering additional fossil fuel resources following traditional recovery operations. Little is known about what geochemical parameters drive microbial population dynamics in biodegraded, methanogenic oil reservoirs. We investigated if microbial community structure was significantly impacted by the extent of crude oil biodegradation, extent of biogenic methane production, and formation water chemistry. Twenty-two oil production wells from north central Louisiana, USA, were sampled for analysis of microbial community structure and fluid geochemistry. Archaea were the dominant microbial community in the majority of the wells sampled. Methanogens, including hydrogenotrophic and methylotrophic organisms, were numerically dominant in every well, accounting for, on average, over 98% of the total Archaea present. The dominant Bacteria groups were Pseudomonas, Acinetobacter, Enterobacteriaceae, and Clostridiales, which have also been identified in other microbially-altered oil reservoirs. Comparing microbial community structure to fluid (gas, water, and oil) geochemistry revealed that the relative extent of biodegradation, salinity, and spatial location were the major drivers of microbial diversity. Archaeal relative abundance was independent of the extent of methanogenesis, but closely correlated to the extent of crude oil biodegradation; therefore, microbial community structure is likely not a good sole predictor of methanogenic activity, but may predict the extent of crude oil biodegradation. However, when the shallow, highly biodegraded, low salinity wells were excluded from the statistical analysis, no environmental parameters could explain the differences in microbial community structure. This suggests that the microbial community structure of the 5 shallow, up-dip wells was different than the 17 deeper, down-dip wells. Also, the 17 down-dip wells

  10. Environmental drivers of differences in microbial community structure in crude oil reservoirs across a methanogenic gradient

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Shelton, Jenna L.; Akob, Denise M.; McIntosh, Jennifer C.; Fierer, Noah; Spear, John R.; Warwick, Peter D.; McCray, John E.

    2016-01-01

    Stimulating in situ microbial communities in oil reservoirs to produce natural gas is a potentially viable strategy for recovering additional fossil fuel resources following traditional recovery operations. Little is known about what geochemical parameters drive microbial population dynamics in biodegraded, methanogenic oil reservoirs. We investigated if microbial community structure was significantly impacted by the extent of crude oil biodegradation, extent of biogenic methane production, and formation water chemistry. Twenty-two oil production wells from north central Louisiana, USA, were sampled for analysis of microbial community structure and fluid geochemistry. Archaea were the dominant microbial community in the majority of the wells sampled. Methanogens, including hydrogenotrophic and methylotrophic organisms, were numerically dominant in every well, accounting for, on average, over 98% of the total Archaea present. The dominant Bacteria groups were Pseudomonas, Acinetobacter, Enterobacteriaceae, and Clostridiales, which have also been identified in other microbially-altered oil reservoirs. Comparing microbial community structure to fluid (gas, water, and oil) geochemistry revealed that the relative extent of biodegradation, salinity, and spatial location were the major drivers of microbial diversity. Archaeal relative abundance was independent of the extent of methanogenesis, but closely correlated to the extent of crude oil biodegradation; therefore, microbial community structure is likely not a good sole predictor of methanogenic activity, but may predict the extent of crude oil biodegradation. However, when the shallow, highly biodegraded, low salinity wells were excluded from the statistical analysis, no environmental parameters could explain the differences in microbial community structure. This suggests that the microbial community structure of the 5 shallow, up-dip wells was different than the 17 deeper, down-dip wells. Also, the 17 down-dip wells

  11. Environmental Drivers of Differences in Microbial Community Structure in Crude Oil Reservoirs across a Methanogenic Gradient.

    PubMed

    Shelton, Jenna L; Akob, Denise M; McIntosh, Jennifer C; Fierer, Noah; Spear, John R; Warwick, Peter D; McCray, John E

    2016-01-01

    Stimulating in situ microbial communities in oil reservoirs to produce natural gas is a potentially viable strategy for recovering additional fossil fuel resources following traditional recovery operations. Little is known about what geochemical parameters drive microbial population dynamics in biodegraded, methanogenic oil reservoirs. We investigated if microbial community structure was significantly impacted by the extent of crude oil biodegradation, extent of biogenic methane production, and formation water chemistry. Twenty-two oil production wells from north central Louisiana, USA, were sampled for analysis of microbial community structure and fluid geochemistry. Archaea were the dominant microbial community in the majority of the wells sampled. Methanogens, including hydrogenotrophic and methylotrophic organisms, were numerically dominant in every well, accounting for, on average, over 98% of the total Archaea present. The dominant Bacteria groups were Pseudomonas, Acinetobacter, Enterobacteriaceae, and Clostridiales, which have also been identified in other microbially-altered oil reservoirs. Comparing microbial community structure to fluid (gas, water, and oil) geochemistry revealed that the relative extent of biodegradation, salinity, and spatial location were the major drivers of microbial diversity. Archaeal relative abundance was independent of the extent of methanogenesis, but closely correlated to the extent of crude oil biodegradation; therefore, microbial community structure is likely not a good sole predictor of methanogenic activity, but may predict the extent of crude oil biodegradation. However, when the shallow, highly biodegraded, low salinity wells were excluded from the statistical analysis, no environmental parameters could explain the differences in microbial community structure. This suggests that the microbial community structure of the 5 shallow, up-dip wells was different than the 17 deeper, down-dip wells. Also, the 17 down-dip wells

  12. Microbial Communities Are Well Adapted to Disturbances in Energy Input

    PubMed Central

    Vallino, Joseph J.

    2016-01-01

    ABSTRACT Although microbial systems are well suited for studying concepts in ecological theory, little is known about how microbial communities respond to long-term periodic perturbations beyond diel oscillations. Taking advantage of an ongoing microcosm experiment, we studied how methanotrophic microbial communities adapted to disturbances in energy input over a 20-day cycle period. Sequencing of bacterial 16S rRNA genes together with quantification of microbial abundance and ecosystem function were used to explore the long-term dynamics (510 days) of methanotrophic communities under continuous versus cyclic chemical energy supply. We observed that microbial communities appeared inherently well adapted to disturbances in energy input and that changes in community structure in both treatments were more dependent on internal dynamics than on external forcing. The results also showed that the rare biosphere was critical to seeding the internal community dynamics, perhaps due to cross-feeding or other strategies. We conclude that in our experimental system, internal feedbacks were more important than external drivers in shaping the community dynamics over time, suggesting that ecosystems can maintain their function despite inherently unstable community dynamics. IMPORTANCE Within the broader ecological context, biological communities are often viewed as stable and as only experiencing succession or replacement when subject to external perturbations, such as changes in food availability or the introduction of exotic species. Our findings indicate that microbial communities can exhibit strong internal dynamics that may be more important in shaping community succession than external drivers. Dynamic “unstable” communities may be important for ecosystem functional stability, with rare organisms playing an important role in community restructuring. Understanding the mechanisms responsible for internal community dynamics will certainly be required for understanding and

  13. Microbial Communities Are Well Adapted to Disturbances in Energy Input.

    PubMed

    Fernandez-Gonzalez, Nuria; Huber, Julie A; Vallino, Joseph J

    2016-01-01

    Although microbial systems are well suited for studying concepts in ecological theory, little is known about how microbial communities respond to long-term periodic perturbations beyond diel oscillations. Taking advantage of an ongoing microcosm experiment, we studied how methanotrophic microbial communities adapted to disturbances in energy input over a 20-day cycle period. Sequencing of bacterial 16S rRNA genes together with quantification of microbial abundance and ecosystem function were used to explore the long-term dynamics (510 days) of methanotrophic communities under continuous versus cyclic chemical energy supply. We observed that microbial communities appeared inherently well adapted to disturbances in energy input and that changes in community structure in both treatments were more dependent on internal dynamics than on external forcing. The results also showed that the rare biosphere was critical to seeding the internal community dynamics, perhaps due to cross-feeding or other strategies. We conclude that in our experimental system, internal feedbacks were more important than external drivers in shaping the community dynamics over time, suggesting that ecosystems can maintain their function despite inherently unstable community dynamics. IMPORTANCE Within the broader ecological context, biological communities are often viewed as stable and as only experiencing succession or replacement when subject to external perturbations, such as changes in food availability or the introduction of exotic species. Our findings indicate that microbial communities can exhibit strong internal dynamics that may be more important in shaping community succession than external drivers. Dynamic "unstable" communities may be important for ecosystem functional stability, with rare organisms playing an important role in community restructuring. Understanding the mechanisms responsible for internal community dynamics will certainly be required for understanding and manipulating

  14. Pyrosequencing Based Microbial Community Analysis of Stabilized Mine Soils

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Park, J. E.; Lee, B. T.; Son, A.

    2015-12-01

    Heavy metals leached from exhausted mines have been causing severe environmental problems in nearby soils and groundwater. Environmental mitigation was performed based on the heavy metal stabilization using Calcite and steel slag in Korea. Since the soil stabilization only temporarily immobilizes the contaminants to soil matrix, the potential risk of re-leaching heavy metal still exists. Therefore the follow-up management of stabilized soils and the corresponding evaluation methods are required to avoid the consequent contamination from the stabilized soils. In this study, microbial community analysis using pyrosequencing was performed for assessing the potential leaching of the stabilized soils. As a result of rarefaction curve and Chao1 and Shannon indices, the stabilized soil has shown lower richness and diversity as compared to non-contaminated negative control. At the phyla level, as the degree of contamination increases, most of phyla decreased with only exception of increased proteobacteria. Among proteobacteria, gamma-proteobacteria increased against the heavy metal contamination. At the species level, Methylobacter tundripaludum of gamma-proteobacteria showed the highest relative portion of microbial community, indicating that methanotrophs may play an important role in either solubilization or immobilization of heavy metals in stabilized soils.

  15. Characterization of chlorinated and chloraminated drinking water microbial communities in a distribution system simulator using pyrosequencing data analysis

    EPA Science Inventory

    The molecular analysis of drinking water microbial communities has focused primarily on 16S rRNA gene sequence analysis. Since this approach provides limited information on function potential of microbial communities, analysis of whole-metagenome pyrosequencing data was used to...

  16. Microbial community dynamics alleviate stoichiometric constraints during litter decay.

    PubMed

    Kaiser, Christina; Franklin, Oskar; Dieckmann, Ulf; Richter, Andreas

    2014-06-01

    Under the current paradigm, organic matter decomposition and nutrient cycling rates are a function of the imbalance between substrate and microbial biomass stoichiometry. Challenging this view, we demonstrate that in an individual-based model, microbial community dynamics alter relative C and N limitation during litter decomposition, leading to a system behaviour not predictable from stoichiometric theory alone. Rather, the dynamics of interacting functional groups lead to an adaptation at the community level, which accelerates nitrogen recycling in litter with high initial C : N ratios and thus alleviates microbial N limitation. This mechanism allows microbial decomposers to overcome large imbalances between resource and biomass stoichiometry without the need to decrease carbon use efficiency (CUE), which is in contrast to predictions of traditional stoichiometric mass balance equations. We conclude that identifying and implementing microbial community-driven mechanisms in biogeochemical models are necessary for accurately predicting terrestrial C fluxes in response to changing environmental conditions.

  17. Microbial community dynamics alleviate stoichiometric constraints during litter decay

    PubMed Central

    Kaiser, Christina; Franklin, Oskar; Dieckmann, Ulf; Richter, Andreas

    2014-01-01

    Under the current paradigm, organic matter decomposition and nutrient cycling rates are a function of the imbalance between substrate and microbial biomass stoichiometry. Challenging this view, we demonstrate that in an individual-based model, microbial community dynamics alter relative C and N limitation during litter decomposition, leading to a system behaviour not predictable from stoichiometric theory alone. Rather, the dynamics of interacting functional groups lead to an adaptation at the community level, which accelerates nitrogen recycling in litter with high initial C : N ratios and thus alleviates microbial N limitation. This mechanism allows microbial decomposers to overcome large imbalances between resource and biomass stoichiometry without the need to decrease carbon use efficiency (CUE), which is in contrast to predictions of traditional stoichiometric mass balance equations. We conclude that identifying and implementing microbial community-driven mechanisms in biogeochemical models are necessary for accurately predicting terrestrial C fluxes in response to changing environmental conditions. PMID:24628731

  18. Cultivation and quantitative proteomic analyses of acidophilic microbial communities

    SciTech Connect

    Belnap, Christopher P.; Pan, Chongle; Verberkmoes, Nathan C; Power, Mary E.; Samatova, Nagiza F; Carver, Rudolf L.; Hettich, Robert {Bob} L; Banfield, Jillian F.

    2010-01-01

    Acid mine drainage (AMD), an extreme environment characterized by low pH and high metal concentrations, can support dense acidophilic microbial biofilm communities that rely on chemoautotrophic production based on iron oxidation. Field determined production rates indicate that, despite the extreme conditions, these communities are sufficiently well adapted to their habitats to achieve primary production rates comparable to those of microbial communities occurring in some non-extreme environments. To enable laboratory studies of growth, production and ecology of AMD microbial communities, a culturing system was designed to reproduce natural biofilms, including organisms recalcitrant to cultivation. A comprehensive metabolic labeling-based quantitative proteomic analysis was used to verify that natural and laboratory communities were comparable at the functional level. Results confirmed that the composition and core metabolic activities of laboratory-grown communities were similar to a natural community, including the presence of active, low abundance bacteria and archaea that have not yet been isolated. However, laboratory growth rates were slow compared with natural communities, and this correlated with increased abundance of stress response proteins for the dominant bacteria in laboratory communities. Modification of cultivation conditions reduced the abundance of stress response proteins and increased laboratory community growth rates. The research presented here represents the first description of the application of a metabolic labeling-based quantitative proteomic analysis at the community level and resulted in a model microbial community system ideal for testing physiological and ecological hypotheses.

  19. Microbial communities involved in electricity generation from sulfide oxidation in a microbial fuel cell.

    PubMed

    Sun, Min; Tong, Zhong-Hua; Sheng, Guo-Ping; Chen, Yong-Zhen; Zhang, Feng; Mu, Zhe-Xuan; Wang, Hua-Lin; Zeng, Raymond J; Liu, Xian-Wei; Yu, Han-Qing; Wei, Li; Ma, Fang

    2010-10-15

    Simultaneous electricity generation and sulfide removal can be achieved in a microbial fuel cell (MFC). In electricity harvesting from sulfide oxidation in such an MFC, various microbial communities are involved. It is essential to elucidate the microbial communities and their roles in the sulfide conversion and electricity generation. In this work, an MFC was constructed to enrich a microbial consortium, which could harvest electricity from sulfide oxidation. Electrochemical analysis demonstrated that microbial catalysis was involved in electricity output in the sulfide-fed MFC. The anode-attached and planktonic communities could perform catalysis independently, and synergistic interactions occurred when the two communities worked together. A 16S rRNA clone library analysis was employed to characterize the microbial communities in the MFC. The anode-attached and planktonic communities shared similar richness and diversity, while the LIBSHUFF analysis revealed that the two community structures were significantly different. The exoelectrogenic, sulfur-oxidizing and sulfate-reducing bacteria were found in the MFC anodic chamber. The discovery of these bacteria was consistent with the community characteristics for electricity generation from sulfide oxidation. The exoelectrogenic bacteria were found both on the anode and in the solution. The sulfur-oxidizing bacteria were present in greater abundance on the anode than in the solution, while the sulfate-reducing bacteria preferably lived in the solution.

  20. Integrating ecological and engineering concepts of resilience in microbial communities

    DOE PAGES

    Song, Hyun -Seob; Renslow, Ryan S.; Fredrickson, Jim K.; ...

    2015-12-01

    We note that many definitions of resilience have been proffered for natural and engineered ecosystems, but a conceptual consensus on resilience in microbial communities is still lacking. Here, we argue that the disconnect largely results from the wide variance in microbial community complexity, which range from simple synthetic consortia to complex natural communities, and divergence between the typical practical outcomes emphasized by ecologists and engineers. Viewing microbial communities as elasto-plastic systems, we argue that this gap between the engineering and ecological definitions of resilience stems from their respective emphases on elastic and plastic deformation, respectively. We propose that the twomore » concepts may be fundamentally united around the resilience of function rather than state in microbial communities and the regularity in the relationship between environmental variation and a community’s functional response. Furthermore, we posit that functional resilience is an intrinsic property of microbial communities, suggesting that state changes in response to environmental variation may be a key mechanism driving resilience in microbial communities.« less

  1. Integrating ecological and engineering concepts of resilience in microbial communities

    SciTech Connect

    Song, Hyun -Seob; Renslow, Ryan S.; Fredrickson, Jim K.; Lindemann, Stephen R.

    2015-12-01

    We note that many definitions of resilience have been proffered for natural and engineered ecosystems, but a conceptual consensus on resilience in microbial communities is still lacking. Here, we argue that the disconnect largely results from the wide variance in microbial community complexity, which range from simple synthetic consortia to complex natural communities, and divergence between the typical practical outcomes emphasized by ecologists and engineers. Viewing microbial communities as elasto-plastic systems, we argue that this gap between the engineering and ecological definitions of resilience stems from their respective emphases on elastic and plastic deformation, respectively. We propose that the two concepts may be fundamentally united around the resilience of function rather than state in microbial communities and the regularity in the relationship between environmental variation and a community’s functional response. Furthermore, we posit that functional resilience is an intrinsic property of microbial communities, suggesting that state changes in response to environmental variation may be a key mechanism driving resilience in microbial communities.

  2. Characterization and Adaptation of Anaerobic Sludge Microbial Communities Exposed to Tetrabromobisphenol A

    PubMed Central

    Lefevre, Emilie; Cooper, Ellen; Stapleton, Heather M.

    2016-01-01

    The increasing occurrence of tetrabromobisphenol A (TBBPA) in the environment is raising questions about its potential ecological and human health impacts. TBBPA is microbially transformed under anaerobic conditions to bisphenol A (BPA). However, little is known about which taxa degrade TBBPA and the adaptation of microbial communities exposed to TBBPA. The objectives of this study were to characterize the effect of TBBPA on microbial community structure during the start-up phase of a bench-scale anaerobic sludge reactor, and identify taxa that may be associated with TBBPA degradation. TBBPA degradation was monitored using LC/MS-MS, and the microbial community was characterized using Ion Torrent sequencing and qPCR. TBBPA was nearly completely transformed to BPA via reductive debromination in 55 days. Anaerobic reactor performance was not negatively affected by the presence of TBBPA and the bulk of the microbial community did not experience significant shifts. Several taxa showed a positive response to TBBPA, suggesting they may be associated with TBBPA degradation. Some of these taxa had been previously identified as dehalogenating bacteria including Dehalococcoides, Desulfovibrio, Propionibacterium, and Methylosinus species, but most had not previously been identified as having dehalogenating capacities. This study is the first to provide in-depth information on the microbial dynamics of anaerobic microbial communities exposed to TBBPA. PMID:27463972

  3. Perspective for Aquaponic Systems: “Omic” Technologies for Microbial Community Analysis

    PubMed Central

    Munguia-Fragozo, Perla; Alatorre-Jacome, Oscar; Rico-Garcia, Enrique; Torres-Pacheco, Irineo; Cruz-Hernandez, Andres; Ocampo-Velazquez, Rosalia V.; Garcia-Trejo, Juan F.; Guevara-Gonzalez, Ramon G.

    2015-01-01

    Aquaponics is the combined production of aquaculture and hydroponics, connected by a water recirculation system. In this productive system, the microbial community is responsible for carrying out the nutrient dynamics between the components. The nutrimental transformations mainly consist in the transformation of chemical species from toxic compounds into available nutrients. In this particular field, the microbial research, the “Omic” technologies will allow a broader scope of studies about a current microbial profile inside aquaponics community, even in those species that currently are unculturable. This approach can also be useful to understand complex interactions of living components in the system. Until now, the analog studies were made to set up the microbial characterization on recirculation aquaculture systems (RAS). However, microbial community composition of aquaponics is still unknown. “Omic” technologies like metagenomic can help to reveal taxonomic diversity. The perspectives are also to begin the first attempts to sketch the functional diversity inside aquaponic systems and its ecological relationships. The knowledge of the emergent properties inside the microbial community, as well as the understanding of the biosynthesis pathways, can derive in future biotechnological applications. Thus, the aim of this review is to show potential applications of current “Omic” tools to characterize the microbial community in aquaponic systems. PMID:26509157

  4. Differential microbial communities in hot spring mats from Western Thailand.

    PubMed

    Portillo, M C; Sririn, V; Kanoksilapatham, W; Gonzalez, J M

    2009-03-01

    The microbial communities of freshwater hot spring mats from Boekleung (Western Thailand) were studied. Temperatures ranged from over 50 up to 57 degrees C. Green-, red-, and yellow colored mat layers were analyzed. In order to detect the major components of the microbial communities constituting the mat as well as the microorganisms showing significant metabolic activity, samples were analyzed using DNA- and RNA-based molecular techniques, respectively. Microbial community fingerprints, performed by denaturing gradient gel electrophoresis (DGGE), revealed clear differences among mat layers. Thermophilic phototrophic microorganisms, Cyanobacteria and Chloroflexi, constituted the major groups in these communities (on average 65 and 51% from DNA and RNA analyses, respectively). Other bacteria detected in the mat were Bacteroidetes, members of the Candidate Division OP10, Actinobacteria, and Planctomycetes. Differently colored mat layers showed characteristic bacterial communities and the major components of the metabolically active fraction of these communities have been identified.

  5. A hydrogen-based subsurface microbial community dominated by methanogens

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chapelle, Francis H.; O'Neill, Kathleen; Bradley, Paul M.; Methé, Barbara A.; Ciufo, Stacy A.; Knobel, LeRoy L.; Lovley, Derek R.

    2002-01-01

    The search for extraterrestrial life may be facilitated if ecosystems can be found on Earth that exist under conditions analogous to those present on other planets or moons. It has been proposed, on the basis of geochemical and thermodynamic considerations, that geologically derived hydrogen might support subsurface microbial communities on Mars and Europa in which methanogens form the base of the ecosystem. Here we describe a unique subsurface microbial community in which hydrogen-consuming, methane-producing Archaea far outnumber the Bacteria. More than 90% of the 16S ribosomal DNA sequences recovered from hydrothermal waters circulating through deeply buried igneous rocks in Idaho are related to hydrogen-using methanogenic microorganisms. Geochemical characterization indicates that geothermal hydrogen, not organic carbon, is the primary energy source for this methanogen-dominated microbial community. These results demonstrate that hydrogen-based methanogenic communities do occur in Earth's subsurface, providing an analogue for possible subsurface microbial ecosystems on other planets.

  6. A hydrogen-based subsurface microbial community dominated by methanogens.

    PubMed

    Chapelle, Francis H; O'Neill, Kathleen; Bradley, Paul M; Methé, Barbara A; Ciufo, Stacy A; Knobel, LeRoy L; Lovley, Derek R

    2002-01-17

    The search for extraterrestrial life may be facilitated if ecosystems can be found on Earth that exist under conditions analogous to those present on other planets or moons. It has been proposed, on the basis of geochemical and thermodynamic considerations, that geologically derived hydrogen might support subsurface microbial communities on Mars and Europa in which methanogens form the base of the ecosystem. Here we describe a unique subsurface microbial community in which hydrogen-consuming, methane-producing Archaea far outnumber the Bacteria. More than 90% of the 16S ribosomal DNA sequences recovered from hydrothermal waters circulating through deeply buried igneous rocks in Idaho are related to hydrogen-using methanogenic microorganisms. Geochemical characterization indicates that geothermal hydrogen, not organic carbon, is the primary energy source for this methanogen-dominated microbial community. These results demonstrate that hydrogen-based methanogenic communities do occur in Earth's subsurface, providing an analogue for possible subsurface microbial ecosystems on other planets.

  7. A hydrogen-based subsurface microbial community dominated by methanogens

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Chapelle, F.H.; O'Neil, Kyle; Bradley, P.M.; Methe, B.A.; Ciufo, S.A.; Knobel, L.L.; Lovley, D.R.

    2002-01-01

    The search for extraterrestrial life may be facilitated if ecosystems can be found on Earth that exist under conditions analogous to those present on other planets or moons. It has been proposed, on the basis of geochemical and thermodynamic considerations, that geologically derived hydrogen might support subsurface microbial communities on Mars and Europa in which methanogens form the base of the ecosystem1-5. Here we describe a unique subsurface microbial community in which hydrogen-consuming, methane-producing Archaea far outnumber the Bacteria. More than 90% of the 16s ribosomal DNA sequences recovered from hydrothermal waters circulating through deeply buried igneous rocks in Idaho are related to hydrogen-using methanogenic microorganisms. Geochemical characterization indicates that geothermal hydrogen, not organic carbon, is the primary energy source for this methanogen-dominated microbial community. These results demonstrate that hydrogen-based methanogenic communities do occur in Earth's subsurface, providing an analogue for possible subsurface microbial ecosystems on other planets.

  8. Microbial communities respond to experimental warming, but site matters

    PubMed Central

    Sanders, Nathan J.; Dunn, Robert R.; Classen, Aimée T.

    2014-01-01

    Because microorganisms are sensitive to temperature, ongoing global warming is predicted to influence microbial community structure and function. We used large-scale warming experiments established at two sites near the northern and southern boundaries of US eastern deciduous forests to explore how microbial communities and their function respond to warming at sites with differing climatic regimes. Soil microbial community structure and function responded to warming at the southern but not the northern site. However, changes in microbial community structure and function at the southern site did not result in changes in cellulose decomposition rates. While most global change models rest on the assumption that taxa will respond similarly to warming across sites and their ranges, these results suggest that the responses of microorganisms to warming may be mediated by differences across the geographic boundaries of ecosystems. PMID:24795850

  9. Microbial Community Analysis of a Single Chamber Microbial Fuel Cell Using Potato Wastewater

    SciTech Connect

    Zhen Li; Rishika Haynes; Eugene Sato; Malcolm Shields; Yoshiko Fujita; Chikashi Sato

    2014-04-01

    Microbial fuel cells (MFCs) convert chemical energy to electrical energy via bioelectrochemical reactions mediated by microorganisms. We investigated the diversity of the microbial community in an air cathode single chamber MFC that utilized potato-process wastewater as substrate. Terminal Restriction Fragment Length Polymorphism (T-RFLP) results indicated that the bacterial communities on the anode, cathode, control electrode, and MFC bulk fluid were similar, but differed dramatically from that of the anaerobic domestic sludge and potato wastewater inoculum. The 16S rDNA sequencing results showed that microbial species detected on the anode were predominantly within the phyla of Proteobacteria, Firmicutes, and Bacteroidetes. Fluorescent microscopy results indicated that there was a clear enhancement of biofilm formation on the anode. Results of this study could help improve understanding of the complexity of microbial communities and optimize the microbial composition for generating electricity by MFCs that utilize potato wastewater.

  10. Microbial community analysis of a single chamber microbial fuel cell using potato wastewater.

    PubMed

    Li, Zhen; Haynes, Rishika; Sato, Eugene; Shields, Malcolm S; Fujita, Yoshiko; Sato, Chikashi

    2014-04-01

    Microbial fuel cells (MFCs) convert chemical energy to electrical energy via bio-electrochemical reactions mediated by microorganisms. This study investigated the diversity of the microbial community in an air cathode single chamber MFC that used potato-process wastewater as substrate. Terminal restriction fragment length polymorphism results indicated that the bacterial communities on the anode, cathode, control electrode, and MFC bulk fluid were similar, but differed dramatically from that of the anaerobic domestic sludge and potato wastewater inoculum. The 16S ribosomal DNA sequencing results showed that microbial species detected on the anode were predominantly within the phyla of Proteobacteria, Firmicutes, and Bacteroidetes. Fluorescent microscopy results indicated that there was a clear enhancement of biofilm formation on the anode. Results of this study could help improve understanding of the complexity of microbial communities and optimize the microbial composition for generating electricity by MFCs that use potato wastewater.

  11. Microbial community transitions across the deep sediment-basement interface

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Labonté, J.; Lever, M. A.; Orcutt, B.

    2015-12-01

    Previous studies of microbial abundance and geochemistry in deep marine sediments indicate a stimulation of microbial activity near the sediment-basement interface; yet, the extent to which microbial communities in bottom sediments and underlying crustal habitats interact is unclear. We conducted tag pyrosequencing on DNA extracted from a spectrum of deep sediment-basement samples to try to identify patterns in microbial community shifts across sediment-basement interfaces, focusing on samples from the subsurface of the Juan de Fuca Ridge flank (IODP Expedition 327). Our results demonstrate that sediment and the basaltic crust harbor microbial communities that are phylogenetically connected, but the eveness is characteristic of the environment. We will discuss the microbial community transitions that occur horizontally along fluid flow pathways and vertically across the sediment basement interface, as well as the possible implications regarding the controls of microbial community composition along deep sediment-basement interfaces in hydrothermal systems. We will also highlight efforts to overcome sample contamination in crustal subsurface samples.

  12. Effect of warming and drought on grassland microbial communities.

    PubMed

    Sheik, Cody S; Beasley, William Howard; Elshahed, Mostafa S; Zhou, Xuhui; Luo, Yiqi; Krumholz, Lee R

    2011-10-01

    The soil microbiome is responsible for mediating key ecological processes; however, little is known about its sensitivity to climate change. Observed increases in global temperatures and alteration to rainfall patterns, due to anthropogenic release of greenhouse gases, will likely have a strong influence on soil microbial communities and ultimately the ecosystem services they provide. Therefore, it is vital to understand how soil microbial communities will respond to future climate change scenarios. To this end, we surveyed the abundance, diversity and structure of microbial communities over a 2-year period from a long-term in situ warming experiment that experienced a moderate natural drought. We found the warming treatment and soil water budgets strongly influence bacterial population size and diversity. In normal precipitation years, the warming treatment significantly increased microbial population size 40-150% but decreased diversity and significantly changed the composition of the community when compared with the unwarmed controls. However during drought conditions, the warming treatment significantly reduced soil moisture thereby creating unfavorable growth conditions that led to a 50-80% reduction in the microbial population size when compared with the control. Warmed plots also saw an increase in species richness, diversity and evenness; however, community composition was unaffected suggesting that few phylotypes may be active under these stressful conditions. Our results indicate that under warmed conditions, ecosystem water budget regulates the abundance and diversity of microbial populations and that rainfall timing is critical at the onset of drought for sustaining microbial populations.

  13. Understanding Microbial Communities: Function, Structure and Dynamics

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2015-02-11

    Park, NC 27709-2211 Conference grant, microbial ecology , biomathematics REPORT DOCUMENTATION PAGE 11. SPONSOR/MONITOR’S REPORT NUMBER(S) 10...Wilmes. Challenges in Microbial Ecology : building predictive understanding, ISME Journal (06 2015) TOTAL: 1 Books Number of Manuscripts: Patents...a one day ’Open for business’ day which was attended by both industrial representatives interested in microbial ecology and academics. Final progress

  14. Changes in microbial community structure in the wake of Hurricanes Katrina and Rita

    PubMed Central

    Amaral-Zettler, Linda A.; Rocca, Jennifer D.; LaMontagne, Michael G.; Dennett, Mark R.; Gast, Rebecca J.

    2009-01-01

    Hurricanes have the potential to alter the structures of coastal ecosystems and generate pathogen-laden floodwaters that threaten public health. To examine the impact of hurricanes on urban systems, we compared microbial community structures in samples collected after Hurricane Katrina and before and after Hurricane Rita. We extracted environmental DNA and sequenced small-subunit ribosomal RNA (SSU rRNA) gene clone libraries to survey microbial communities in floodwater, water and sediment samples collected from Lake Charles, Lake Pontchartrain, the 17th Street and Industrial Canals in New Orleans and raw sewage. Correspondence Analysis showed that microbial communities associated with sediments formed one cluster while communities associated with lake and Industrial Canal water formed a second. Communities associated with water from the 17th Street Canal and floodwaters collected in New Orleans showed similarity to communities in raw sewage and contained a number of sequences associated with possible pathogenic microbes. This suggests that a distinct microbial community developed in floodwaters following Hurricane Katrina and that microbial community structures as a whole might be sensitive indicators of ecosystem health and serve as “sentinels” of water quality in the environment. PMID:19174873

  15. Changes in microbial community structure in the wake of Hurricanes Katrina and Rita.

    PubMed

    Amaral-Zettler, Linda A; Rocca, Jennifer D; Lamontagne, Michael G; Dennett, Mark R; Gast, Rebecca J

    2008-12-15

    Hurricanes have the potential to alter the structures of coastal ecosystems and generate pathogen-laden floodwaters thatthreaten public health. To examine the impact of hurricanes on urban systems, we compared microbial community structures in samples collected after Hurricane Katrina and before and after Hurricane Rita. We extracted environmental DNA and sequenced small-subunit rRNA (SSU rRNA) gene clone libraries to survey microbial communities in floodwater, water, and sediment samples collected from Lake Charles, Lake Pontchartrain, the 17th Street and Industrial Canals in New Orleans, and raw sewage. Correspondence analysis showed that microbial communities associated with sediments formed one cluster while communities associated with lake and Industrial Canal water formed a second. Communities associated with water from the 17th Street Canal and floodwaters collected in New Orleans showed similarity to communities in raw sewage and contained a number of sequences associated with possible pathogenic microbes. This suggests that a distinct microbial community developed in floodwaters following Hurricane Katrina and that microbial community structures as a whole might be sensitive indicators of ecosystem health and serve as "sentinels" of water quality in the environment.

  16. Soil microbial communities and elk foraging intensity: implications for soil biogeochemical cycling in the sagebrush steppe.

    PubMed

    Cline, Lauren C; Zak, Donald R; Upchurch, Rima A; Freedman, Zachary B; Peschel, Anna R

    2017-02-01

    Foraging intensity of large herbivores may exert an indirect top-down ecological force on soil microbial communities via changes in plant litter inputs. We investigated the responses of the soil microbial community to elk (Cervus elaphus) winter range occupancy across a long-term foraging exclusion experiment in the sagebrush steppe of the North American Rocky Mountains, combining phylogenetic analysis of fungi and bacteria with shotgun metagenomics and extracellular enzyme assays. Winter foraging intensity was associated with reduced bacterial richness and increasingly distinct bacterial communities. Although fungal communities did not respond linearly to foraging intensity, a greater β-diversity response to winter foraging exclusion was observed. Furthermore, winter foraging exclusion increased soil cellulolytic and hemicellulolytic enzyme potential and higher foraging intensity reduced chitinolytic gene abundance. Thus, future changes in winter range occupancy may shape biogeochemical processes via shifts in microbial communities and subsequent changes to their physiological capacities to cycle soil C and N.

  17. Potential Activity, Size, and Structure of Sulfate-Reducing Microbial Communities in an Exposed, Grazed and a Sheltered, Non-Grazed Mangrove Stand at the Red Sea Coast

    PubMed Central

    Balk, Melike; Keuskamp, Joost A.; Laanbroek, Hendrikus J.

    2015-01-01

    After oxygen, sulfate is the most important oxidant for the oxidation of organic matter in mangrove forest soils. As sulfate reducers are poor competitors for common electron donors, their relative success depends mostly on the surplus of carbon that is left by aerobic organisms due to oxygen depletion. We therefore hypothesized that sulfate-cycling in mangrove soils is influenced by the size of net primary production, and hence negatively affected by mangrove degradation and exploitation, as well as by carbon-exporting waves. To test this, we compared quantitative and qualitative traits of sulfate-reducing communities in two Saudi-Arabian mangrove stands near Jeddah, where co-occurring differences in camel-grazing pressure and tidal exposure led to a markedly different stand height and hence primary production. Potential sulfate reduction rates measured in anoxic flow-through reactors in the absence and presence of additional carbon sources were significantly higher in the samples from the non-grazed site. Near the surface (0–2 cm depth), numbers of dsrB gene copies and culturable cells also tended to be higher in the non-grazed sites, while these differences were not detected in the sub-surface (4–6 cm depth). It was concluded that sulfate-reducing microbes at the surface were indeed repressed at the low-productive site as could be expected from our hypothesis. At both sites, sulfate reduction rates as well as numbers of the dsrB gene copies and viable cells increased with depth suggesting repression of sulfate reduction near the surface in both irrespective of production level. Additionally, sequence analysis of DNA bands obtained from DGGE gels based on the dsrB gene, showed a clear difference in dominance of sulfate-reducing genera belonging to the Deltaproteobacteria and the Firmicutes between sampling sites and depths. PMID:26733999

  18. The Influence of Ecological Isolation on the Structural and Functional Stability of Complex Microbial Communities

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Franklin, R. B.; Garland, J. L.; Mills, A. L.

    2005-01-01

    To help understand how the behavior of microorganisms and microbial communities in insular space habitats may differ from the behavior of these groups on Earth, long-term incubations (100+ days) were conducting using wastewater bioreactors (batch fed) designed to mimic "closed" and "open" ecological systems. The issue of immigration was considered, and the goal of the research was to determine whether the stability of microbial communities in space is reduced due to their prolonged isolation. Bioreactors were established by inoculating flasks of sterile synthetic wastewater with the microbial community obtained from a local treatment facility; each day, one-third of the medium in the flask was replaced with an equal volume of sterile artificial wastewater. Flasks were divided into two treatments: "closed" and "open" to recruitment of additional microorganisms. "Closed" flasks were maintained as described above, while the medium used to feed the "open" flasks was supplemented daily with a small amount of raw sewage (which provided a continuous source of new potential community members). Significant differences in microbial community structure and function developed in the two sets of communities, and the results suggest that the open community was more stable and better able to adjust to changing environmental conditions. Each community's resistance to environmental (temperature fluctuations) and biological stresses (starvation and invasion by an opportunistic pathogen Pseudomonas aeruginosa) was monitored. Experiments were also conducted to determine whether the effect of isolation changes depending on the microbial communities' initial diversity or composition; communities with a low(er) initial diversity were less stable. Overall, the results indicate that isolation will be an important factor influencing the activity of microbial communities on board spacecraft. A possible way of mitigating these effects would be to include communities with high initial

  19. Energy landscapes shape microbial communities in hydrothermal systems on the Arctic Mid-Ocean Ridge.

    PubMed

    Dahle, Håkon; Økland, Ingeborg; Thorseth, Ingunn H; Pederesen, Rolf B; Steen, Ida H

    2015-07-01

    Methods developed in geochemical modelling combined with recent advances in molecular microbial ecology provide new opportunities to explore how microbial communities are shaped by their chemical surroundings. Here, we present a framework for analyses of how chemical energy availability shape chemotrophic microbial communities in hydrothermal systems through an investigation of two geochemically different basalt-hosted hydrothermal systems on the Arctic Mid-Ocean Ridge: the Soria Moria Vent field (SMVF) and the Loki's Castle Vent Field (LCVF). Chemical energy landscapes were evaluated through modelling of the Gibbs energy from selected redox reactions under different mixing ratios between seawater and hydrothermal fluids. Our models indicate that the sediment-influenced LCVF has a much higher potential for both anaerobic and aerobic methane oxidation, as well as aerobic ammonium and hydrogen oxidation, than the SMVF. The modelled energy landscapes were used to develop microbial community composition models, which were compared with community compositions in environmental samples inside or on the exterior of hydrothermal chimneys, as assessed by pyrosequencing of partial 16S rRNA genes. We show that modelled microbial communities based solely on thermodynamic considerations can have a high predictive power and provide a framework for analyses of the link between energy availability and microbial community composition.

  20. Energy landscapes shape microbial communities in hydrothermal systems on the Arctic Mid-Ocean Ridge

    PubMed Central

    Dahle, Håkon; Økland, Ingeborg; Thorseth, Ingunn H; Pederesen, Rolf B; Steen, Ida H

    2015-01-01

    Methods developed in geochemical modelling combined with recent advances in molecular microbial ecology provide new opportunities to explore how microbial communities are shaped by their chemical surroundings. Here, we present a framework for analyses of how chemical energy availability shape chemotrophic microbial communities in hydrothermal systems through an investigation of two geochemically different basalt-hosted hydrothermal systems on the Arctic Mid-Ocean Ridge: the Soria Moria Vent field (SMVF) and the Loki's Castle Vent Field (LCVF). Chemical energy landscapes were evaluated through modelling of the Gibbs energy from selected redox reactions under different mixing ratios between seawater and hydrothermal fluids. Our models indicate that the sediment-influenced LCVF has a much higher potential for both anaerobic and aerobic methane oxidation, as well as aerobic ammonium and hydrogen oxidation, than the SMVF. The modelled energy landscapes were used to develop microbial community composition models, which were compared with community compositions in environmental samples inside or on the exterior of hydrothermal chimneys, as assessed by pyrosequencing of partial 16S rRNA genes. We show that modelled microbial communities based solely on thermodynamic considerations can have a high predictive power and provide a framework for analyses of the link between energy availability and microbial community composition. PMID:25575309

  1. Soil microbial communities following bush removal in a Namibian savanna

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Buyer, Jeffrey S.; Schmidt-Küntzel, Anne; Nghikembua, Matti; Maul, Jude E.; Marker, Laurie

    2016-03-01

    Savanna ecosystems are subject to desertification and bush encroachment, which reduce the carrying capacity for wildlife and livestock. Bush thinning is a management approach that can, at least temporarily, restore grasslands and raise the grazing value of the land. In this study we examined the soil microbial communities under bush and grass in Namibia. We analyzed the soil through a chronosequence where bush was thinned at 9, 5, or 3 years before sampling. Soil microbial biomass, the biomass of specific taxonomic groups, and overall microbial community structure was determined by phospholipid fatty acid analysis, while the community structure of Bacteria, Archaea, and fungi was determined by multiplex terminal restriction fragment length polymorphism analysis. Soil under bush had higher pH, C, N, and microbial biomass than under grass, and the microbial community structure was also altered under bush compared to grass. A major disturbance to the ecosystem, bush thinning, resulted in an altered microbial community structure compared to control plots, but the magnitude of this perturbation gradually declined with time. Community structure was primarily driven by pH, C, and N, while vegetation type, bush thinning, and time since bush thinning were of secondary importance.

  2. Soil microbial communities following bush removal in a Namibian savanna

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Buyer, J. S.; Schmidt-Küntzel, A.; Nghikembua, M.; Maul, J. E.; Marker, L.

    2015-12-01

    Savanna ecosystems are subject to desertification and bush encroachment, which reduce the carrying capacity for wildlife and livestock. Bush thinning is a management approach that can, at least temporarily, restore grasslands and raise the grazing value of the land. In this study we examined the soil microbial communities under bush and grass in Namibia. We analyzed the soil through a chronosequence where bush was thinned at 9, 5, or 3 years before sampling. Soil microbial biomass, the biomass of specific taxonomic groups, and overall microbial community structure was determined by phospholipid fatty acid analysis, while the community structure of Bacteria, Archaea, and fungi was determined by multiplex terminal restriction fragment length polymorphism analysis. Soil under bush had higher pH, C, N, and microbial biomass than under grass, and the microbial community structure was also altered under bush compared to grass. A major disturbance to the ecosystem, bush thinning, resulted in an altered microbial community structure compared to control plots, but the magnitude of this perturbation gradually declined with time. Community structure was primarily driven by pH, C, and N, while vegetation type, bush thinning, and time since bush thinning were of secondary importance.

  3. Analysis of oxygen reduction and microbial community of air-diffusion biocathode in microbial fuel cells.

    PubMed

    Wang, Zejie; Zheng, Yue; Xiao, Yong; Wu, Song; Wu, Yicheng; Yang, Zhaohui; Zhao, Feng

    2013-09-01

    Microbes play irreplaceable role in oxygen reduction reaction of biocathode in microbial fuel cells (MFCs). In this study, air-diffusion biocathode MFCs were set up for accelerating oxygen reduction and microbial community analysis. Linear sweep voltammetry and Tafel curve confirmed the function of cathode biofilm to catalyze oxygen reduction. Microbial community analysis revealed higher diversity and richness of community in plankton than in biofilm. Proteobacteria was the shared predominant phylum in both biofilm and plankton (39.9% and 49.8%) followed by Planctomycetes (29.9%) and Bacteroidetes (13.3%) in biofilm, while Bacteroidetes (28.2%) in plankton. Minor fraction (534, 16.4%) of the total operational taxonomic units (3252) was overlapped demonstrating the disproportionation of bacterial distribution in biofilm and plankton. Pseudomonadales, Rhizobiales and Sphingobacteriales were exoelectrogenic orders in the present study. The research obtained deep insight of microbial community and provided more comprehensive information on uncultured rare bacteria.

  4. Exposure to dairy manure leads to greater antibiotic resistance and increased mass-specific respiration in soil microbial communities.

    PubMed

    Wepking, Carl; Avera, Bethany; Badgley, Brian; Barrett, John E; Franklin, Josh; Knowlton, Katharine F; Ray, Partha P; Smitherman, Crystal; Strickland, Michael S

    2017-03-29

    Intensifying livestock production to meet the demands of a growing global population coincides with increases in both the administration of veterinary antibiotics and manure inputs to soils. These trends have the potential to increase antibiotic resistance in soil microbial communities. The effect of maintaining increased antibiotic resistance on soil microbial communities and the ecosystem processes they regulate is unknown. We compare soil microbial communities from paired reference and dairy manure-exposed sites across the USA. Given that manure exposure has been shown to elicit increased antibiotic resistance in soil microbial communities, we expect that manure-exposed sites will exhibit (i) compositionally different soil microbial communities, with shifts toward taxa known to exhibit resistance; (ii) greater abundance of antibiotic resistance genes; and (iii) corresponding maintenance of antibiotic resistance would lead to decreased microbial efficiency. We found that bacterial and fungal communities differed between reference and manure-exposed sites. Additionally, the β-lactam resistance gene ampC was 5.2-fold greater under manure exposure, potentially due to the use of cephalosporin antibiotics in dairy herds. Finally, ampC abundance was positively correlated with indicators of microbial stress, and microbial mass-specific respiration, which increased 2.1-fold under manure exposure. These findings demonstrate that the maintenance of antibiotic resistance associated with manure inputs alters soil microbial communities and ecosystem function.

  5. Potential microbial contamination during sampling of permafrost soil assessed by tracers

    PubMed Central

    Bang-Andreasen, Toke; Schostag, Morten; Priemé, Anders; Elberling, Bo; Jacobsen, Carsten S.

    2017-01-01

    Drilling and handling of permanently frozen soil cores without microbial contamination is of concern because contamination e.g. from the active layer above may lead to incorrect interpretation of results in experiments investigating potential and actual microbial activity in these low microbial biomass environments. Here, we present an example of how microbial contamination from active layer soil affected analysis of the potentially active microbial community in permafrost soil. We also present the development and use of two tracers: (1) fluorescent plastic microspheres and (2) Pseudomonas putida genetically tagged with Green Fluorescent Protein production to mimic potential microbial contamination of two permafrost cores. A protocol with special emphasis on avoiding microbial contamination was developed and employed to examine how far microbial contamination can penetrate into permafrost cores. The quantity of tracer elements decreased with depth into the permafrost cores, but the tracers were detected as far as 17 mm from the surface of the cores. The results emphasize that caution should be taken to avoid microbial contamination of permafrost cores and that the application of tracers represents a useful tool to assess penetration of potential microbial contamination into permafrost cores. PMID:28230151

  6. Potential microbial contamination during sampling of permafrost soil assessed by tracers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bang-Andreasen, Toke; Schostag, Morten; Priemé, Anders; Elberling, Bo; Jacobsen, Carsten S.

    2017-02-01

    Drilling and handling of permanently frozen soil cores without microbial contamination is of concern because contamination e.g. from the active layer above may lead to incorrect interpretation of results in experiments investigating potential and actual microbial activity in these low microbial biomass environments. Here, we present an example of how microbial contamination from active layer soil affected analysis of the potentially active microbial community in permafrost soil. We also present the development and use of two tracers: (1) fluorescent plastic microspheres and (2) Pseudomonas putida genetically tagged with Green Fluorescent Protein production to mimic potential microbial contamination of two permafrost cores. A protocol with special emphasis on avoiding microbial contamination was developed and employed to examine how far microbial contamination can penetrate into permafrost cores. The quantity of tracer elements decreased with depth into the permafrost cores, but the tracers were detected as far as 17 mm from the surface of the cores. The results emphasize that caution should be taken to avoid microbial contamination of permafrost cores and that the application of tracers represents a useful tool to assess penetration of potential microbial contamination into permafrost cores.

  7. Potential microbial contamination during sampling of permafrost soil assessed by tracers.

    PubMed

    Bang-Andreasen, Toke; Schostag, Morten; Priemé, Anders; Elberling, Bo; Jacobsen, Carsten S

    2017-02-23

    Drilling and handling of permanently frozen soil cores without microbial contamination is of concern because contamination e.g. from the active layer above may lead to incorrect interpretation of results in experiments investigating potential and actual microbial activity in these low microbial biomass environments. Here, we present an example of how microbial contamination from active layer soil affected analysis of the potentially active microbial community in permafrost soil. We also present the development and use of two tracers: (1) fluorescent plastic microspheres and (2) Pseudomonas putida genetically tagged with Green Fluorescent Protein production to mimic potential microbial contamination of two permafrost cores. A protocol with special emphasis on avoiding microbial contamination was developed and employed to examine how far microbial contamination can penetrate into permafrost cores. The quantity of tracer elements decreased with depth into the permafrost cores, but the tracers were detected as far as 17 mm from the surface of the cores. The results emphasize that caution should be taken to avoid microbial contamination of permafrost cores and that the application of tracers represents a useful tool to assess penetration of potential microbial contamination into permafrost cores.

  8. Microbial Community Succession During Lactate Amendment of Chromium Contaminated Groundwater Reveals a Predominance of Pelosinus spp.

    SciTech Connect

    Mosher, Jennifer J; Phelps, Tommy Joe; Drake, Meghan M; Campbell, James H; Moberly, James G; Schadt, Christopher Warren; Podar, Mircea; Brown, Steven D; Hazen, Terry; Arkin, Adam; Palumbo, Anthony Vito; Faybishenko, Boris A; Elias, Dwayne A

    2012-01-01

    Microbial community structure and metabolism in contaminated ecosystems are potentially controlled not only by the different populations within the community, but a myriad of dynamic physicochemical parameters as well. The goal of the current work was to determine the impact of organic acid enrichment, in this case lactate, on the succession of the native microbial community from a contaminated groundwater aquifer. Triplicate anaerobic, continuous-flow glass reactors were inoculated with Hanford 100-H groundwater and incubated for 95 days to obtain a stable, enriched community. The microbial community experienced a shift in the population dynamics over time to eventually form a community with far less diversity than the original. The final community was dominated by Pelosinus spp. and to a lesser degree, Acetobacterium spp. with small amounts of other bacteria and archaea including methanogens. The resultant diversity was far decreased from 63 genera within 12 phyla to 11 bacterial genera (from three phyla) and 2 archaeal genera (from one phylum). Isolation efforts were successful in attaining new species of Pelosinus and known members of Methanosarcina barkerii along with several sulfate- and Fe(III)- reducing consortia members. The continuous-flow reactors allowed for testing physiochemical factors with microbial community dynamics on a smaller, replicable, scale while also facilitating the isolation of several previously uncultured community members. These lab-scale simulations will presumably allow for a deeper understanding of the community metabolism with specific carbon amendments that can inform future in situ efforts.

  9. Similar Microbial Communities Found on Two Distant Seafloor Basalts.

    PubMed

    Singer, Esther; Chong, Lauren S; Heidelberg, John F; Edwards, Katrina J

    2015-01-01

    The oceanic crust forms two thirds of the Earth's surface and hosts a large phylogenetic and functional diversity of microorganisms. While advances have been made in the sedimentary realm, our understanding of the igneous rock portion as a microbial habitat has remained limited. We present the first comparative metagenomic microbial community analysis from ocean floor basalt environments at the Lō'ihi Seamount, Hawai'i, and the East Pacific Rise (EPR; 9°N). Phylogenetic analysis indicates the presence of a total of 43 bacterial and archaeal mono-phyletic groups, dominated by Alpha- and Gammaproteobacteria, as well as Thaumarchaeota. Functional gene analysis suggests that these Thaumarchaeota play an important role in ammonium oxidation on seafloor basalts. In addition to ammonium oxidation, the seafloor basalt habitat reveals a wide spectrum of other metabolic potentials, including CO2 fixation, denitrification, dissimilatory sulfate reduction, and sulfur oxidation. Basalt communities from Lō'ihi and the EPR show considerable metabolic and phylogenetic overlap down to the genus level despite geographic distance and slightly different seafloor basalt mineralogy.

  10. Similar Microbial Communities Found on Two Distant Seafloor Basalts

    PubMed Central

    Singer, Esther; Chong, Lauren S.; Heidelberg, John F.; Edwards, Katrina J.

    2015-01-01

    The oceanic crust forms two thirds of the Earth’s surface and hosts a large phylogenetic and functional diversity of microorganisms. While advances have been made in the sedimentary realm, our understanding of the igneous rock portion as a microbial habitat has remained limited. We present the first comparative metagenomic microbial community analysis from ocean floor basalt environments at the Lō’ihi Seamount, Hawai’i, and the East Pacific Rise (EPR; 9°N). Phylogenetic analysis indicates the presence of a total of 43 bacterial and archaeal mono-phyletic groups, dominated by Alpha- and Gammaproteobacteria, as well as Thaumarchaeota. Functional gene analysis suggests that these Thaumarchaeota play an important role in ammonium oxidation on seafloor basalts. In addition to ammonium oxidation, the seafloor basalt habitat reveals a wide spectrum of other metabolic potentials, including CO2 fixation, denitrification, dissimilatory sulfate reduction, and sulfur oxidation. Basalt communities from Lō’ihi and the EPR show considerable metabolic and phylogenetic overlap down to the genus level despite geographic distance and slightly different seafloor basalt mineralogy. PMID:26733957

  11. Effects of community versus single strain inoculants on the biocontrol of Salmonella and microbial community dynamics in alfalfa sprouts.

    PubMed

    Matos, Anabelle; Garland, Jay L

    2005-01-01

    Potential biological control inoculants, Pseudomonas fluorescens 2-79 and microbial communities derived from market sprouts or laboratory-grown alfalfa sprouts, were introduced into alfalfa seeds with and without a Salmonella inoculum. We examined their ability to inhibit the growth of this foodborne pathogen and assess the relative effects of the inoculants on the alfalfa microbial community structure and function. Alfalfa seeds contaminated with a Salmonella cocktail were soaked for 2 h in bacterial suspensions from each inoculant tested. Inoculated alfalfa seeds were grown for 7 days and sampled during days 1, 3, and 7. At each sampling, alfalfa sprouts were sonicated for 7 min to recover microflora from the surface, and the resulting suspensions were diluted and plated on selective and nonselective media. Total bacterial counts were obtained using acridine orange staining, and the percentage culturability was calculated. Phenotypic potential of sprout-associated microbial communities inoculated with biocontrol treatments was assessed using community-level physiological profiles based on patterns of use of 95 separate carbon sources in Biolog plates. Community-level physiological profiles were also determined using oxygen-sensitive fluorophore in BD microtiter plates to examine functional patterns in these communities. No significant differences in total and mesophilic aerobe microbial cell density or microbial richness resulting from the introduction of inoculants on alfalfa seeds with and without Salmonella were observed. P. fluorescens 2-79 exhibited the greatest reduction in the growth of Salmonella early during alfalfa growth (4.22 log at day 1), while the market sprout inoculum had the reverse effect, resulting in a maximum log reduction (5.48) of Salmonella on day 7. Community-level physiological profiles analyses revealed that market sprout communities peaked higher and faster compared with the other inoculants tested. These results suggest that

  12. Succession in a microbial mat community - A Gaian perspective

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Stolz, J. F.

    1984-01-01

    The contribution of prokaryotes to Gaian control systems is discussed. The survival of the Microcoleus-dominated stratified microbial community at Laguna Figueroa, after heavy rains flooded the evaporite flat with up to 3 m of water and deposited 5-10 cm of allocthonous sediment, demonstrates the resiliency of these communities to short-term perturbations while the microbial fossil record attests to their persistence over geologic time. It is shown that the great diversity of microbial species and their short generation time make them uniquely suited for Gaian mechanisms.

  13. Microbial abundance and community in subsurface flow constructed wetland microcosms: role of plant presence.

    PubMed

    Wang, Qian; Xie, Huijun; Ngo, Huu Hao; Guo, Wenshan; Zhang, Jian; Liu, Cui; Liang, Shuang; Hu, Zhen; Yang, Zhongchen; Zhao, Congcong

    2016-03-01

    In this research, the role of plants in improving microorganism growth conditions in subsurface flow constructed wetland (CW) microcosms was determined. In particular, microbial abundance and community were investigated during summer and winter in Phragmites australis-planted CW microcosms (PA) and unplanted CW microcosms (control, CT). Results revealed that the removal efficiencies of pollutants and microbial community structure varied in winter with variable microbial abundance. During summer, PA comprised more dominant phyla (e.g., Proteobacteria, Actinobacteria, and Bacteroidetes), whereas CT contained more Cyanobacteria and photosynthetic bacteria. During winter, the abundance of Proteobacteria was >40 % in PA but dramatically decreased in CT. Moreover, Cyanobacteria and photosynthetic bacterial dominance in CT decreased. In both seasons, bacteria were more abundant in root surfaces than in sand. Plant presence positively affected microbial abundance and community. The potential removal ability of CT, in which Cyanobacteria and photosynthetic bacteria were abundant during summer, was more significantly affected by temperature reduction than that of PA with plant presence.

  14. Metaproteomics: extracting and mining proteome information to characterize metabolic activities in microbial communities.

    PubMed

    Abraham, Paul E; Giannone, Richard J; Xiong, Weili; Hettich, Robert L

    2014-06-17

    Contemporary microbial ecology studies usually employ one or more "omics" approaches to investigate the structure and function of microbial communities. Among these, metaproteomics aims to characterize the metabolic activities of the microbial membership, providing a direct link between the genetic potential and functional metabolism. The successful deployment of metaproteomics research depends on the integration of high-quality experimental and bioinformatic techniques for uncovering the metabolic activities of a microbial community in a way that is complementary to other "meta-omic" approaches. The essential, quality-defining informatics steps in metaproteomics investigations are: (1) construction of the metagenome, (2) functional annotation of predicted protein-coding genes, (3) protein database searching, (4) protein inference, and (5) extraction of metabolic information. In this article, we provide an overview of current bioinformatic approaches and software implementations in metaproteome studies in order to highlight the key considerations needed for successful implementation of this powerful community-biology tool.

  15. Metaproteomics: extracting and mining proteome information to characterize metabolic activities in microbial communities

    SciTech Connect

    Abraham, Paul E; Giannone, Richard J; Xiong, Weili; Hettich, Robert {Bob} L

    2014-01-01

    Contemporary microbial ecology studies usually employ one or more omics approaches to investigate the structure and function of microbial communities. Among these, metaproteomics aims to characterize the metabolic activities of the microbial membership, providing a direct link between the genetic potential and functional metabolism. The successful deployment of metaproteomics research depends on the integration of high-quality experimental and bioinformatic techniques for uncovering the metabolic activities of a microbial community in a way that is complementary to other meta-omic approaches. The essential, quality-defining informatics steps in metaproteomics investigations are: (1) construction of the metagenome, (2) functional annotation of predicted protein-coding genes, (3) protein database searching, (4) protein inference, and (5) extraction of metabolic information. In this article, we provide an overview of current bioinformatic approaches and software implementations in metaproteome studies in order to highlight the key considerations needed for successful implementation of this powerful community-biology tool.

  16. Predicting taxonomic and functional structure of microbial communities in acid mine drainage

    PubMed Central

    Kuang, Jialiang; Huang, Linan; He, Zhili; Chen, Linxing; Hua, Zhengshuang; Jia, Pu; Li, Shengjin; Liu, Jun; Li, Jintian; Zhou, Jizhong; Shu, Wensheng

    2016-01-01

    Predicting the dynamics of community composition and functional attributes responding to environmental changes is an essential goal in community ecology but remains a major challenge, particularly in microbial ecology. Here, by targeting a model system with low species richness, we explore the spatial distribution of taxonomic and functional structure of 40 acid mine drainage (AMD) microbial communities across Southeast China profiled by 16S ribosomal RNA pyrosequencing and a comprehensive microarray (GeoChip). Similar environmentally dependent patterns of dominant microbial lineages and key functional genes were observed regardless of the large-scale geographical isolation. Functional and phylogenetic β-diversities were significantly correlated, whereas functional metabolic potentials were strongly influenced by environmental conditions and community taxonomic structure. Using advanced modeling approaches based on artificial neural networks, we successfully predicted the taxonomic and functional dynamics with significantly higher prediction accuracies of metabolic potentials (average Bray–Curtis similarity 87.8) as compared with relative microbial abundances (similarity 66.8), implying that natural AMD microbial assemblages may be better predicted at the functional genes level rather than at taxonomic level. Furthermore, relative metabolic potentials of genes involved in many key ecological functions (for example, nitrogen and phosphate utilization, metals resistance and stress response) were extrapolated to increase under more acidic and metal-rich conditions, indicating a critical strategy of stress adaptation in these extraordinary communities. Collectively, our findings indicate that natural selection rather than geographic distance has a more crucial role in shaping the taxonomic and functional patterns of AMD microbial community that readily predicted by modeling methods and suggest that the model-based approach is essential to better understand natural

  17. Microbial community assembly and metabolic function during mammalian corpse decomposition.

    PubMed

    Metcalf, Jessica L; Xu, Zhenjiang Zech; Weiss, Sophie; Lax, Simon; Van Treuren, Will; Hyde, Embriette R; Song, Se Jin; Amir, Amnon; Larsen, Peter; Sangwan, Naseer; Haarmann, Daniel; Humphrey, Greg C; Ackermann, Gail; Thompson, Luke R; Lauber, Christian; Bibat, Alexander; Nicholas, Catherine; Gebert, Matthew J; Petrosino, Joseph F; Reed, Sasha C; Gilbert, Jack A; Lynne, Aaron M; Bucheli, Sibyl R; Carter, David O; Knight, Rob

    2016-01-08

    Vertebrate corpse decomposition provides an important stage in nutrient cycling in most terrestrial habitats, yet microbially mediated processes are poorly understood. Here we combine deep microbial community characterization, community-level metabolic reconstruction, and soil biogeochemical assessment to understand the principles governing microbial community assembly during decomposition of mouse and human corpses on different soil substrates. We find a suite of bacterial and fungal groups that contribute to nitrogen cycling and a reproducible network of decomposers that emerge on predictable time scales. Our results show that this decomposer community is derived primarily from bulk soil, but key decomposers are ubiquitous in low abundance. Soil type was not a dominant factor driving community development, and the process of decomposition is sufficiently reproducible to offer new opportunities for forensic investigations.

  18. Relating Anaerobic Digestion Microbial Community and Process Function

    PubMed Central

    Venkiteshwaran, Kaushik; Bocher, Benjamin; Maki, James; Zitomer, Daniel

    2015-01-01

    Anaerobic digestion (AD) involves a consortium of microorganisms that convert substrates into biogas containing methane for renewable energy. The technology has suffered from the perception of being periodically unstable due to limited understanding of the relationship between microbial community structure and function. The emphasis of this review is to describe microbial communities in digesters and quantitative and qualitative relationships between community structure and digester function. Progress has been made in the past few decades to identify key microorganisms influencing AD. Yet, more work is required to realize robust, quantitative relationships between microbial community structure and functions such as methane production rate and resilience after perturbations. Other promising areas of research for improved AD may include methods to increase/control (1) hydrolysis rate, (2) direct interspecies electron transfer to methanogens, (3) community structure–function relationships of methanogens, (4) methanogenesis via acetate oxidation, and (5) bioaugmentation to study community–activity relationships or improve engineered bioprocesses. PMID:27127410

  19. Microbial community assembly and metabolic function during mammalian corpse decomposition

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Metcalf, Jessica L; Xu, Zhenjiang Zech; Weiss, Sophie; Lax, Simon; Van Treuren, Will; Hyde, Embriette R.; Song, Se Jin; Amir, Amnon; Larsen, Peter; Sangwan, Naseer; Haarmann, Daniel; Humphrey, Greg C; Ackermann, Gail; Thompson, Luke R; Lauber, Christian; Bibat, Alexander; Nicholas, Catherine; Gebert, Matthew J; Petrosino, Joseph F; Reed, Sasha C.; Gilbert, Jack A; Lynne, Aaron M; Bucheli, Sibyl R; Carter, David O; Knight, Rob

    2016-01-01

    Vertebrate corpse decomposition provides an important stage in nutrient cycling in most terrestrial habitats, yet microbially mediated processes are poorly understood. Here we combine deep microbial community characterization, community-level metabolic reconstruction, and soil biogeochemical assessment to understand the principles governing microbial community assembly during decomposition of mouse and human corpses on different soil substrates. We find a suite of bacterial and fungal groups that contribute to nitrogen cycling and a reproducible network of decomposers that emerge on predictable time scales. Our results show that this decomposer community is derived primarily from bulk soil, but key decomposers are ubiquitous in low abundance. Soil type was not a dominant factor driving community development, and the process of decomposition is sufficiently reproducible to offer new opportunities for forensic investigations.

  20. Coupling among Microbial Communities, Biogeochemistry, and Mineralogy across Biogeochemical Facies

    SciTech Connect

    Stegen, James C.; Konopka, Allan; McKinely, Jim; Murray, Christopher J.; Lin, Xueju; Miller, Micah D.; Kennedy, David W.; Miller, Erin A.; Resch, Charles T.; Fredrickson, Jim K.

    2016-07-29

    Physical properties of sediments are commonly used to define subsurface lithofacies and these same physical properties influence subsurface microbial communities. This suggests an (unexploited) opportunity to use the spatial distribution of facies to predict spatial variation in biogeochemically relevant microbial attributes. Here, we characterize three biogeochemical facies—oxidized, reduced, and transition—within one lithofacies and elucidate relationships among facies features and microbial community biomass, diversity, and community composition. Consistent with previous observations of biogeochemical hotspots at environmental transition zones, we find elevated biomass within a biogeochemical facies that occurred at the transition between oxidized and reduced biogeochemical facies. Microbial diversity—the number of microbial taxa—was lower within the reduced facies and was well-explained by a combination of pH and mineralogy. Null modeling revealed that microbial community composition was influenced by ecological selection imposed by redox state and mineralogy, possibly due to effects on nutrient availability or transport. As an illustrative case, we predict microbial biomass concentration across a three-dimensional spatial domain by coupling the spatial distribution of subsurface biogeochemical facies with biomass-facies relationships revealed here. We expect that merging such an approach with hydro-biogeochemical models will provide important constraints on simulated dynamics, thereby reducing uncertainty in model predictions.

  1. Patterns of Endemism and Habitat Selection in Coalbed Microbial Communities

    PubMed Central

    Lawson, Christopher E.; Strachan, Cameron R.; Williams, Dominique D.; Koziel, Susan; Hallam, Steven J.

    2015-01-01

    Microbially produced methane, a versatile, cleaner-burning alternative energy resource to fossil fuels, is sourced from a variety of natural and engineered ecosystems, including marine sediments, anaerobic digesters, shales, and coalbeds. There is a prevailing interest in developing environmental biotechnologies to enhance methane production. Here, we use small-subunit rRNA gene sequencing and metagenomics to better describe the interplay between coalbed methane (CBM) well conditions and microbial communities in the Alberta Basin. Our results show that CBM microbial community structures display patterns of endemism and habitat selection across the Alberta Basin, consistent with observations from other geographical locations. While some phylum-level taxonomic patterns were observed, relative abundances of specific taxonomic groups were localized to discrete wells, likely shaped by local environmental conditions, such as coal rank and depth-dependent physicochemical conditions. To better resolve functional potential within the CBM milieu, a metagenome from a deep volatile-bituminous coal sample was generated. This sample was dominated by Rhodobacteraceae genotypes, resolving a near-complete population genome bin related to Celeribacter sp. that encoded metabolic pathways for the degradation of a wide range of aromatic compounds and the production of methanogenic substrates via acidogenic fermentation. Genomic comparisons between the Celeribacter sp. population genome and related organisms isolated from different environments reflected habitat-specific selection pressures that included nitrogen availability and the ability to utilize diverse carbon substrates. Taken together, our observations reveal that both endemism and metabolic specialization should be considered in the development of biostimulation strategies for nonproductive wells or for those with declining productivity. PMID:26341214

  2. Patterns of Endemism and Habitat Selection in Coalbed Microbial Communities.

    PubMed

    Lawson, Christopher E; Strachan, Cameron R; Williams, Dominique D; Koziel, Susan; Hallam, Steven J; Budwill, Karen

    2015-11-01

    Microbially produced methane, a versatile, cleaner-burning alternative energy resource to fossil fuels, is sourced from a variety of natural and engineered ecosystems, including marine sediments, anaerobic digesters, shales, and coalbeds. There is a prevailing interest in developing environmental biotechnologies to enhance methane production. Here, we use small-subunit rRNA gene sequencing and metagenomics to better describe the interplay between coalbed methane (CBM) well conditions and microbial communities in the Alberta Basin. Our results show that CBM microbial community structures display patterns of endemism and habitat selection across the Alberta Basin, consistent with observations from other geographical locations. While some phylum-level taxonomic patterns were observed, relative abundances of specific taxonomic groups were localized to discrete wells, likely shaped by local environmental conditions, such as coal rank and depth-dependent physicochemical conditions. To better resolve functional potential within the CBM milieu, a metagenome from a deep volatile-bituminous coal sample was generated. This sample was dominated by Rhodobacteraceae genotypes, resolving a near-complete population genome bin related to Celeribacter sp. that encoded metabolic pathways for the degradation of a wide range of aromatic compounds and the production of methanogenic substrates via acidogenic fermentation. Genomic comparisons between the Celeribacter sp. population genome and related organisms isolated from different environments reflected habitat-specific selection pressures that included nitrogen availability and the ability to utilize diverse carbon substrates. Taken together, our observations reveal that both endemism and metabolic specialization should be considered in the development of biostimulation strategies for nonproductive wells or for those with declining productivity.

  3. Characterization and identification of microbial communities in bovine necrotic vulvovaginitis.

    PubMed

    Shpigel, N Y; Adler-Ashkenazy, L; Scheinin, S; Goshen, T; Arazi, A; Pasternak, Z; Gottlieb, Y

    2017-01-01

    Bovine necrotic vulvovaginitis (BNVV) is a severe and potentially fatal disease of post-partum cows that emerged in Israel after large dairy herds were merged. While post-partum cows are commonly affected by mild vulvovaginitis (BVV), in BNVV these benign mucosal abrasions develop into progressive deep necrotic lesions leading to sepsis and death if untreated. The etiology of BNVV is still unknown and a single pathogenic agent has not been found. We hypothesized that BNVV is a polymicrobial disease where the normally benign vaginal microbiome is remodeled and affects the local immune response. To this end, we compared the histopathological changes and the microbial communities using 16S rDNA metagenetic technique in biopsies taken from vaginal lesions in post-partum cows affected by BVV and BNVV. The hallmark of BNVV was the formation of complex polymicrobial communities in the submucosal fascia and abrogation of neutrophil recruitment in these lesions. Additionally, there was a marked difference in the composition of bacterial communities in the BNVV lesions in comparison to the benign BVV lesions. This difference was characterized by the abundance of Bacteroidetes and lower total community membership in BNVV. Indicator taxa for BNVV were Parvimonas, Porphyromonas, unclassified Veillonellaceae, Mycoplasma and Bacteroidetes, whereas unclassified Clostridiales was an indicator for BVV. The results support a polymicrobial etiology for BNVV.

  4. Altered precipitation regime affects the function and composition of soil microbial communities on multiple time scales.

    PubMed

    Zeglin, L H; Bottomley, P J; Jumpponen, A; Rice, C W; Arango, M; Lindsley, A; McGowan, A; Mfombep, P; Myrold, D D

    2013-10-01

    Climate change models predict that future precipitation patterns will entail lower-frequency but larger rainfall events, increasing the duration of dry soil conditions. Resulting shifts in microbial C cycling activity could affect soil C storage. Further, microbial response to rainfall events may be constrained by the physiological or nutrient limitation stress of extended drought periods; thus seasonal or multiannual precipitation regimes may influence microbial activity following soil wet-up. We quantified rainfall-driven dynamics of microbial processes that affect soil C loss and retention, and microbial community composition, in soils from a long-term (14-year) field experiment contrasting "Ambient" and "Altered" (extended intervals between rainfalls) precipitation regimes. We collected soil before, the day following, and five days following 2.5-cm rainfall events during both moist and dry periods (June and September 2011; soil water potential = -0.01 and -0.83 MPa, respectively), and measured microbial respiration, microbial biomass, organic matter decomposition potential (extracellular enzyme activities), and microbial community composition (phospholipid fatty acids). The equivalent rainfall events caused equivalent microbial respiration responses in both treatments. In contrast, microbial biomass was higher and increased after rainfall in the Altered treatment soils only, thus microbial C use efficiency (CUE) was higher in Altered than Ambient treatments (0.70 +/- 0.03 > 0.46 +/- 0.10). CUE was also higher in dry (September) soils. C-acquiring enzyme activities (beta-glucosidase, cellobiohydrolase, and phenol oxidase) increased after rainfall in moist (June), but not dry (September) soils. Both microbial biomass C:N ratios and fungal:bacterial ratios were higher at lower soil water contents, suggesting a functional and/or population-level shift in the microbiota at low soil water contents, and microbial community composition also differed following wet

  5. Soil and plant effects on microbial community structure.

    PubMed

    Buyer, Jeffrey S; Roberts, Daniel P; Russek-Cohen, Estelle

    2002-11-01

    We investigated the effects of two different plant species (corn and soybean) and three different soil types on microbial community structure in the rhizosphere. Our working hypothesis was that the rhizosphere effect would be strongest on fast-growing aerobic heterotrophs, while there would be little or no rhizosphere effect on oligotrophic and other slow-growing microorganisms. Culturable bacteria and fungi had larger population densities in the rhizosphere than in bulk soil. Communities were characterized by soil fatty acid analysis and by substrate utilization assays for bacteria and fungi. Fatty acid analysis revealed a very strong soil effect but little plant effect on the microbial community, indicating that the overall microbial community structure was not affected by the rhizosphere. There was a strong rhizosphere effect detected by the substrate utilization assay for fast-growing aerobic heterotrophic bacterial community structure, with soil controls and rhizosphere samples clearly distinguished from each other. There was a much weaker rhizosphere effect on fungal communities than on bacterial communities as measured by the substrate utilization assays. At this coarse level of community analysis, the rhizosphere microbial community was impacted most by soil effects, and the rhizosphere only affected a small portion of the total bacteria.

  6. Composition and physiological profiling of sprout-associated microbial communities

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Matos, Anabelle; Garland, Jay L.; Fett, William F.

    2002-01-01

    The native microfloras of various types of sprouts (alfalfa, clover, sunflower, mung bean, and broccoli sprouts) were examined to assess the relative effects of sprout type and inoculum factors (i.e., sprout-growing facility, seed lot, and inoculation with sprout-derived inocula) on the microbial community structure of sprouts. Sprouts were sonicated for 7 min or hand shaken with glass beads for 2 min to recover native microfloras from the surface, and the resulting suspensions were diluted and plated. The culturable fraction was characterized by the density (log CFU/g), richness (e.g., number of types of bacteria), and diversity (e.g., microbial richness and evenness) of colonies on tryptic soy agar plates incubated for 48 h at 30 degrees C. The relative similarity between sprout-associated microbial communities was assessed with the use of community-level physiological profiles (CLPPs) based on patterns of utilization of 95 separate carbon sources. Aerobic plate counts of 7.96 +/- 0.91 log CFU/g of sprout tissue (fresh weight) were observed, with no statistically significant differences in microbial cell density, richness, or diversity due to sprout type, sprout-growing facility, or seed lot. CLPP analyses revealed that the microbial communities associated with alfalfa and clover sprouts are more similar than those associated with the other sprout types tested. Variability among sprout types was more extensive than any differences between microbial communities associated with alfalfa and clover sprouts from different sprout-growing facilities and seed lots. These results indicate that the subsequent testing of biocontrol agents should focus on similar organisms for alfalfa and clover, but alternative types may be most suitable for the other sprout types tested. The inoculation of alfalfa sprouts with communities derived from various sprout types had a significant, source-independent effect on microbial community structure, indicating that the process of

  7. Composition and physiological profiling of sprout-associated microbial communities.

    PubMed

    Matos, Anabelle; Garland, Jay L; Fett, William F

    2002-12-01

    The native microfloras of various types of sprouts (alfalfa, clover, sunflower, mung bean, and broccoli sprouts) were examined to assess the relative effects of sprout type and inoculum factors (i.e., sprout-growing facility, seed lot, and inoculation with sprout-derived inocula) on the microbial community structure of sprouts. Sprouts were sonicated for 7 min or hand shaken with glass beads for 2 min to recover native microfloras from the surface, and the resulting suspensions were diluted and plated. The culturable fraction was characterized by the density (log CFU/g), richness (e.g., number of types of bacteria), and diversity (e.g., microbial richness and evenness) of colonies on tryptic soy agar plates incubated for 48 h at 30 degrees C. The relative similarity between sprout-associated microbial communities was assessed with the use of community-level physiological profiles (CLPPs) based on patterns of utilization of 95 separate carbon sources. Aerobic plate counts of 7.96 +/- 0.91 log CFU/g of sprout tissue (fresh weight) were observed, with no statistically significant differences in microbial cell density, richness, or diversity due to sprout type, sprout-growing facility, or seed lot. CLPP analyses revealed that the microbial communities associated with alfalfa and clover sprouts are more similar than those associated with the other sprout types tested. Variability among sprout types was more extensive than any differences between microbial communities associated with alfalfa and clover sprouts from different sprout-growing facilities and seed lots. These results indicate that the subsequent testing of biocontrol agents should focus on similar organisms for alfalfa and clover, but alternative types may be most suitable for the other sprout types tested. The inoculation of alfalfa sprouts with communities derived from various sprout types had a significant, source-independent effect on microbial community structure, indicating that the process of

  8. Comparative analysis of microbial community between different cathode systems of microbial fuel cells for denitrification.

    PubMed

    Li, Chao; Xu, Ming; Lu, Yi; Fang, Fang; Cao, Jiashun

    2016-01-01

    Two types of cathodic biofilm in microbial fuel cells (MFC) were established for comparison on their performance and microbial communities. Complete autotrophic simultaneous nitrification and denitrification (SND) without organics addition was achieved in nitrifying-MFC (N-MFC) with a total nitrogen (TN) removal rate of 0.35 mg/(L·h), which was even higher than that in denitrifying-MFC (D-MFC) at same TN level. Integrated denaturing gradient gel electrophoresis analysis based on both 16S rRNA and nirK genes showed that Alpha-, Gammaproteobacteria were the main denitrifier communities. Some potential autotrophic denitrifying bacteria which can use electrons and reducing power from cathodes, such as Shewanella oneidensis, Shewanella loihica, Pseudomonas aeruginosa, Starkeya novella and Rhodopseudomonas palustris were identified and selectively enriched on cathode biofilms. Further, relative abundance of denitrifying bacteria characterized by nirK/16S ratios was much higher in biofilm than suspended sludge according to real-time polymerase chain reaction. The highest enrichment efficiency for denitrifiers was obtained in N-MFC cathode biofilms, which confirmed autotrophic denitrifying bacteria enrichment is the key factor for a D-MFC system.

  9. Microbial community structure of two freshwater sponges using Illumina MiSeq sequencing revealed high microbial diversity.

    PubMed

    Gaikwad, Swapnil; Shouche, Yogesh S; Gade, Wasudev N

    2016-12-01

    Sponges are primitive metazoans that are known to harbour diverse and abundant microbes. All over the world attempts are being made to exploit these microbes for their biotechnological potential to produce, bioactive compounds and antimicrobial peptides. However, the majority of the studies are focussed on the marine sponges and studies on the freshwater sponges have been neglected so far. To increase our understanding of the microbial community structure of freshwater sponges, microbiota of two fresh water sponges namely, Eunapius carteri and Corvospongilla lapidosa is explored for the first time using Next Generation Sequencing (NGS) technology. Overall the microbial composition of these sponges comprises of 14 phyla and on an average, more than 2900 OTUs were obtained from C. lapidosa while E. carteri showed 980 OTUs which is higher than OTUs obtained in the marine sponges. Thus, our study showed that, fresh water sponges also posses highly diverse microbial community than previously thought and it is distinct from the marine sponge microbiota. The present study also revealed that microbial community structure of both the sponges is significantly different from each other and their respective water samples. In the present study, we have detected many bacterial lineages belonging to Firmicutes, Actinobacteria, Proteobacteria, Planctomycetes, etc. that are known to produce compounds of biotechnological importance. Overall, this study gives insight into the microbial composition of the freshwater sponges which is highly diverse and needs to be studied further to exploit their biotechnological capabilities.

  10. An integrated insight into the response of sedimentary microbial communities to heavy metal contamination

    PubMed Central

    Yin, Huaqun; Niu, Jiaojiao; Ren, Youhua; Cong, Jing; Zhang, Xiaoxia; Fan, Fenliang; Xiao, Yunhua; Zhang, Xian; Deng, Jie; Xie, Ming; He, Zhili; Zhou, Jizhong; Liang, Yili; Liu, Xueduan

    2015-01-01

    Response of biological communities to environmental stresses is a critical issue in ecology, but how microbial communities shift across heavy metal gradients remain unclear. To explore the microbial response to heavy metal contamination (e.g., Cr, Mn, Zn), the composition, structure and functional potential of sedimentary microbial community were investigated by sequencing of 16S rRNA gene amplicons and a functional gene microarray. Analysis of 16S rRNA sequences revealed that the composition and structure of sedimentary microbial communities changed significantly across a gradient of heavy metal contamination, and the relative abundances were higher for Firmicutes, Chloroflexi and Crenarchaeota, but lower for Proteobacteria and Actinobacteria in highly contaminated samples. Also, molecular ecological network analysis of sequencing data indicated that their possible interactions might be enhanced in highly contaminated communities. Correspondently, key functional genes involved in metal homeostasis (e.g., chrR, metC, merB), carbon metabolism, and organic remediation showed a higher abundance in highly contaminated samples, indicating that bacterial communities in contaminated areas may modulate their energy consumption and organic remediation ability. This study indicated that the sedimentary indigenous microbial community may shift the composition and structure as well as function priority and interaction network to increase their adaptability and/or resistance to environmental contamination. PMID:26391875

  11. The Inter-Valley Soil Comparative Survey: the ecology of Dry Valley edaphic microbial communities

    PubMed Central

    Lee, Charles K; Barbier, Béatrice A; Bottos, Eric M; McDonald, Ian R; Cary, Stephen Craig

    2012-01-01

    Recent applications of molecular genetics to edaphic microbial communities of the McMurdo Dry Valleys and elsewhere have rejected a long-held belief that Antarctic soils contain extremely limited microbial diversity. The Inter-Valley Soil Comparative Survey aims to elucidate the factors shaping these unique microbial communities and their biogeography by integrating molecular genetic approaches with biogeochemical analyses. Although the microbial communities of Dry Valley soils may be complex, there is little doubt that the ecosystem's food web is relatively simple, and evidence suggests that physicochemical conditions may have the dominant role in shaping microbial communities. To examine this hypothesis, bacterial communities from representative soil samples collected in four geographically disparate Dry Valleys were analyzed using molecular genetic tools, including pyrosequencing of 16S rRNA gene PCR amplicons. Results show that the four communities are structurally and phylogenetically distinct, and possess significantly different levels of diversity. Strikingly, only 2 of 214 phylotypes were found in all four valleys, challenging a widespread assumption that the microbiota of the Dry Valleys is composed of a few cosmopolitan species. Analysis of soil geochemical properties indicated that salt content, alongside altitude and Cu2+, was significantly correlated with differences in microbial communities. Our results indicate that the microbial ecology of Dry Valley soils is highly localized and that physicochemical factors potentially have major roles in shaping the microbiology of ice-free areas of Antarctica. These findings hint at links between Dry Valley glacial geomorphology and microbial ecology, and raise previously unrecognized issues related to environmental management of this unique ecosystem. PMID:22170424

  12. Community-Level Physiological Profiling of Microbial Communities in Constructed Wetlands: Effects of Sample Preparation.

    PubMed

    Button, Mark; Weber, Kela; Nivala, Jaime; Aubron, Thomas; Müller, Roland Arno

    2016-03-01

    Community-level physiological profiling (CLPP) using BIOLOG® EcoPlates™ has become a popular method for characterizing and comparing the functional diversity, functional potential, and metabolic activity of heterotrophic microbial communities. The method was originally developed for profiling soil communities; however, its usage has expanded into the fields of ecotoxicology, agronomy, and the monitoring and profiling of microbial communities in various wastewater treatment systems, including constructed wetlands for water pollution control. When performing CLPP on aqueous samples from constructed wetlands, a wide variety of sample characteristics can be encountered and challenges may arise due to excessive solids, color, or turbidity. The aim of this study was to investigate the impacts of different sample preparation methods on CLPP performed on a variety of aqueous samples covering a broad range of physical and chemical characteristics. The results show that using filter paper, centrifugation, or settling helped clarify samples for subsequent CLPP analysis, however did not do so as effectively as dilution for the darkest samples. Dilution was able to provide suitable clarity for the darkest samples; however, 100-fold dilution significantly affected the carbon source utilization patterns (CSUPs), particularly with samples that were already partially or fully clear. Ten-fold dilution also had some effect on the CSUPs of samples which were originally clear; however, the effect was minimal. Based on these findings, for this specific set of samples, a 10-fold dilution provided a good balance between ease of use, sufficient clarity (for dark samples), and limited effect on CSUPs. The process and findings outlined here can hopefully serve future studies looking to utilize CLPP for functional analysis of microbial communities and also assist in comparing data from studies where different sample preparation methods were utilized.

  13. Systems-based approaches to unravel multi-species microbial community functioning

    PubMed Central

    Abram, Florence

    2014-01-01

    Some of the most transformative discoveries promising to enable the resolution of this century's grand societal challenges will most likely arise from environmental science and particularly environmental microbiology and biotechnology. Understanding how microbes interact in situ, and how microbial communities respond to environmental changes remains an enormous challenge for science. Systems biology offers a powerful experimental strategy to tackle the exciting task of deciphering microbial interactions. In this framework, entire microbial communities are considered as metaorganisms and each level of biological information (DNA, RNA, proteins and metabolites) is investigated along with in situ environmental characteristics. In this way, systems biology can help unravel the interactions between the different parts of an ecosystem ultimately responsible for its emergent properties. Indeed each level of biological information provides a different level of characterisation of the microbial communities. Metagenomics, metatranscriptomics, metaproteomics, metabolomics and SIP-omics can be employed to investigate collectively microbial community structure, potential, function, activity and interactions. Omics approaches are enabled by high-throughput 21st century technologies and this review will discuss how their implementation has revolutionised our understanding of microbial communities. PMID:25750697

  14. Microbial Community in High Arsenic Shallow Groundwater Aquifers in Hetao Basin of Inner Mongolia, China

    PubMed Central

    Li, Ping; Wang, Yanhong; Dai, Xinyue; Zhang, Rui; Jiang, Zhou; Jiang, Dawei; Wang, Shang; Jiang, Hongchen; Wang, Yanxin; Dong, Hailiang

    2015-01-01

    A survey was carried out on the microbial community of 20 groundwater samples (4 low and 16 high arsenic groundwater) and 19 sediments from three boreholes (two high arsenic and one low arsenic boreholes) in a high arsenic groundwater system located in Hetao Basin, Inner Mongolia, using the 454 pyrosequencing approach. A total of 233,704 sequence reads were obtained and classified into 12–267 operational taxonomic units (OTUs). Groundwater and sediment samples were divided into low and high arsenic groups based on measured geochemical parameters and microbial communities, by hierarchical clustering and principal coordinates analysis. Richness and diversity of the microbial communities in high arsenic sediments are higher than those in high arsenic groundwater. Microbial community structure was significantly different either between low and high arsenic samples or between groundwater and sediments. Acinetobacter, Pseudomonas, Psychrobacter and Alishewanella were the top four genera in high arsenic groundwater, while Thiobacillus, Pseudomonas, Hydrogenophaga, Enterobacteriaceae, Sulfuricurvum and Arthrobacter dominated high arsenic sediments. Archaeal sequences in high arsenic groundwater were mostly related to methanogens. Biota-environment matching and co-inertia analyses showed that arsenic, total organic carbon, SO42-, SO42-/total sulfur ratio, and Fe2+ were important environmental factors shaping the observed microbial communities. The results of this study expand our current understanding of microbial ecology in high arsenic groundwater aquifers and emphasize the potential importance of microbes in arsenic transformation in the Hetao Basin, Inner Mongolia. PMID:25970606

  15. Microbial community in high arsenic shallow groundwater aquifers in Hetao Basin of Inner Mongolia, China.

    PubMed

    Li, Ping; Wang, Yanhong; Dai, Xinyue; Zhang, Rui; Jiang, Zhou; Jiang, Dawei; Wang, Shang; Jiang, Hongchen; Wang, Yanxin; Dong, Hailiang

    2015-01-01

    A survey was carried out on the microbial community of 20 groundwater samples (4 low and 16 high arsenic groundwater) and 19 sediments from three boreholes (two high arsenic and one low arsenic boreholes) in a high arsenic groundwater system located in Hetao Basin, Inner Mongolia, using the 454 pyrosequencing approach. A total of 233,704 sequence reads were obtained and classified into 12-267 operational taxonomic units (OTUs). Groundwater and sediment samples were divided into low and high arsenic groups based on measured geochemical parameters and microbial communities, by hierarchical clustering and principal coordinates analysis. Richness and diversity of the microbial communities in high arsenic sediments are higher than those in high arsenic groundwater. Microbial community structure was significantly different either between low and high arsenic samples or between groundwater and sediments. Acinetobacter, Pseudomonas, Psychrobacter and Alishewanella were the top four genera in high arsenic groundwater, while Thiobacillus, Pseudomonas, Hydrogenophaga, Enterobacteriaceae, Sulfuricurvum and Arthrobacter dominated high arsenic sediments. Archaeal sequences in high arsenic groundwater were mostly related to methanogens. Biota-environment matching and co-inertia analyses showed that arsenic, total organic carbon, SO4(2-), SO4(2-)/total sulfur ratio, and Fe(2+) were important environmental factors shaping the observed microbial communities. The results of this study expand our current understanding of microbial ecology in high arsenic groundwater aquifers and emphasize the potential importance of microbes in arsenic transformation in the Hetao Basin, Inner Mongolia.

  16. Microbial community structure elucidates performance of Glyceria maxima plant microbial fuel cell.

    PubMed

    Timmers, Ruud A; Rothballer, Michael; Strik, David P B T B; Engel, Marion; Schulz, Stephan; Schloter, Michael; Hartmann, Anton; Hamelers, Bert; Buisman, Cees

    2012-04-01

    The plant microbial fuel cell (PMFC) is a technology in which living plant roots provide electron donor, via rhizodeposition, to a mixed microbial community to generate electricity in a microbial fuel cell. Analysis and localisation of the microbial community is necessary for gaining insight into the competition for electron donor in a PMFC. This paper characterises the anode-rhizosphere bacterial community of a Glyceria maxima (reed mannagrass) PMFC. Electrochemically active bacteria (EAB) were located on the root surfaces, but they were more abundant colonising the graphite granular electrode. Anaerobic cellulolytic bacteria dominated the area where most of the EAB were found, indicating that the current was probably generated via the hydrolysis of cellulose. Due to the presence of oxygen and nitrate, short-chain fatty acid-utilising denitrifiers were the major competitors for the electron donor. Acetate-utilising methanogens played a minor role in the competition for electron donor, probably due to the availability of graphite granules as electron acceptors.

  17. Adaptation of aquatic microbial communities to pollutant stress

    SciTech Connect

    Barkay, T.; Pritchard, H.

    1988-01-01

    Adaptation to biodegradation of p-nitrophenol and to volatilization of Hg/sup 2 +/ are examples of the role the process plays in removal of environmental pollutants and in maintaining active microbial communities in impacted ecosystems. A molecular mechanism of adaptation to Hg/sup 2 +/ is suggested by the enrichment of mercury resistance (MER) genes in some communities upon exposure to mercury.

  18. Soil Microbial Community Responses to Multiple Experimental Climate Change Drivers

    SciTech Connect

    Castro Gonzalez, Hector F; Classen, Aimee T; Austin, Emily E; Norby, Richard J; Schadt, Christopher Warren

    2010-01-01

    Researchers agree that climate change factors such as rising atmospheric [CO{sub 2}] and warming will likely interact to modify ecosystem properties and processes. However, the response of the microbial communities that regulate ecosystem processes is less predictable. We measured the direct and interactive effects of climatic change on soil fungal and bacterial communities (abundance and composition) in a multifactor climate change experiment that exposed a constructed old-field ecosystem to different atmospheric CO{sub 2} concentration (ambient, +300 ppm), temperature (ambient, +3 C), and precipitation (wet and dry) might interact to alter soil bacterial and fungal abundance and community structure in an old-field ecosystem. We found that (i) fungal abundance increased in warmed treatments; (ii) bacterial abundance increased in warmed plots with elevated atmospheric [CO{sub 2}] but decreased in warmed plots under ambient atmospheric [CO{sub 2}]; (iii) the phylogenetic distribution of bacterial and fungal clones and their relative abundance varied among treatments, as indicated by changes in 16S rRNA and 28S rRNA genes; (iv) changes in precipitation altered the relative abundance of Proteobacteria and Acidobacteria, where Acidobacteria decreased with a concomitant increase in the Proteobacteria in wet relative to dry treatments; and (v) changes in precipitation altered fungal community composition, primarily through lineage specific changes within a recently discovered group known as soil clone group I. Taken together, our results indicate that climate change drivers and their interactions may cause changes in bacterial and fungal overall abundance; however, changes in precipitation tended to have a much greater effect on the community composition. These results illustrate the potential for complex community changes in terrestrial ecosystems under climate change scenarios that alter multiple factors simultaneously.

  19. Coupling among Microbial Communities, Biogeochemistry, and Mineralogy across Biogeochemical Facies.

    PubMed

    Stegen, James C; Konopka, Allan; McKinley, James P; Murray, Chris; Lin, Xueju; Miller, Micah D; Kennedy, David W; Miller, Erin A; Resch, Charles T; Fredrickson, Jim K

    2016-07-29

    Physical properties of sediments are commonly used to define subsurface lithofacies and these same physical properties influence subsurface microbial communities. This suggests an (unexploited) opportunity to use the spatial distribution of facies to predict spatial variation in biogeochemically relevant microbial attributes. Here, we characterize three biogeochemical facies-oxidized, reduced, and transition-within one lithofacies and elucidate relationships among facies features and microbial community biomass, richness, and composition. Consistent with previous observations of biogeochemical hotspots at environmental transition zones, we find elevated biomass within a biogeochemical facies that occurred at the transition between oxidized and reduced biogeochemical facies. Microbial richness-the number of microbial taxa-was lower within the reduced facies and was well-explained by a combination of pH and mineralogy. Null modeling revealed that microbial community composition was influenced by ecological selection imposed by redox state and mineralogy, possibly due to effects on nutrient availability or transport. As an illustrative case, we predict microbial biomass concentration across a three-dimensional spatial domain by coupling the spatial distribution of subsurface biogeochemical facies with biomass-facies relationships revealed here. We expect that merging such an approach with hydro-biogeochemical models will provide important constraints on simulated dynamics, thereby reducing uncertainty in model predictions.

  20. Coupling among Microbial Communities, Biogeochemistry, and Mineralogy across Biogeochemical Facies

    PubMed Central

    Stegen, James C.; Konopka, Allan; McKinley, James P.; Murray, Chris; Lin, Xueju; Miller, Micah D.; Kennedy, David W.; Miller, Erin A.; Resch, Charles T.; Fredrickson, Jim K.

    2016-01-01

    Physical properties of sediments are commonly used to define subsurface lithofacies and these same physical properties influence subsurface microbial communities. This suggests an (unexploited) opportunity to use the spatial distribution of facies to predict spatial variation in biogeochemically relevant microbial attributes. Here, we characterize three biogeochemical facies—oxidized, reduced, and transition—within one lithofacies and elucidate relationships among facies features and microbial community biomass, richness, and composition. Consistent with previous observations of biogeochemical hotspots at environmental transition zones, we find elevated biomass within a biogeochemical facies that occurred at the transition between oxidized and reduced biogeochemical facies. Microbial richness—the number of microbial taxa—was lower within the reduced facies and was well-explained by a combination of pH and mineralogy. Null modeling revealed that microbial community composition was influenced by ecological selection imposed by redox state and mineralogy, possibly due to effects on nutrient availability or transport. As an illustrative case, we predict microbial biomass concentration across a three-dimensional spatial domain by coupling the spatial distribution of subsurface biogeochemical facies with biomass-facies relationships revealed here. We expect that merging such an approach with hydro-biogeochemical models will provide important constraints on simulated dynamics, thereby reducing uncertainty in model predictions. PMID:27469056

  1. Lipid Biomarkers for a Hypersaline Microbial Mat Community

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Jahnke, Linda L.; Embaye, Tsege; Turk, Kendra A.

    2003-01-01

    The use of lipid biomarkers and their carbon isotopic compositions are valuable tools for establishing links to ancient microbial ecosystems. As witnessed by the stromatolite record, benthic microbial mats grew in shallow water lagoonal environments where microorganisms had virtually no competition apart from the harsh conditions of hypersalinity, desiccation and intense light. Today, the modern counterparts of these microbial ecosystems find appropriate niches in only a few places where extremes eliminate eukaryotic grazers. Answers to many outstanding questions about the evolution of microorganisms and their environments on early Earth are best answered through study of these extant analogs. Lipids associated with various groups of bacteria can be valuable biomarkers for identification of specific groups of microorganisms both in ancient organic-rich sedimentary rocks (geolipids) and contemporary microbial communities (membrane lipids). Use of compound specific isotope analysis adds additional refinement to the identification of biomarker source, so that it is possible to take advantage of the 3C-depletions associated with various functional groups of organisms (i.e. autotrophs, heterotrophs, methanotrophs, methanogens) responsible for the cycling of carbon within a microbial community. Our recent work has focused on a set of hypersaline evaporation ponds at Guerrero Negro, Baja California Sur, Mexico which support the abundant growth of Microcoleus-dominated microbial mats. Specific biomarkers for diatoms, cyanobacteria, archaea, green nonsulfur (GNS), sulfate reducing, and methanotrophic bacteria have been identified. Analyses of the ester-bound fatty acids indicate a highly diverse microbial community, dominated by photosynthetic organisms at the surface.

  2. Managing microbial communities for sequentially reconstruct genomes from complex metagenomes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Delmont, Tom O.; Vogel, Timothy M.; Simonet, Pascal

    2013-04-01

    Global understanding on environmental microbial communities is currently limited by the bottleneck of genome reconstruction. Soil is a typical example where individual cells are currently mostly uncultured and metagenomic datasets unassembled. In this study, the microbial community composition of a natural grassland soil was managed under several controlled selective pressures to experiment a "multi-evenness" stratagem for sequentially attempt to reconstruct genomes from a complex metagenome. While lowly represented in the natural community, several newly dominant genomes (an enrichment attaining 105 in some cases) were successfully reconstructed under various "harsh" tested conditions. These genomes belong to several genera including (but not restricted to) Leifsonia, Rhodanobacter, Bacillus, Ktedonobacter, Xanthomonas, Streptomyces and Burkholderia. So far, from 10 to 78% of generated metagenomic datasets were reconstructed, so providing access to more than 88 000 genes of known or unknown functions and to their genetic environment. Adaptative genes directly related to selective pressures were found, mostly in large plasmids. Functions of potential industrial interest (e.g., novel polyketide synthase modules in Streptomyces) were also discovered. Furthermore, an important phage infection snapshot (>1500X of coverage for the most represented phage) was observed among the Streptomyces population (three distinct genomes reconstructed) of a particular enrichment (mercury, 0.02g/kg) during the fourth month of incubation. This "divide and conquer" strategy could be applied to other environments and using auxiliary sequencing approaches like single cell to detect, connect and mine taxa and functions of interest while creating an extensive set of reference genomes from across the planet. Next limit could turn out to become our imagination defining novel selective pressures to sequentially make dominant the 1030 cells of the biosphere.

  3. Metagenomic insights into the dynamics of microbial communities in food.

    PubMed

    Kergourlay, Gilles; Taminiau, Bernard; Daube, Georges; Champomier Vergès, Marie-Christine

    2015-11-20

    Metagenomics has proven to be a powerful tool in exploring a large diversity of natural environments such as air, soil, water, and plants, as well as various human microbiota (e.g. digestive tract, lungs, skin). DNA sequencing techniques are becoming increasingly popular and less and less expensive. Given that high-throughput DNA sequencing approaches have only recently started to be used to decipher food microbial ecosystems, there is a significant growth potential for such technologies in the field of food microbiology. The aim of this review is to present a survey of recent food investigations via metagenomics and to illustrate how this approach can be a valuable tool in the better characterization of foods and their transformation, storage and safety. Traditional food in particular has been thoroughly explored by global approaches in order to provide information on multi-species and multi-organism communities.

  4. Biocorrosive Thermophilic Microbial Communities in Alaskan North Slope Oil Facilities

    SciTech Connect

    Duncan, Kathleen E.; Gieg, Lisa M.; Parisi, Victoria A.; Tanner, Ralph S.; Green Tringe, Susannah; Bristow, Jim; Suflita, Joseph M.

    2009-09-16

    Corrosion of metallic oilfield pipelines by microorganisms is a costly but poorly understood phenomenon, with standard treatment methods targeting mesophilic sulfatereducing bacteria. In assessing biocorrosion potential at an Alaskan North Slope oil field, we identified thermophilic hydrogen-using methanogens, syntrophic bacteria, peptideand amino acid-fermenting bacteria, iron reducers, sulfur/thiosulfate-reducing bacteria and sulfate-reducing archaea. These microbes can stimulate metal corrosion through production of organic acids, CO2, sulfur species, and via hydrogen oxidation and iron reduction, implicating many more types of organisms than are currently targeted. Micromolar quantities of putative anaerobic metabolites of C1-C4 n-alkanes in pipeline fluids were detected, implying that these low molecular weight hydrocarbons, routinely injected into reservoirs for oil recovery purposes, are biodegraded and provide biocorrosive microbial communities with an important source of nutrients.

  5. Biocorrosive thermophilic microbial communities in Alaskan North Slope oil facilities.

    PubMed

    Duncan, Kathleen E; Gieg, Lisa M; Parisi, Victoria A; Tanner, Ralph S; Tringe, Susannah Green; Bristow, Jim; Suflita, Joseph M

    2009-10-15

    Corrosion of metallic oilfield pipelines by microorganisms is a costly but poorly understood phenomenon, with standard treatment methods targeting mesophilic sulfate-reducing bacteria. In assessing biocorrosion potential at an Alaskan North Slope oil field, we identified thermophilic hydrogen-using methanogens, syntrophic bacteria, peptide- and amino acid-fermenting bacteria, iron reducers, sulfur/thiosulfate-reducing bacteria, and sulfate-reducing archaea. These microbes can stimulate metal corrosion through production of organic acids, CO2, sulfur species, and via hydrogen oxidation and iron reduction, implicating many more types of organisms than are currently targeted. Micromolar quantities of putative anaerobic metabolites of C1-C4 n-alkanes in pipeline fluids were detected, implying that these low molecular weight hydrocarbons, routinely reinjected into reservoirs for oil recovery purposes, are biodegraded and can provide biocorrosive microbial communities with an important source of nutrients.

  6. Microbial Community Profiles in Wastewaters from Onsite Wastewater Treatment Systems Technology

    PubMed Central

    Jałowiecki, Łukasz; Chojniak, Joanna Małgorzata; Dorgeloh, Elmar; Hegedusova, Berta; Ejhed, Helene; Magnér, Jörgen; Płaza, Grażyna Anna

    2016-01-01

    The aim of the study was to determine the potential of community-level physiological profiles (CLPPs) methodology as an assay for characterization of the metabolic diversity of wastewater samples and to link the metabolic diversity patterns to efficiency of select onsite biological wastewater facilities. Metabolic fingerprints obtained from the selected samples were used to understand functional diversity implied by the carbon substrate shifts. Three different biological facilities of onsite wastewater treatment were evaluated: fixed bed reactor (technology A), trickling filter/biofilter system (technology B), and aerated filter system (the fluidized bed reactor, technology C). High similarities of the microbial community functional structures were found among the samples from the three onsite wastewater treatment plants (WWTPs), as shown by the diversity indices. Principal components analysis (PCA) showed that the diversity and CLPPs of microbial communities depended on the working efficiency of the wastewater treatment technologies. This study provided an overall picture of microbial community functional structures of investigated samples in WWTPs and discerned the linkages between microbial communities and technologies of onsite WWTPs used. The results obtained confirmed that metabolic profiles could be used to monitor treatment processes as valuable biological indicators of onsite wastewater treatment technologies efficiency. This is the first step toward understanding relations of technology types with microbial community patterns in raw and treated wastewaters. PMID:26807728

  7. Microbial communities within saltmarsh sediments: Composition, abundance and pollution constraints

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Machado, Ana; Magalhães, Catarina; Mucha, Ana P.; Almeida, C. Marisa R.; Bordalo, Adriano A.

    2012-03-01

    The influence of the saltmarsh plant Halimione portucaloides and the level of sediment metal contamination on the distribution of microbial communities were investigated in two Portuguese estuarine systems with different degrees of metal contamination: the Cavado (41.5 N; 8.7 W) and Sado estuaries. In the Sado, two saltmarshes were studied: Lisnave (38.4 N; 8.7 W) and Comporta (38.4 N; 8.8 W). A PCR rDNA-DGGE approach and direct microscopic counts of DAPI-stained cells were applied to study the biodiversity and abundance of prokaryotic communities. Sediment characteristics and metal concentrations (Cd, Cr, Cu, Fe, Pb, Mn, Ni and Zn) were also evaluated to identify possible environmental pollution constraints on spatial and temporal microbial dynamics. Redundancy analysis (RDA) revealed that the Lisnave saltmarsh microbial community was usually associated with a higher degree of metal contamination, especially the metal Pb. In clear contrast, the Cavado estuary microbial assemblage composition was associated with low metal concentrations but higher organic matter content. The Comporta saltmarsh bacterial community clustered in a separate branch, and was associated with higher levels of different metals, such as Ni, Cr and Zn. Additionally, the microbial community structure of the Lisnave and Cavado showed a seasonal pattern. Moreover, microbial abundance correlated negatively with metal concentrations, being higher at the Cavado estuarine site and with general higher counts in the rhizosediment. These findings suggest that increased metal concentrations negatively affect the abundance of prokaryotic cells and that saltmarsh plants may have a pivotal role in shaping the microbial community structure.

  8. Ecofunctional enzymes of microbial communities in ground water.

    PubMed

    Fliermans, C B; Franck, M M; Hazen, T C; Gorden, R W

    1997-07-01

    Biolog technology was initially developed as a rapid, broad spectrum method for the biochemical identification of clinical microorganisms. Demand and creative application of this technology has resulted in the development of Biolog plates for Gram-negative and Gram-positive bacteria, for yeast and Lactobacillus sp. Microbial ecologists have extended the use of these plates from the identification of pure culture isolates to a tool for quantifying the metabolic patterns of mixed cultures, consortia and entire microbial communities. Patterns that develop on Biolog microplates are a result of the oxidation of the substrates by microorganisms in the inoculum and the subsequent reduction of the tetrazolium dye to form a color in response to detectable reactions. Depending upon the functional enzymes present in the isolate or community one of a possible 4 x 10(28) patterns can be expressed. The patterns were used to distinguish the physiological ecology of various microbial communities present in remediated groundwater. The data indicate that one can observe differences in the microbial community among treatments of bioventing, 1% and 4% methane injection, and pulse injection of air, methane and nutrients both between and among wells. The investigation indicates that Biolog technology is a useful parameter to measure the physiological response of the microbial community to perturbation and allows one to design enhancement techniques to further the degradation of selected recalcitrant and toxic chemicals. Further it allows one to evaluate the recovery of the microbial subsurface ecosystem after the perturbations have ceased. We propose the term 'ecofunctional enzymes' (EFE) as the most descriptive and useful term for the Biolog plate patterns generated by microbial communities. We offer this designation and provide ecological application in an attempt to standardize the terminology for this relatively new and unique technology.

  9. Stochastic assembly leads to alternative communities with distinct functions in a bioreactor microbial community.

    PubMed

    Zhou, Jizhong; Liu, Wenzong; Deng, Ye; Jiang, Yi-Huei; Xue, Kai; He, Zhili; Van Nostrand, Joy D; Wu, Liyou; Yang, Yunfeng; Wang, Aijie

    2013-03-05

    ABSTRACT The processes and mechanisms of community assembly and its relationships to community functioning are central issues in ecology. Both deterministic and stochastic factors play important roles in shaping community composition and structure, but the connection between community assembly and ecosystem functioning remains elusive, especially in microbial communities. Here, we used microbial electrolysis cell reactors as a model system to examine the roles of stochastic assembly in determining microbial community structure and functions. Under identical environmental conditions with the same source community, ecological drift (i.e., initial stochastic colonization) and subsequent biotic interactions created dramatically different communities with little overlap among 14 identical reactors, indicating that stochastic assembly played dominant roles in determining microbial community structure. Neutral community modeling analysis revealed that deterministic factors also played significant roles in shaping microbial community structure in these reactors. Most importantly, the newly formed communities differed substantially in community functions (e.g., H2 production), which showed strong linkages to community structure. This study is the first to demonstrate that stochastic assembly plays a dominant role in determining not only community structure but also ecosystem functions. Elucidating the links among community assembly, biodiversity, and ecosystem functioning is critical to understanding ecosystem functioning, biodiversity preservation, and ecosystem management. IMPORTANCE Microorganisms are the most diverse group of life known on earth. Although it is well documented that microbial natural biodiversity is extremely high, it is not clear why such high diversity is generated and maintained. Numerous studies have established the roles of niche-based deterministic factors (e.g., pH, temperature, and salt) in shaping microbial biodiversity, the importance of

  10. Evaluation of Potential Impacts of Microbial Activity on Drift Chemistry

    SciTech Connect

    Y. Wang

    2004-11-18

    ''Evaluation of Potential Impacts of Microbial Activity on Drift Chemistry'' focuses on the potential for microbial communities that could be active in repository emplacement drifts to influence the in-drift bulk chemical environment. This report feeds analyses to support the inclusion or exclusion of features, events, and processes (FEPs) in the total system performance assessment (TSPA) for the license application (LA), but this work is not expected to generate direct feeds to the TSPA-LA. The purpose was specified by, and the evaluation was performed and is documented in accordance with, ''Technical Work Plan For: Near-Field Environment and Transport In-Drift Geochemistry Analyses'' (BSC 2004 [DIRS 172402], Section 2.1). This report addresses all of the FEPs assigned by the technical work plan (TWP), including the development of exclusion arguments for FEPs that are not carried forward to the TSPA-LA. Except for an editorial correction noted in Section 6.2, there were no other deviations from the TWP. This report documents the completion of all assigned tasks, as follows (BSC 2004 DIRS 172402, Section 1.2.1): (1) Perform analyses to evaluate the potential for microbial activity in the waste emplacement drift under the constraints of anticipated physical and chemical conditions. (2) Evaluate uncertainties associated with these analyses. (3) Determine whether the potential for microbes warrants a feed to TSPA-LA to account for predicted effects on repository performance. (4) Provide information to address the ''Yucca Mountain Review Plan, Final Report'' (NUREG-1804) (NRC 2003 [DIRS 163274]) and Key Technical Issues and agreements, as appropriate. (5) Develop information for inclusion or exclusion of FEPs.

  11. Effects of Actinomycete Secondary Metabolites on Sediment Microbial Communities.

    PubMed

    Patin, Nastassia V; Schorn, Michelle; Aguinaldo, Kristen; Lincecum, Tommie; Moore, Bradley S; Jensen, Paul R

    2017-02-15

    Marine sediments harbor complex microbial communities that remain poorly studied relative to other biomes such as seawater. Moreover, bacteria in these communities produce antibiotics and other bioactive secondary metabolites, yet little is known about how these compounds affect microbial community structure. In this study, we used next-generation amplicon sequencing to assess native microbial community composition in shallow tropical marine sediments. The results revealed complex communities comprised of largely uncultured taxa, with considerable spatial heterogeneity and known antibiotic producers comprising only a small fraction of the total diversity. Organic extracts from cultured strains of the sediment-dwelling actinomycete genus Salinispora were then used in mesocosm studies to address how secondary metabolites shape sediment community composition. We identified predatory bacteria and other taxa that were consistently reduced in the extract-treated mesocosms, suggesting that they may be the targets of allelopathic interactions. We tested related taxa for extract sensitivity and found general agreement with the culture-independent results. Conversely, several taxa were enriched in the extract-treated mesocosms, suggesting that some bacteria benefited from the interactions. The results provide evidence that bacterial secondary metabolites can have complex and significant effects on sediment microbial communities.

  12. Microbial communities play important roles in modulating paddy soil fertility.

    PubMed

    Luo, Xuesong; Fu, Xiaoqian; Yang, Yun; Cai, Peng; Peng, Shaobing; Chen, Wenli; Huang, Qiaoyun

    2016-02-04

    We studied microbial communities in two paddy soils, which did not receive nitrogen fertilization and were distinguished by the soil properties. The two microbial communities differed in the relative abundance of gram-negative bacteria and total microbial biomass. Variability in microbial communities between the two fields was related to the levels of phosphorus and soil moisture. Redundancy analysis for individual soils showed that the bacterial community dynamics in the high-yield soil were significantly correlated with total carbon, moisture, available potassium, and pH, and those in the low-yield cores were shaped by pH, and nitrogen factors. Biolog Eco-plate data showed a more active microbial community in the high yield soil. The variations of enzymatic activities in the two soils were significantly explained by total nitrogen, total potassium, and moisture. The enzymatic variability in the low-yield soil was significantly explained by potassium, available nitrogen, pH, and total carbon, and that in the high-yield soil was partially explained by potassium and moisture. We found the relative abundances of Gram-negative bacteria and Actinomycetes partially explained the spatial and temporal variations of soil enzymatic activities, respectively. The high-yield soil microbes are probably more active to modulate soil fertility for rice production.

  13. Microbial communities play important roles in modulating paddy soil fertility

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Luo, Xuesong; Fu, Xiaoqian; Yang, Yun; Cai, Peng; Peng, Shaobing; Chen, Wenli; Huang, Qiaoyun

    2016-02-01

    We studied microbial communities in two paddy soils, which did not receive nitrogen fertilization and were distinguished by the soil properties. The two microbial communities differed in the relative abundance of gram-negative bacteria and total microbial biomass. Variability in microbial communities between the two fields was related to the levels of phosphorus and soil moisture. Redundancy analysis for individual soils showed that the bacterial community dynamics in the high-yield soil were significantly correlated with total carbon, moisture, available potassium, and pH, and those in the low-yield cores were shaped by pH, and nitrogen factors. Biolog Eco-plate data showed a more active microbial community in the high yield soil. The variations of enzymatic activities in the two soils were significantly explained by total nitrogen, total potassium, and moisture. The enzymatic variability in the low-yield soil was significantly explained by potassium, available nitrogen, pH, and total carbon, and that in the high-yield soil was partially explained by potassium and moisture. We found the relative abundances of Gram-negative bacteria and Actinomycetes partially explained the spatial and temporal variations of soil enzymatic activities, respectively. The high-yield soil microbes are probably more active to modulate soil fertility for rice production.

  14. Microbial communities play important roles in modulating paddy soil fertility

    PubMed Central

    Luo, Xuesong; Fu, Xiaoqian; Yang, Yun; Cai, Peng; Peng, Shaobing; Chen, Wenli; Huang, Qiaoyun

    2016-01-01

    We studied microbial communities in two paddy soils, which did not receive nitrogen fertilization and were distinguished by the soil properties. The two microbial communities differed in the relative abundance of gram-negative bacteria and total microbial biomass. Variability in microbial communities between the two fields was related to the levels of phosphorus and soil moisture. Redundancy analysis for individual soils showed that the bacterial community dynamics in the high-yield soil were significantly correlated with total carbon, moisture, available potassium, and pH, and those in the low-yield cores were shaped by pH, and nitrogen factors. Biolog Eco-plate data showed a more active microbial community in the high yield soil. The variations of enzymatic activities in the two soils were significantly explained by total nitrogen, total potassium, and moisture. The enzymatic variability in the low-yield soil was significantly explained by potassium, available nitrogen, pH, and total carbon, and that in the high-yield soil was partially explained by potassium and moisture. We found the relative abundances of Gram-negative bacteria and Actinomycetes partially explained the spatial and temporal variations of soil enzymatic activities, respectively. The high-yield soil microbes are probably more active to modulate soil fertility for rice production. PMID:26841839

  15. Microbial community degradation of widely used quaternary ammonium disinfectants.

    PubMed

    Oh, Seungdae; Kurt, Zohre; Tsementzi, Despina; Weigand, Michael R; Kim, Minjae; Hatt, Janet K; Tandukar, Madan; Pavlostathis, Spyros G; Spain, Jim C; Konstantinidis, Konstantinos T

    2014-10-01

    Benzalkonium chlorides (BACs) are disinfectants widely used in a variety of clinical and environmental settings to prevent microbial infections, and they are frequently detected in nontarget environments, such as aquatic and engineered biological systems, even at toxic levels. Therefore, microbial degradation of BACs has important ramifications for alleviating disinfectant toxicity in nontarget environments as well as compromising disinfectant efficacy in target environments. However, how natural microbial communities respond to BAC exposure and what genes underlie BAC biodegradation remain elusive. Our previous metagenomic analysis of a river sediment microbial community revealed that BAC exposure selected for a low-diversity community, dominated by several members of the Pseudomonas genus that quickly degraded BACs. To elucidate the genetic determinants of BAC degradation, we conducted time-series metatranscriptomic analysis of this microbial community during a complete feeding cycle with BACs as the sole carbon and energy source under aerobic conditions. Metatranscriptomic profiles revealed a candidate gene for BAC dealkylation, the first step in BAC biodegradation that results in a product 500 times less toxic. Subsequent biochemical assays and isolate characterization verified that the putative amine oxidase gene product was functionally capable of initiating BAC degradation. Our analysis also revealed cooperative interactions among community members to alleviate BAC toxicity, such as the further degradation of BAC dealkylation by-products by organisms not encoding amine oxidase. Collectively, our results advance the understanding of BAC aerobic biodegradation and provide genetic biomarkers to assess the critical first step of this process in nontarget environments.

  16. Microbial community redundancy in anaerobic digestion drives process recovery after salinity exposure.

    PubMed

    De Vrieze, Jo; Christiaens, Marlies E R; Walraedt, Diego; Devooght, Arno; Ijaz, Umer Zeeshan; Boon, Nico

    2017-03-15

    Anaerobic digestion of high-salinity wastewaters often results in process inhibition due to the susceptibility of the methanogenic archaea. The ability of the microbial community to deal with increased salinity levels is of high importance to ensure process perseverance or recovery after failure. The exact strategy of the microbial community to ensure process endurance is, however, often unknown. In this study, we investigated how the microbial community is able to recover process performance following a disturbance through the application of high-salinity molasses wastewater. After a stable start-up, methane production quickly decreased from 625 ± 17 to 232 ± 35 mL CH4 L(-1) d(-1) with a simultaneous accumulation in volatile fatty acids up to 20.5 ± 1.4 g COD L(-1), indicating severe process disturbance. A shift in feedstock from molasses wastewater to waste activated sludge resulted in complete process recovery. However, the bacterial and archaeal communities did not return to their original composition as before the disturbance, despite similar process conditions. Microbial community diversity was recovered to similar levels as before disturbance, which indicates that the metabolic potential of the community was maintained. A mild increase in ammonia concentration after process recovery did not influence methane production, indicating a well-balanced microbial community. Hence, given the change in community composition following recovery after salinity disturbance, it can be assumed that microbial community redundancy was the major strategy to ensure the continuation of methane production, without loss of functionality or metabolic flexibility.

  17. Microbial inoculants and their impact on soil microbial communities: a review.

    PubMed

    Trabelsi, Darine; Mhamdi, Ridha

    2013-01-01

    The knowledge of the survival of inoculated fungal and bacterial strains in field and the effects of their release on the indigenous microbial communities has been of great interest since the practical use of selected natural or genetically modified microorganisms has been developed. Soil inoculation or seed bacterization may lead to changes in the structure of the indigenous microbial communities, which is important with regard to the safety of introduction of microbes into the environment. Many reports indicate that application of microbial inoculants can influence, at least temporarily, the resident microbial communities. However, the major concern remains regarding how the impact on taxonomic groups can be related to effects on functional capabilities of the soil microbial communities. These changes could be the result of direct effects resulting from trophic competitions and antagonistic/synergic interactions with the resident microbial populations, or indirect effects mediated by enhanced root growth and exudation. Combination of inoculants will not necessarily produce an additive or synergic effect, but rather a competitive process. The extent of the inoculation impact on the subsequent crops in relation to the buffering capacity of the plant-soil-biota is still not well documented and should be the focus of future research.

  18. Microbial Inoculants and Their Impact on Soil Microbial Communities: A Review

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    The knowledge of the survival of inoculated fungal and bacterial strains in field and the effects of their release on the indigenous microbial communities has been of great interest since the practical use of selected natural or genetically modified microorganisms has been developed. Soil inoculation or seed bacterization may lead to changes in the structure of the indigenous microbial communities, which is important with regard to the safety of introduction of microbes into the environment. Many reports indicate that application of microbial inoculants can influence, at least temporarily, the resident microbial communities. However, the major concern remains regarding how the impact on taxonomic groups can be related to effects on functional capabilities of the soil microbial communities. These changes could be the result of direct effects resulting from trophic competitions and antagonistic/synergic interactions with the resident microbial populations, or indirect effects mediated by enhanced root growth and exudation. Combination of inoculants will not necessarily produce an additive or synergic effect, but rather a competitive process. The extent of the inoculation impact on the subsequent crops in relation to the buffering capacity of the plant-soil-biota is still not well documented and should be the focus of future research. PMID:23957006

  19. Microbial communities associated with house dust.

    PubMed

    Rintala, Helena; Pitkäranta, Miia; Täubel, Martin

    2012-01-01

    House dust is a complex mixture of inorganic and organic material with microbes in abundance. Few microbial species are actually able to grow and proliferate in dust and only if enough moisture is provided. Hence, most of the microbial content originates from sources other than the dust itself. The most important sources of microbes in house dust are outdoor air and other outdoor material tracked into the buildings, occupants of the buildings including pets and microbial growth on moist construction materials. Based on numerous cultivation studies, Penicillium, Aspergillus, Cladosporium, and about 20 other fungal genera are the most commonly isolated genera from house dust. The cultivable bacterial flora is dominated by Gram-positive genera, such as Staplylococcus, Corynebacterium, and Lactococcus. Culture-independent studies have shown that both the fungal and the bacterial flora are far more diverse, with estimates of up to 500-1000 different species being present in house dust. Concentrations of microbes in house dust vary from nondetectable to 10(9) cells g(-1) dust, depending on the dust type, detection method, type of the indoor environment and season, among other factors. Microbial assemblages in different house dust types usually share the same core species; however, alterations in the composition are caused by differing sources of microbes for different dust types. For example, mattress dust is dominated by species originating from the user of the mattress, whereas floor dust reflects rather outdoor sources. Farming homes contain higher microbial load than urban homes and according to a recent study, temperate climate zones show higher dust microbial diversity than tropical zones.

  20. Temperature sensitivity of soil respiration rates enhanced by microbial community response.

    PubMed

    Karhu, Kristiina; Auffret, Marc D; Dungait, Jennifer A J; Hopkins, David W; Prosser, James I; Singh, Brajesh K; Subke, Jens-Arne; Wookey, Philip A; Agren, Göran I; Sebastià, Maria-Teresa; Gouriveau, Fabrice; Bergkvist, Göran; Meir, Patrick; Nottingham, Andrew T; Salinas, Norma; Hartley, Iain P

    2014-09-04

    Soils store about four times as much carbon as plant biomass, and soil microbial respiration releases about 60 petagrams of carbon per year to the atmosphere as carbon dioxide. Short-term experiments have shown that soil microbial respiration increases exponentially with temperature. This information has been incorporated into soil carbon and Earth-system models, which suggest that warming-induced increases in carbon dioxide release from soils represent an important positive feedback loop that could influence twenty-first-century climate change. The magnitude of this feedback remains uncertain, however, not least because the response of soil microbial communities to changing temperatures has the potential to either decrease or increase warming-induced carbon losses substantially. Here we collect soils from different ecosystems along a climate gradient from the Arctic to the Amazon and investigate how microbial community-level responses control the temperature sensitivity of soil respiration. We find that the microbial community-level response more often enhances than reduces the mid- to long-term (90 days) temperature sensitivity of respiration. Furthermore, the strongest enhancing responses were observed in soils with high carbon-to-nitrogen ratios and in soils from cold climatic regions. After 90 days, microbial community responses increased the temperature sensitivity of respiration in high-latitude soils by a factor of 1.4 compared to the instantaneous temperature response. This suggests that the substantial carbon stores in Arctic and boreal soils could be more vulnerable to climate warming than currently predicted.

  1. The impact of zero-valent iron nanoparticles upon soil microbial communities is context dependent.

    PubMed

    Pawlett, Mark; Ritz, Karl; Dorey, Robert A; Rocks, Sophie; Ramsden, Jeremy; Harris, Jim A

    2013-02-01

    Nanosized zero-valent iron (nZVI) is an effective land remediation tool, but there remains little information regarding its impact upon and interactions with the soil microbial community. nZVI stabilised with sodium carboxymethyl cellulose was applied to soils of three contrasting textures and organic matter contents to determine impacts on soil microbial biomass, phenotypic (phospholipid fatty acid (PLFA)), and functional (multiple substrate-induced respiration (MSIR)) profiles. The nZVI significantly reduced microbial biomass by 29 % but only where soil was amended with 5 % straw. Effects of nZVI on MSIR profiles were only evident in the clay soils and were independent of organic matter content. PLFA profiling indicated that the soil microbial community structure in sandy soils were apparently the most, and clay soils the least, vulnerable to nZVI suggesting a protective effect imparted by clays. Evidence of nZVI bactericidal effects on Gram-negative bacteria and a potential reduction of arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi are presented. Data imply that the impact of nZVI on soil microbial communities is dependent on organic matter content and soil mineral type. Thereby, evaluations of nZVI toxicity on soil microbial communities should consider context. The reduction of AM fungi following nZVI application may have implications for land remediation.

  2. Colonization patterns of soil microbial communities in the Atacama Desert

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Background The Atacama Desert is one of the driest deserts in the world and its soil, with extremely low moisture, organic carbon content, and oxidizing conditions, is considered to be at the dry limit for life. Results Analyses of high throughput DNA sequence data revealed that bacterial communities from six geographic locations in the hyper-arid core and along a North-South moisture gradient were structurally and phylogenetically distinct (ANOVA test for observed operating taxonomic units at 97% similarity (OTU0.03), P <0.001) and that communities from locations in the hyper-arid zone displayed the lowest levels of diversity. We found bacterial taxa similar to those found in other arid soil communities with an abundance of Rubrobacterales, Actinomycetales, Acidimicrobiales, and a number of families from the Thermoleophilia. The extremely low abundance of Firmicutes indicated that most bacteria in the soil were in the form of vegetative cells. Integrating molecular data with climate and soil geochemistry, we found that air relative humidity (RH) and soil conductivity significantly correlated with microbial communities’ diversity metrics (least squares linear regression for observed OTU0.03 and air RH and soil conductivity, P <0.001; UniFrac PCoA Spearman’s correlation for air RH and soil conductivity, P <0.0001), indicating that water availability and salt content are key factors in shaping the Atacama soil microbiome. Mineralization studies showed communities actively metabolizing in all soil samples, with increased rates in soils from the southern locations. Conclusions Our results suggest that microorganisms in the driest soils of the Atacama Desert are in a state of stasis for most of the time, but can potentially metabolize if presented with liquid water for a sufficient duration. Over geological time, rare rain events and physicochemical factors potentially played a major role in selecting micro-organisms that are most adapted to extreme desiccating

  3. Effects of shearing on biogas production and microbial community structure during anaerobic digestion with recuperative thickening.

    PubMed

    Yang, Shufan; Phan, Hop V; Bustamante, Heriberto; Guo, Wenshan; Ngo, Hao H; Nghiem, Long D

    2017-03-12

    Recuperative thickening can intensify anaerobic digestion to produce more biogas and potentially reduce biosolids odour. This study elucidates the effects of sludge shearing during the thickening process on the microbial community structure and its effect on biogas production. Medium shearing resulted in approximately 15% increase in biogas production. By contrast, excessive or high shearing led to a marked decrease in biogas production, possibly due to sludge disintegration and cell lysis. Microbial analysis using 16S rRNA gene amplicon sequencing showed that medium shearing increased the evenness and diversity of the microbial community in the anaerobic digester, which is consistent with the observed improved biogas production. By contrast, microbial diversity decreased under either excessive shearing or high shearing condition. In good agreement with the observed decrease in biogas production, the abundance of Bacteroidales and Syntrophobaterales (which are responsible for hydrolysis and acetogenesis) decreased due to high shearing during recuperative thickening.

  4. Next generation barcode tagged sequencing for monitoring microbial community dynamics.

    PubMed

    Breakwell, Katy; Tetu, Sasha G; Elbourne, Liam D H

    2014-01-01

    Microbial identification using 16S rDNA variable regions has become increasingly popular over the past decade. The application of next-generation amplicon sequencing to these regions allows microbial communities to be sequenced in far greater depth than previous techniques, as well as allowing for the identification of unculturable or rare organisms within a sample. Multiplexing can be used to sequence multiple samples in tandem through the use of sample-specific identification sequences which are attached to each amplicon, making this a cost-effective method for large-scale microbial identification experiments.

  5. Multilevel Samplers to Assess Microbial Community Response to Biostimulation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Baldwin, B. R.; McKinley, J. P.; Peacock, A. D.; Park, M.; Ogles, D.; Istok, J. D.; Resch, C. T.; White, D. C.

    2006-05-01

    Passive multilevel samplers (MLS) containing a solid matrix for microbial colonization were used in conjunction with a push-pull biostimulation experiment designed to promote biological U(VI) and Tc(VII) reduction. MLS were deployed at 24 elevations in the injection well and two down gradient wells to investigate the spatial variability in microbial community composition and growth prior to and following biostimulation. The microbial community was characterized by real-time PCR (Q-PCR) quantification of eubacteria, NO3- reducing bacteria (nirS and nirK), δ-proteobacteria, Geobacter sp., and methanogens (mcrA). Pretest cell densities were low overall but varied substantially with significantly greater eubacterial populations detected at circumneutral pH (T-test, α=0.05) suggesting carbon substrate and low pH limitation of microbial activity. Although pretest cell densities were low, denitrifying bacteria were dominant members of the microbial community. Biostimulation with an ethanol amended groundwater resulted in concurrent NO3- and Tc(VII) reduction followed by U(VI) reduction. Q-PCR analysis of MLS revealed significant (1-2 orders of magnitude, T-test, α=0.05) increases in cell densities of eubacteria, denitrifiers, δ- proteobacteria, Geobacter sp., and methanogens in response to biostimulation. Traditionally characterization of sediment samples has been used to investigate the microbial community response to biostimulation, however, collection of sediment samples is expensive and not conducive to deep aquifers or temporal studies. The results presented demonstrate that push-pull tests with passive MLS provide an inexpensive approach to determine the effect of biostimulation on contaminant concentrations, geochemical conditions, and the microbial community composition and function.

  6. Inferring Intra-Community Microbial Interaction Patterns from Metagenomic Datasets Using Associative Rule Mining Techniques.

    PubMed

    Tandon, Disha; Haque, Mohammed Monzoorul; Mande, Sharmila S

    2016-01-01

    The nature of inter-microbial metabolic interactions defines the stability of microbial communities residing in any ecological niche. Deciphering these interaction patterns is crucial for understanding the mode/mechanism(s) through which an individual microbial community transitions from one state to another (e.g. from a healthy to a diseased state). Statistical correlation techniques have been traditionally employed for mining microbial interaction patterns from taxonomic abundance data corresponding to a given microbial community. In spite of their efficiency, these correlation techniques can capture only 'pair-wise interactions'. Moreover, their emphasis on statistical significance can potentially result in missing out on several interactions that are relevant from a biological standpoint. This study explores the applicability of one of the earliest association rule mining algorithm i.e. the 'Apriori algorithm' for deriving 'microbial association rules' from the taxonomic profile of given microbial community. The classical Apriori approach derives association rules by analysing patterns of co-occurrence/co-exclusion between various '(subsets of) features/items' across various samples. Using real-world microbiome data, the efficiency/utility of this rule mining approach in deciphering multiple (biologically meaningful) association patterns between 'subsets/subgroups' of microbes (constituting microbiome samples) is demonstrated. As an example, association rules derived from publicly available gut microbiome datasets indicate an association between a group of microbes (Faecalibacterium, Dorea, and Blautia) that are known to have mutualistic metabolic associations among themselves. Application of the rule mining approach on gut microbiomes (sourced from the Human Microbiome Project) further indicated similar microbial association patterns in gut microbiomes irrespective of the gender of the subjects. A Linux implementation of the Association Rule Mining (ARM

  7. Inferring Intra-Community Microbial Interaction Patterns from Metagenomic Datasets Using Associative Rule Mining Techniques

    PubMed Central

    Mande, Sharmila S.

    2016-01-01

    The nature of inter-microbial metabolic interactions defines the stability of microbial communities residing in any ecological niche. Deciphering these interaction patterns is crucial for understanding the mode/mechanism(s) through which an individual microbial community transitions from one state to another (e.g. from a healthy to a diseased state). Statistical correlation techniques have been traditionally employed for mining microbial interaction patterns from taxonomic abundance data corresponding to a given microbial community. In spite of their efficiency, these correlation techniques can capture only 'pair-wise interactions'. Moreover, their emphasis on statistical significance can potentially result in missing out on several interactions that are relevant from a biological standpoint. This study explores the applicability of one of the earliest association rule mining algorithm i.e. the 'Apriori algorithm' for deriving 'microbial association rules' from the taxonomic profile of given microbial community. The classical Apriori approach derives association rules by analysing patterns of co-occurrence/co-exclusion between various '(subsets of) features/items' across various samples. Using real-world microbiome data, the efficiency/utility of this rule mining approach in deciphering multiple (biologically meaningful) association patterns between 'subsets/subgroups' of microbes (constituting microbiome samples) is demonstrated. As an example, association rules derived from publicly available gut microbiome datasets indicate an association between a group of microbes (Faecalibacterium, Dorea, and Blautia) that are known to have mutualistic metabolic associations among themselves. Application of the rule mining approach on gut microbiomes (sourced from the Human Microbiome Project) further indicated similar microbial association patterns in gut microbiomes irrespective of the gender of the subjects. A Linux implementation of the Association Rule Mining (ARM

  8. Evolutionary relationships of wild hominids recapitulated by gut microbial communities.

    PubMed

    Ochman, Howard; Worobey, Michael; Kuo, Chih-Horng; Ndjango, Jean-Bosco N; Peeters, Martine; Hahn, Beatrice H; Hugenholtz, Philip

    2010-11-16

    Multiple factors over the lifetime of an individual, including diet, geography, and physiologic state, will influence the microbial communities within the primate gut. To determine the source of variation in the composition of the microbiota within and among species, we investigated the distal gut microbial communities harbored by great apes, as present in fecal samples recovered within their native ranges. We found that the branching order of host-species phylogenies based on the composition of these microbial communities is completely congruent with the known relationships of the hosts. Although the gut is initially and continuously seeded by bacteria that are acquired from external sources, we establish that over evolutionary timescales, the composition of the gut microbiota among great ape species is phylogenetically conserved and has diverged in a manner consistent with vertical inheritance.

  9. Soil microbial communities are shaped by plant-driven changes in resource availability during secondary succession.

    PubMed

    Cline, Lauren C; Zak, Donald R

    2015-12-01

    Although we understand the ecological processes eliciting changes in plant community composition during secondary succession, we do not understand whether co-occurring changes in plant detritus shape saprotrophic microbial communities in soil. In this study, we investigated soil microbial composition and function across an old-field chronosequence ranging from 16 to 86 years following agricultural abandonment, as well as three forests representing potential late-successional ecosystems. Fungal and bacterial community composition was quantified from ribosomal DNA, and insight into the functional potential of the microbial community to decay plant litter was gained from shotgun metagenomics and extracellular enzyme assays. Accumulation of soil organic matter across the chronosequence exerted a positive and significant effect on fungal phylogenetic β-diversity and the activity of extracellular enzymes with lignocellulolytic activity. In addition, the increasing abundance of lignin-rich C4 grasses was positively related to the composition of fungal genes with lignocellulolytic function, thereby linking plant community composition, litter biochemistry, and microbial community function. However, edaphic properties were the primary agent shaping bacterial communities, as bacterial β-diversity and variation in functional gene composition displayed a significant and positive relationship to soil pH across the chronosequence. The late-successional forests were compositionally distinct from the oldest old fields, indicating that substantial changes occur in soil microbial communities as old fields give way to forests. Taken together, our observations demonstrate that plants govern the turnover of soil fungal communities and functional characteristics during secondary succession, due to the continual input of detritus and differences in litter biochemistry among plant species.

  10. Anodic and cathodic microbial communities in single chamber microbial fuel cells.

    PubMed

    Daghio, Matteo; Gandolfi, Isabella; Bestetti, Giuseppina; Franzetti, Andrea; Guerrini, Edoardo; Cristiani, Pierangela

    2015-01-25

    Microbial fuel cells (MFCs) are a rapidly growing technology for energy production from wastewater and biomasses. In a MFC, a microbial biofilm oxidizes organic matter and transfers electrons from reduced compounds to an anode as the electron acceptor by extracellular electron transfer (EET). The aim of this work was to characterize the microbial communities operating in a Single Chamber Microbial Fuel Cell (SCMFC) fed with acetate and inoculated with a biogas digestate in order to gain more insight into anodic and cathodic EET. Taxonomic characterization of the communities was carried out by Illumina sequencing of a fragment of the 16S rRNA gene. Microorganisms belonging to Geovibrio genus and purple non-sulfur (PNS) bacteria were found to be dominant in the anodic biofilm. The alkaliphilic genus Nitrincola and anaerobic microorganisms belonging to Porphyromonadaceae family were the most abundant bacteria in the cathodic biofilm.

  11. Linking Microbial Community Structure to Function in Representative Simulated Systems

    PubMed Central

    Marcus, Ian M.; Wilder, Hailey A.; Quazi, Shanin J.

    2013-01-01

    Pathogenic bacteria are generally studied as a single strain under ideal growing conditions, although these conditions are not the norm in the environments in which pathogens typically proliferate. In this investigation, a representative microbial community along with Escherichia coli O157:H7, a model pathogen, was studied in three environments in which such a pathogen could be found: a human colon, a septic tank, and groundwater. Each of these systems was built in the lab in order to retain the physical/chemical and microbial complexity of the environments while maintaining control of the feed into the models. The microbial community in the colon was found to have a high percentage of bacteriodetes and firmicutes, while the septic tank and groundwater systems were composed mostly of proteobacteria. The introduction of E. coli O157:H7 into the simulated systems elicited a shift in the structures and phenotypic cell characteristics of the microbial communities. The fate and transport of the microbial community with E. coli O157:H7 were found to be significantly different from those of E. coli O157:H7 studied as a single isolate, suggesting that the behavior of the organism in the environment was different from that previously conceived. The findings in this study clearly suggest that to gain insight into the fate of pathogens, cells should be grown and analyzed under conditions simulating those of the environment in which the pathogens are present. PMID:23396331

  12. Coupling Spatiotemporal Community Assembly Processes to Changes in Microbial Metabolism

    PubMed Central

    Graham, Emily B.; Crump, Alex R.; Resch, Charles T.; Fansler, Sarah; Arntzen, Evan; Kennedy, David W.; Fredrickson, Jim K.; Stegen, James C.

    2016-01-01

    Community assembly processes generate shifts in species abundances that influence ecosystem cycling of carbon and nutrients, yet our understanding of assembly remains largely separate from ecosystem-level functioning. Here, we investigate relationships between assembly and changes in microbial metabolism across space and time in hyporheic microbial communities. We pair sampling of two habitat types (i.e., attached and planktonic) through seasonal and sub-hourly hydrologic fluctuation with null modeling and temporally explicit multivariate statistics. We demonstrate that multiple selective pressures—imposed by sediment and porewater physicochemistry—integrate to generate changes in microbial community composition at distinct timescales among habitat types. These changes in composition are reflective of contrasting associations of Betaproteobacteria and Thaumarchaeota with ecological selection and with seasonal changes in microbial metabolism. We present a conceptual model based on our results in which metabolism increases when oscillating selective pressures oppose temporally stable selective pressures. Our conceptual model is pertinent to both macrobial and microbial systems experiencing multiple selective pressures and presents an avenue for assimilating community assembly processes into predictions of ecosystem-level functioning. PMID:28123379

  13. Non-destructive sampling of rock-dwelling microbial communities using sterile adhesive tape.

    PubMed

    Cutler, Nick A; Oliver, Anna E; Viles, Heather A; Whiteley, Andrew S

    2012-12-01

    Building stone provides a habitat for an array of microorganisms, many of which have been demonstrated to have a deleterious effect on the appearance and/or structural integrity of stone masonry. It is essential to understand the composition and structure of stone-dwelling (lithobiontic) microbial communities if successful stone conservation strategies are to be applied, particularly in the face of global environmental change. Ideally, the techniques used to sample such assemblages should be non-destructive due to the sensitive conservation status of many stone buildings. This paper quantitatively assesses the performance of sterile adhesive tape as a non-destructive sampling technique and compares the results of tape sampling with an alternative, destructive, sampling method. We used DNA fingerprinting (TRFLP) to characterise the algal, fungal and bacterial communities living on a stone slab. Our results demonstrate that tape sampling may be used to collect viable quantities of microbial DNA from environmental samples. This technique is ideally suited to the sampling of microbial biofilms, particularly when these communities are dominated by green algae. It provides a good approximation of total community diversity (i.e. the aggregate diversity of epilithic and endolithic communities). Tape sampling is straightforward, rapid and cost effective. When combined with molecular analytical techniques, this sampling method has the potential to make a major contribution to efforts to understand the structure of lithobiontic microbial communities and our ability to predict the response of such communities to future environmental change.

  14. Phylogenetic & Physiological Profiling of Microbial Communities of Contaminated Soils/Sediments: Identifying Microbial consortia...

    SciTech Connect

    Terence L. Marsh

    2004-05-26

    The goals of this study were: (1) survey the microbial community in soil samples from a site contaminated with heavy metals using new rapid molecular techniques that are culture-independent; (2) identify phylogenetic signatures of microbial populations that correlate with metal ion contamination; and (3) cultivate these diagnostic strains using traditional as well as novel cultivation techniques in order to identify organisms that may be of value in site evaluation/management or bioremediation.

  15. Habitat generalists and specialists in microbial communities across a terrestrial-freshwater gradient

    PubMed Central

    Monard, C.; Gantner, S.; Bertilsson, S.; Hallin, S.; Stenlid, J.

    2016-01-01

    Observations of distributions of microorganisms and their differences in community composition across habitats provide evidence of biogeographical patterns. However, little is known about the processes controlling transfers across habitat gradients. By analysing the overall microbial community composition (bacteria, fungi, archaea) across a terrestrial-freshwater gradient, the aim of this study was to understand the spatial distribution patterns of populations and identify taxa capable of crossing biome borders. Barcoded 454 pyrosequencing of taxonomic gene markers was used to describe the microbial communities in adjacent soil, freshwater and sediment samples and study the role of biotic and spatial factors in shaping their composition. Few habitat generalists but a high number of specialists were detected indicating that microbial community composition was mainly regulated by species sorting and niche partitioning. Biotic interactions within microbial groups based on an association network underlined the importance of Actinobacteria, Sordariomycetes, Agaricomycetes and Nitrososphaerales in connecting among biomes. Even if dispersion seemed limited, the shore of the lake represented a transition area, allowing populations to cross the biome boundaries. In finding few broadly distributed populations, our study points to biome specialization within microbial communities with limited potential for dispersal and colonization of new habitats along the terrestrial-freshwater continuum. PMID:27886241

  16. Nitrogen fixation in microbial mat and stromatolite communities from Cuatro Cienegas, Mexico.

    PubMed

    Falcón, L I; Cerritos, R; Eguiarte, L E; Souza, V

    2007-08-01

    Nitrogen fixation (nitrogenase activity, NA) of a microbial mat and a living stromatolite from Cuatro Cienegas, Mexico, was examined over spring, summer, and winter of 2004. The goal of the study was to characterize the diazotrophic community through molecular analysis of the nifH gene and using inhibitors of sulfate reduction and oxygenic and anoxygenic photosynthesis. We also evaluated the role of ultraviolet radiation on the diazotrophic activity of the microbial communities. Both microbial communities showed patterns of NA with maximum rates during the day that decreased significantly with 3-3,4-dichlorophenyl-1',1'-dimethylurea, suggesting the potential importance of heterocystous cyanobacteria. There is also evidence of NA by sulfur-reducing bacteria in both microbial communities suggested by the negative effect exerted by the addition of sodium molybdate. Elimination of infrared and ultraviolet radiation had no effect on NA. Both microbial communities had nifH sequences that related to group I, including cyanobacteria and purple sulfur and nonsulfur bacteria, as well as group II nitrogenases, including sulfur reducing and green sulfur bacteria.

  17. Variability in microbial community composition and function between different niches within a coral reef.

    PubMed

    Tout, Jessica; Jeffries, Thomas C; Webster, Nicole S; Stocker, Roman; Ralph, Peter J; Seymour, Justin R

    2014-04-01

    To explore how microbial community composition and function varies within a coral reef ecosystem, we performed metagenomic sequencing of seawater from four niches across Heron Island Reef, within the Great Barrier Reef. Metagenomes were sequenced from seawater samples associated with (1) the surface of the coral species Acropora palifera, (2) the surface of the coral species Acropora aspera, (3) the sandy substrate within the reef lagoon and (4) open water, outside of the reef crest. Microbial composition and metabolic function differed substantially between the four niches. The taxonomic profile showed a clear shift from an oligotroph-dominated community (e.g. SAR11, Prochlorococcus, Synechococcus) in the open water and sandy substrate niches, to a community characterised by an increased frequency of copiotrophic bacteria (e.g. Vibrio, Pseudoalteromonas, Alteromonas) in the coral seawater niches. The metabolic potential of the four microbial assemblages also displayed significant differences, with the open water and sandy substrate niches dominated by genes associated with core house-keeping processes such as amino acid, carbohydrate and protein metabolism as well as DNA and RNA synthesis and metabolism. In contrast, the coral surface seawater metagenomes had an enhanced frequency of genes associated with dynamic processes including motility and chemotaxis, regulation and cell signalling. These findings demonstrate that the composition and function of microbial communities are highly variable between niches within coral reef ecosystems and that coral reefs host heterogeneous microbial communities that are likely shaped by habitat structure, presence of animal hosts and local biogeochemical conditions.

  18. Habitat generalists and specialists in microbial communities across a terrestrial-freshwater gradient

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Monard, C.; Gantner, S.; Bertilsson, S.; Hallin, S.; Stenlid, J.

    2016-11-01

    Observations of distributions of microorganisms and their differences in community composition across habitats provide evidence of biogeographical patterns. However, little is known about the processes controlling transfers across habitat gradients. By analysing the overall microbial community composition (bacteria, fungi, archaea) across a terrestrial-freshwater gradient, the aim of this study was to understand the spatial distribution patterns of populations and identify taxa capable of crossing biome borders. Barcoded 454 pyrosequencing of taxonomic gene markers was used to describe the microbial communities in adjacent soil, freshwater and sediment samples and study the role of biotic and spatial factors in shaping their composition. Few habitat generalists but a high number of specialists were detected indicating that microbial community composition was mainly regulated by species sorting and niche partitioning. Biotic interactions within microbial groups based on an association network underlined the importance of Actinobacteria, Sordariomycetes, Agaricomycetes and Nitrososphaerales in connecting among biomes. Even if dispersion seemed limited, the shore of the lake represented a transition area, allowing populations to cross the biome boundaries. In finding few broadly distributed populations, our study points to biome specialization within microbial communities with limited potential for dispersal and colonization of new habitats along the terrestrial-freshwater continuum.

  19. Temporal and spatial constraints on community assembly during microbial colonization of wood in seawater

    PubMed Central

    Kalenitchenko, Dimitri; Fagervold, Sonja K; Pruski, Audrey M; Vétion, Gilles; Yücel, Mustafa; Le Bris, Nadine; Galand, Pierre E

    2015-01-01

    Wood falls on the ocean floor form chemosynthetic ecosystems that remain poorly studied compared with features such as hydrothermal vents or whale falls. In particular, the microbes forming the base of this unique ecosystem are not well characterized and the ecology of communities is not known. Here we use wood as a model to study microorganisms that establish and maintain a chemosynthetic ecosystem. We conducted both aquaria and in situ deep-sea experiments to test how different environmental constraints structure the assembly of bacterial, archaeal and fungal communities. We also measured changes in wood lipid concentrations and monitored sulfide production as a way to detect potential microbial activity. We show that wood falls are dynamic ecosystems with high spatial and temporal community turnover, and that the patterns of microbial colonization change depending on the scale of observation. The most illustrative example was the difference observed between pine and oak wood community dynamics. In pine, communities changed spatially, with strong differences in community composition between wood microhabitats, whereas in oak, communities changed more significantly with time of incubation. Changes in community assembly were reflected by changes in phylogenetic diversity that could be interpreted as shifts between assemblies ruled by species sorting to assemblies structured by competitive exclusion. These ecological interactions followed the dynamics of the potential microbial metabolisms accompanying wood degradation in the sea. Our work showed that wood is a good model for creating and manipulating chemosynthetic ecosystems in the laboratory, and attracting not only typical chemosynthetic microbes but also emblematic macrofaunal species. PMID:25885564

  20. Temporal and spatial constraints on community assembly during microbial colonization of wood in seawater.

    PubMed

    Kalenitchenko, Dimitri; Fagervold, Sonja K; Pruski, Audrey M; Vétion, Gilles; Yücel, Mustafa; Le Bris, Nadine; Galand, Pierre E

    2015-12-01

    Wood falls on the ocean floor form chemosynthetic ecosystems that remain poorly studied compared with features such as hydrothermal vents or whale falls. In particular, the microbes forming the base of this unique ecosystem are not well characterized and the ecology of communities is not known. Here we use wood as a model to study microorganisms that establish and maintain a chemosynthetic ecosystem. We conducted both aquaria and in situ deep-sea experiments to test how different environmental constraints structure the assembly of bacterial, archaeal and fungal communities. We also measured changes in wood lipid concentrations and monitored sulfide production as a way to detect potential microbial activity. We show that wood falls are dynamic ecosystems with high spatial and temporal community turnover, and that the patterns of microbial colonization change depending on the scale of observation. The most illustrative example was the difference observed between pine and oak wood community dynamics. In pine, communities changed spatially, with strong differences in community composition between wood microhabitats, whereas in oak, communities changed more significantly with time of incubation. Changes in community assembly were reflected by changes in phylogenetic diversity that could be interpreted as shifts between assemblies ruled by species sorting to assemblies structured by competitive exclusion. These ecological interactions followed the dynamics of the potential microbial metabolisms accompanying wood degradation in the sea. Our work showed that wood is a good model for creating and manipulating chemosynthetic ecosystems in the laboratory, and attracting not only typical chemosynthetic microbes but also emblematic macrofaunal species.

  1. Biotransformation of herbicides by aquatic microbial communities associated to submerged leaves.

    PubMed

    Carles, Louis; Rossi, Florent; Joly, Muriel; Besse-Hoggan, Pascale; Batisson, Isabelle; Artigas, Joan

    2017-02-01

    Leaf microbial communities possess a large panel of enzymes permitting the breakdown of leaf polymers as well as the transformation of organic xenobiotic compounds present in stream waters. This study aims to assess the potential of leaf microbial communities, exhibiting different exposure histories to pesticides (upstream versus downstream), to biotransform three maize herbicides (mesotrione, S-metolachlor, and nicosulfuron) in single and cocktail molecule exposures. The results showed a high dissipation of nicosulfuron (sulfonylurea herbicide) (from 29.1 ± 10.8% to 66 ± 16.2%, day 40) in both single and cocktail exposures, respectively, but not of mesotrione and S-metolachlor. The formation of nicosulfuron metabolites such as ASDM (2-(aminosulfonyl)-N,N-dimethyl-3-pyridinecarboxamide) and ADMP (2-amino-4,6-dimethoxypyrimidine) and the weak sorption (<0.4%) on the leaf matrix confirmed the transformation of this molecule by leaf microorganisms. In addition, the downstream communities showed a greater ability to transform nicosulfuron than the upstream communities suggesting that the exposure history to pesticides is an important parameter and can enhance the biotransformation potential of leaf microorganisms. After 40-day single exposure to nicosulfuron, the downstream communities were also those experiencing the greatest shifts in fungal and bacterial community diversity suggesting a potential adaptation of microorganisms to this herbicide. Our study emphasizes the importance of leaf microbial communities for herbicide biotransformation in polluted stream ecosystems where fungi could play a crucial role.

  2. Effects of soil organic matter properties and microbial community composition on enzyme activities in cryoturbated arctic soils.

    PubMed

    Schnecker, Jörg; Wild, Birgit; Hofhansl, Florian; Eloy Alves, Ricardo J; Bárta, Jiří; Capek, Petr; Fuchslueger, Lucia; Gentsch, Norman; Gittel, Antje; Guggenberger, Georg; Hofer, Angelika; Kienzl, Sandra; Knoltsch, Anna; Lashchinskiy, Nikolay; Mikutta, Robert; Santrůčková, Hana; Shibistova, Olga; Takriti, Mounir; Urich, Tim; Weltin, Georg; Richter, Andreas

    2014-01-01

    Enzyme-mediated decomposition of soil organic matter (SOM) is controlled, amongst other factors, by organic matter properties and by the microbial decomposer community present. Since microbial community composition and SOM properties are often interrelated and both change with soil depth, the drivers of enzymatic decomposition are hard to dissect. We investigated soils from three regions in the Siberian Arctic, where carbon rich topsoil material has been incorporated into the subsoil (cryoturbation). We took advantage of this subduction to test if SOM properties shape microbial community composition, and to identify controls of both on enzyme activities. We found that microbial community composition (estimated by phospholipid fatty acid analysis), was similar in cryoturbated material and in surrounding subsoil, although carbon and nitrogen contents were similar in cryoturbated material and topsoils. This suggests that the microbial community in cryoturbated material was not well adapted to SOM properties. We also measured three potential enzyme activities (cellobiohydrolase, leucine-amino-peptidase and phenoloxidase) and used structural equation models (SEMs) to identify direct and indirect drivers of the three enzyme activities. The models included microbial community composition, carbon and nitrogen contents, clay content, water content, and pH. Models for regular horizons, excluding cryoturbated material, showed that all enzyme activities were mainly controlled by carbon or nitrogen. Microbial community composition had no effect. In contrast, models for cryoturbated material showed that enzyme activities were also related to microbial community composition. The additional control of microbial community composition could have restrained enzyme activities and furthermore decomposition in general. The functional decoupling of SOM properties and microbial community composition might thus be one of the reasons for low decomposition rates and the persistence of 400 Gt

  3. Links between plant community composition, soil organic matter quality and microbial communities in contrasting tundra habitats.

    PubMed

    Eskelinen, Anu; Stark, Sari; Männistö, Minna

    2009-08-01

    Plant communities, soil organic matter and microbial communities are predicted to be interlinked and to exhibit concordant patterns along major environmental gradients. We investigated the relationships between plant functional type composition, soil organic matter quality and decomposer community composition, and how these are related to major environmental variation in non-acid and acid soils derived from calcareous versus siliceous bedrocks, respectively. We analysed vegetation, organic matter and microbial community compositions from five non-acidic and five acidic heath sites in alpine tundra in northern Europe. Sequential organic matter fractionation was used to characterize organic matter quality and phospholipid fatty acid analysis to detect major variation in decomposer communities. Non-acidic and acidic heaths differed substantially in vegetation composition, and these disparities were associated with congruent shifts in soil organic matter and microbial communities. A high proportion of forbs in the vegetation was positively associated with low C:N and high soluble N:phenolics ratios in soil organic matter, and a high proportion of bacteria in the microbial community. On the contrary, dwarf shrub-rich vegetation was associated with high C:N and low soluble N:phenolics ratios, and a high proportion of fungi in the microbial community. Our study demonstrates a strong link between the plant community composition, soil organic matter quality, and microbial community composition, and that differences in one compartment are paralleled by changes in others. Variation in the forb-shrub gradient of vegetation may largely dictate variations in the chemical quality of organic matter and decomposer communities in tundra ecosystems. Soil pH, through its direct and indirect effects on plant and microbial communities, seems to function as an ultimate environmental driver that gives rise to and amplifies the interactions between above- and belowground systems.

  4. Manipulating soil microbial communities in extensive green roof substrates.

    PubMed

    Molineux, Chloe J; Connop, Stuart P; Gange, Alan C

    2014-09-15

    There has been very little investigation into the soil microbial community on green roofs, yet this below ground habitat is vital for ecosystem functioning. Green roofs are often harsh environments that would greatly benefit from having a healthy microbial system, allowing efficient nutrient cycling and a degree of drought tolerance in dry summer months. To test if green roof microbial communities could be manipulated, we added mycorrhizal fungi and a microbial mixture ('compost tea') to green roof rootzones, composed mainly of crushed brick or crushed concrete. The study revealed that growing media type and depth play a vital role in the microbial ecology of green roofs. There are complex relationships between depth and type of substrate and the biomass of different microbial groups, with no clear pattern being observed. Following the addition of inoculants, bacterial groups tended to increase in biomass in shallower substrates, whereas fungal biomass change was dependent on depth and type of substrate. Increased fungal biomass was found in shallow plots containing more crushed concrete and deeper plots containing more crushed brick where compost tea (a live mixture of beneficial bacteria) was added, perhaps due to the presence of helper bacteria for arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi (AMF). Often there was not an additive affect of the microbial inoculations but instead an antagonistic interaction between the added AM fungi and the compost tea. This suggests that some species of microbes may not be compatible with others, as competition for limited resources occurs within the various substrates. The overall results suggest that microbial inoculations of green roof habitats are sustainable. They need only be done once for increased biomass to be found in subsequent years, indicating that this is a novel and viable method of enhancing roof community composition.

  5. Biotechnological potential of microbial α-galactosidases.

    PubMed

    Katrolia, Priti; Rajashekhara, Eranna; Yan, Qiaojuan; Jiang, Zhengqiang

    2014-12-01

    The enzyme α-galactosidase (α-D-galactoside galactohydrolase; EC 3.2.1.22) catalyzes the hydrolysis of α-1,6-linked galactose residues in oligosaccharides and polymeric galactomannan. The α-galactosidases are of particular interest in view of their many potential biotechnological and medical applications. These enzymes have found wide use in various industries such as food and feed, sugar and paper and pulp for the removal of raffinose and stachyose. They are also important medically for blood group conversion and in the treatment of Fabry disease. Most of the research on α-galactosidases has focused on their isolation from various microbial sources. In the last decade, cloning of novel α-galactosidase genes and their heterologous expression has gained momentum. The present review focuses on the production of α-galactosidases from bacteria, fungi and yeast, and discusses their properties. Recent progress on cloning and heterologous expression in various hosts is summarized with special emphasis on their application in various fields.

  6. Localized electron transfer rates and microelectrode-based enrichment of microbial communities within a phototrophic microbial mat

    PubMed Central

    Babauta, Jerome T.; Atci, Erhan; Ha, Phuc T.; Lindemann, Stephen R.; Ewing, Timothy; Call, Douglas R.; Fredrickson, James K.; Beyenal, Haluk

    2014-01-01

    Phototrophic microbial mats frequently exhibit sharp, light-dependent redox gradients that regulate microbial respiration on specific electron acceptors as a function of depth. In this work, a benthic phototrophic microbial mat from Hot Lake, a hypersaline, epsomitic lake located near Oroville in north-central Washington, was used to develop a microscale electrochemical method to study local electron transfer processes within the mat. To characterize the physicochemical variables influencing electron transfer, we initially quantified redox potential, pH, and dissolved oxygen gradients by depth in the mat under photic and aphotic conditions. We further demonstrated that power output of a mat fuel cell was light-dependent. To study local electron transfer processes, we deployed a microscale electrode (microelectrode) with tip size ~20 μm. To enrich a subset of microorganisms capable of interacting with the microelectrode, we anodically polarized the microelectrode at depth in the mat. Subsequently, to characterize the microelectrode-associated community and compare it to the neighboring mat community, we performed amplicon sequencing of the V1–V3 region of the 16S gene. Differences in Bray-Curtis beta diversity, illustrated by large changes in relative abundance at the phylum level, suggested successful enrichment of specific mat community members on the microelectrode surface. The microelectrode-associated community exhibited substantially reduced alpha diversity and elevated relative abundances of Prosthecochloris, Loktanella, Catellibacterium, other unclassified members of Rhodobacteraceae, Thiomicrospira, and Limnobacter, compared with the community at an equivalent depth in the mat. Our results suggest that local electron transfer to an anodically polarized microelectrode selected for a specific microbial population, with substantially more abundance and diversity of sulfur-oxidizing phylotypes compared with the neighboring mat community. PMID:24478768

  7. Localized electron transfer rates and microelectrode-based enrichment of microbial communities within a phototrophic microbial mat

    SciTech Connect

    Babauta, Jerome T.; Atci, Erhan; Ha, Phuc T.; Lindemann, Stephen R.; Ewing, Timothy; Call, Douglas R.; Fredrickson, James K.; Beyenal, Haluk

    2014-01-01

    Phototrophic microbial mats frequently exhibit sharp, light-dependent redox gradients that regulate microbial respiration on specific electron acceptors as a function of depth. In this work, a benthic phototrophic microbial mat from Hot Lake, a hypersaline, epsomitic lake located near Oroville in north-central Washington, was used to develop a microscale electrochemical method to study local electron transfer processes within the mat. To characterize the physicochemical variables influencing electron transfer, we initially quantified redox potential, pH, and dissolved oxygen gradients by depth in the mat under photic and aphotic conditions. We further demonstrated that power output of a mat fuel cell was light-dependent. To study local electron transfer processes, we deployed a microscale electrode (microelectrode) with tip size ~20 μm. To enrich a subset of microorganisms capable of interacting with the microelectrode, we anodically polarized the microelectrode at depth in the mat. Subsequently, to characterize the microelectrode- associated community and compare it to the neighboring mat community, we performed amplicon sequencing of the V1-V3 region of the 16S gene. Differences in Bray-Curtis beta diversity, illustrated by large changes in relative abundance at the phylum level, suggested successful enrichment of specific mat community members on the microelectrode surface. The microelectrode-associated community exhibited substantially reduced alpha diversity and elevated relative abundances of Prosthecochloris, Loktanella, Catellibacterium, other unclassified members of Rhodobacteraceae, Thiomicrospira, and Limnobacter, compared with the community at an equivalent depth in the mat. Our results suggest that local electron transfer to an anodically polarized microelectrode selected for a specific microbial population, with substantially more abundance and diversity of sulfur-oxidizing phylotypes compared with the neighboring mat community.

  8. Microbial Community Composition in the Marine Sediments of Jeju Island: Next-Generation Sequencing Surveys.

    PubMed

    Choi, Heebok; Koh, Hyeon-Woo; Kim, Hongik; Chae, Jong-Chan; Park, Soo-Je

    2016-05-28

    Marine sediments are a microbial biosphere with an unknown physiology, and the sediments harbor numerous distinct phylogenetic lineages of Bacteria and Archaea that are at present uncultured. In this study, the structure of the archaeal and bacterial communities was investigated in the surface and subsurface sediments of Jeju Island using a next-generation sequencing method. The microbial communities in the surface sediments were distinct from those in the subsurface sediments; the relative abundance of sequences for Thaumarchaeota, Actinobacteria, Bacteroides, Alphaproteobacteria, and Gammaproteobacteria were higher in the surface than subsurface sediments, whereas the sequences for Euryarchaeota, Acidobacteria, Firmicutes, and Deltaproteobacteria were relatively more abundant in the subsurface than surface sediments. This study presents detailed characterization of the spatial distribution of benthic microbial communities of Jeju Island and provides fundamental information on the potential interactions mediated by microorganisms with the different biogeochemical cycles in coastal sediments.

  9. Composition of Microbial Communities in Blount Springs, Alabama and Assessment of their Chemolithotrophic Capabilities

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Morrissey, T.; Aharon, P.; Olson, J.

    2010-12-01

    Microbial assemblages consisting of chemolithotrophic organisms are found in extreme environments and provide clues as to how life forms survived the harsh conditions of early Earth. Diverse microbial communities were observed in a sulfur spring in Blount Springs, Blount Co., Alabama. DNA was extracted from microbial samples and amplified by polymerase chain reaction. Terminal restriction fragment length polymorphism community analysis was performed to determine the diversity of bacterial and fungal communities in the sulfur spring. Cation and anion concentrations within the spring water were also evaluated to determine the potential chemolithotrophic capabilities of the resident microbes. Carbon, hydrogen, and oxygen isotopes were evaluated to determine the carbon flow and the source of the water in the streams.

  10. Interpreting and designing microbial communities for bioprocess applications, from components to interactions to emergent properties

    SciTech Connect

    Beck, Ashley; Hunt, Kristopher; Bernstein, Hans C.; Carlson, Ross

    2016-01-20

    Interest in microbial communities for bioprocessing has surged in recent years based on the potential to optimize multiple tasks simultaneously and to enhance process productivity and stability. The presence and magnitude of these desirable system properties often result from interactions between functionally distinct community members. The importance of interactions, while appreciated by some disciplines for decades, has gained interest recently due to the development of ‘omics techniques, polymicrobial culturing approaches, and computational methods which has made the systems-level analysis of interacting components more tractable. This review defines and categorizes natural and engineered system components, interactions, and emergent properties, as well as presents three ecological theories relevant to microbial communities. Case studies are interpreted to illustrate components, interactions, emergent properties and agreement with theoretical concepts. A general foundation is laid to facilitate interpretation of current systems and to aid in future design of microbial systems for the next generation of bioprocesses.

  11. Molecular tools for investigating microbial community structure and function in oxygen-deficient marine waters.

    PubMed

    Hawley, Alyse K; Kheirandish, Sam; Mueller, Andreas; Leung, Hilary T C; Norbeck, Angela D; Brewer, Heather M; Pasa-Tolic, Ljiljana; Hallam, Steven J

    2013-01-01

    Water column oxygen (O2)-deficiency shapes food-web structure by progressively directing nutrients and energy away from higher trophic levels into microbial community metabolism resulting in fixed nitrogen loss and greenhouse gas production. Although respiratory O2 consumption during organic matter degradation is a natural outcome of a productive surface ocean, global-warming-induced stratification intensifies this process leading to oxygen minimum zone (OMZ) expansion. Here, we describe useful tools for detection and quantification of potential key microbial players and processes in OMZ community metabolism including quantitative polymerase chain reaction primers targeting Marine Group I Thaumarchaeota, SUP05, Arctic96BD-19, and SAR324 small-subunit ribosomal RNA genes and protein extraction methods from OMZ waters compatible with high-resolution mass spectrometry for profiling microbial community structure and functional dynamics.

  12. Ecological restoration alters microbial communities in mine tailings profiles

    PubMed Central

    Li, Yang; Jia, Zhongjun; Sun, Qingye; Zhan, Jing; Yang, Yang; Wang, Dan

    2016-01-01

    Ecological restoration of mine tailings have impact on soil physiochemical properties and microbial communities. The surface soil has been a primary concern in the past decades, however it remains poorly understood about the adaptive response of microbial communities along the profile during ecological restoration of the tailings. In this study, microbial communities along a 60-cm profile were investigated in a mine tailing pond during ecological restoration of the bare waste tailings (BW) with two vegetated soils of Imperata cylindrica (IC) and Chrysopogon zizanioides (CZ) plants. Revegetation of both IC and CZ could retard soil degradation of mine tailing by stimulation of soil pH at 0–30 cm soils and altered the bacterial communities at 0–20 cm depths of the mine tailings. Significant differences existed in the relative abundance of the phyla Alphaproteobacteria, Deltaproteobacteria, Acidobacteria, Firmicutes and Nitrospira. Slight difference of bacterial communities were found at 30–60 cm depths of mine tailings. Abundance and activity analysis of nifH genes also explained the elevated soil nitrogen contents at the surface 0–20 cm of the vegetated soils. These results suggest that microbial succession occurred primarily at surface tailings and vegetation of pioneering plants might have promoted ecological restoration of mine tailings. PMID:27126064

  13. Ecological restoration alters microbial communities in mine tailings profiles.

    PubMed

    Li, Yang; Jia, Zhongjun; Sun, Qingye; Zhan, Jing; Yang, Yang; Wang, Dan

    2016-04-29

    Ecological restoration of mine tailings have impact on soil physiochemical properties and microbial communities. The surface soil has been a primary concern in the past decades, however it remains poorly understood about the adaptive response of microbial communities along the profile during ecological restoration of the tailings. In this study, microbial communities along a 60-cm profile were investigated in a mine tailing pond during ecological restoration of the bare waste tailings (BW) with two vegetated soils of Imperata cylindrica (IC) and Chrysopogon zizanioides (CZ) plants. Revegetation of both IC and CZ could retard soil degradation of mine tailing by stimulation of soil pH at 0-30 cm soils and altered the bacterial communities at 0-20 cm depths of the mine tailings. Significant differences existed in the relative abundance of the phyla Alphaproteobacteria, Deltaproteobacteria, Acidobacteria, Firmicutes and Nitrospira. Slight difference of bacterial communities were found at 30-60 cm depths of mine tailings. Abundance and activity analysis of nifH genes also explained the elevated soil nitrogen contents at the surface 0-20 cm of the vegetated soils. These results suggest that microbial succession occurred primarily at surface tailings and vegetation of pioneering plants might have promoted ecological restoration of mine tailings.

  14. Ecological restoration alters microbial communities in mine tailings profiles

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Li, Yang; Jia, Zhongjun; Sun, Qingye; Zhan, Jing; Yang, Yang; Wang, Dan

    2016-04-01

    Ecological restoration of mine tailings have impact on soil physiochemical properties and microbial communities. The surface soil has been a primary concern in the past decades, however it remains poorly understood about the adaptive response of microbial communities along the profile during ecological restoration of the tailings. In this study, microbial communities along a 60-cm profile were investigated in a mine tailing pond during ecological restoration of the bare waste tailings (BW) with two vegetated soils of Imperata cylindrica (IC) and Chrysopogon zizanioides (CZ) plants. Revegetation of both IC and CZ could retard soil degradation of mine tailing by stimulation of soil pH at 0–30 cm soils and altered the bacterial communities at 0–20 cm depths of the mine tailings. Significant differences existed in the relative abundance of the phyla Alphaproteobacteria, Deltaproteobacteria, Acidobacteria, Firmicutes and Nitrospira. Slight difference of bacterial communities were found at 30–60 cm depths of mine tailings. Abundance and activity analysis of nifH genes also explained the elevated soil nitrogen contents at the surface 0–20 cm of the vegetated soils. These results suggest that microbial succession occurred primarily at surface tailings and vegetation of pioneering plants might have promoted ecological restoration of mine tailings.

  15. Life in the "plastisphere": microbial communities on plastic marine debris.

    PubMed

    Zettler, Erik R; Mincer, Tracy J; Amaral-Zettler, Linda A

    2013-07-02

    Plastics are the most abundant form of marine debris, with global production rising and documented impacts in some marine environments, but the influence of plastic on open ocean ecosystems is poorly understood, particularly for microbial communities. Plastic marine debris (PMD) collected at multiple locations in the North Atlantic was analyzed with scanning electron microscopy (SEM) and next-generation sequencing to characterize the attached microbial communities. We unveiled a diverse microbial community of heterotrophs, autotrophs, predators, and symbionts, a community we refer to as the "Plastisphere". Pits visualized in the PMD surface conformed to bacterial shapes suggesting active hydrolysis of the hydrocarbon polymer. Small-subunit rRNA gene surveys identified several hydrocarbon-degrading bacteria, supporting the possibility that microbes play a role in degrading PMD. Some Plastisphere members may be opportunistic pathogens (the authors, unpublished data) such as specific members of the genus Vibrio that dominated one of our plastic samples. Plastisphere communities are distinct from surrounding surface water, implying that plastic serves as a novel ecological habitat in the open ocean. Plastic has a longer half-life than most natural floating marine substrates, and a hydrophobic surface that promotes microbial colonization and biofilm formation, differing from autochthonous substrates in the upper layers of the ocean.

  16. Quantitative tracking of isotope flows in proteomes of microbial communities

    SciTech Connect

    Fisher, Curt; Hyatt, Philip Douglas; Hettich, Robert {Bob} L; Banfield, Jillian F.

    2011-01-01

    Stable isotope probing (SIP) has been used to track nutrient flows in microbial communities, but existing protein-based SIP methods capable of quantifying the degree of label incorporation into peptides and proteins have been demonstrated only by targeting usually less than 100 proteins per sample. Our method automatically (i) identifies the sequence of and (ii) quantifies the degree of heavy atom enrichment for thousands of proteins from microbial community proteome samples. These features make our method suitable for comparing isotopic differences between closely related protein sequences, and for detecting labeling patterns in low-abundance proteins or proteins derived from rare community members. The proteomic stable isotope probing (SIP) method was validated using proteome samples of known stable isotope incorporation levels at 0.4%, {approx}50%, and {approx}98%. The method was then used to monitor incorporation of 15N into established and regrowing microbial biofilms. The results indicate organism-specific migration patterns from established into regrowing communities and provides insight into metabolism during biofilm formation. The SIP-proteomics method can be extended to many systems to track fluxes of 13C or 15N in microbial communities.

  17. Effects of Nutrient Enrichment on Microbial Communities and Carbon Cycling in Wetland Soils

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hartman, W.; Neubauer, S. C.; Richardson, C. J.

    2013-12-01

    soil carbon cycling, our work did identify a small number of individual taxonomic groups that were more strongly correlated with soil CO2 flux. These results suggest that a small number of microbial groups may potentially serve as keystone taxa (and functional indicators), which simple community fingerprinting approaches may overlook. Our results also demonstrate strong effects of soil phosphorus availability on both microbial communities and soil carbon cycling, even in wetland types traditionally considered to be nitrogen limited.

  18. Temperature sensitivity of soil microbial communities: An application of macromolecular rate theory to microbial respiration

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Alster, Charlotte J.; Koyama, Akihiro; Johnson, Nels G.; Wallenstein, Matthew D.; Fischer, Joseph C.

    2016-06-01

    There is compelling evidence that microbial communities vary widely in their temperature sensitivity and may adapt to warming through time. To date, this sensitivity has been largely characterized using a range of models relying on versions of the Arrhenius equation, which predicts an exponential increase in reaction rate with temperature. However, there is growing evidence from laboratory and field studies that observe nonmonotonic responses of reaction rates to variation in temperature, indicating that Arrhenius is not an appropriate model for quantitatively characterizing temperature sensitivity. Recently, Hobbs et al. (2013) developed macromolecular rate theory (MMRT), which incorporates thermodynamic temperature optima as arising from heat capacity differences between isoenzymes. We applied MMRT to measurements of respiration from soils incubated at different temperatures. These soils were collected from three grassland sites across the U.S. Great Plains and reciprocally transplanted, allowing us to isolate the effects of microbial community type from edaphic factors. We found that microbial community type explained roughly 30% of the variation in the CO2 production rate from the labile C pool but that temperature and soil type were most important in explaining variation in labile and recalcitrant C pool size. For six out of the nine soil × inoculum combinations, MMRT was superior to Arrhenius. The MMRT analysis revealed that microbial communities have distinct heat capacity values and temperature sensitivities sometimes independent of soil type. These results challenge the current paradigm for modeling temperature sensitivity of soil C pools and understanding of microbial enzyme dynamics.

  19. Stochastic and Deterministic Assembly Processes in Subsurface Microbial Communities

    SciTech Connect

    Stegen, James C.; Lin, Xueju; Konopka, Allan; Fredrickson, Jim K.

    2012-03-29

    A major goal of microbial community ecology is to understand the forces that structure community composition. Deterministic selection by specific environmental factors is sometimes important, but in other cases stochastic or ecologically neutral processes dominate. Lacking is a unified conceptual framework aiming to understand why deterministic processes dominate in some contexts but not others. Here we work towards such a framework. By testing predictions derived from general ecological theory we aim to uncover factors that govern the relative influences of deterministic and stochastic processes. We couple spatiotemporal data on subsurface microbial communities and environmental parameters with metrics and null models of within and between community phylogenetic composition. Testing for phylogenetic signal in organismal niches showed that more closely related taxa have more similar habitat associations. Community phylogenetic analyses further showed that ecologically similar taxa coexist to a greater degree than expected by chance. Environmental filtering thus deterministically governs subsurface microbial community composition. More importantly, the influence of deterministic environmental filtering relative to stochastic factors was maximized at both ends of an environmental variation gradient. A stronger role of stochastic factors was, however, supported through analyses of phylogenetic temporal turnover. While phylogenetic turnover was on average faster than expected, most pairwise comparisons were not themselves significantly non-random. The relative influence of deterministic environmental filtering over community dynamics was elevated, however, in the most temporally and spatially variable environments. Our results point to general rules governing the relative influences of stochastic and deterministic processes across micro- and macro-organisms.

  20. Timecourse analysis of photosynthetic microbial communities that degrade cellulose and fix nitrogen

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Knapp, A.; van der Heyde, R.; Sheets, M.; Zhang, L.; Wang, Y.; Liu, X.; Slikas, B.; Amaral-Zettler, L. A.; Huang, J.

    2014-12-01

    Cellulose is an abundant polymer derived from plant matter and it is also a nitrogen poor resource. Nutrient cycling is carried out by microbial communities in nature, and bacteria that degrade cellulose must be able to obtain a source of fixed nitrogen for growth. We used light wavelength selection to enrich for a series of anoxygenic photosynthetic microbial communities from marine and freshwater environments that degrade cellulose and fix nitrogen. This research examines how the communities carry out these processes. We compare community composition and metabolite production measured using high performance liquid chromatography and gas chromatography over time of growth of the communities. A freshwater community grown at 590nm showed the highest metabolic rates. Acetate and propionate reached maximum concentration at around day 4 and hydrogen concentrations peaked at 5uM on day 6 at stationary phase. There was no methane production by this culture suggesting methanogens were not present or inactive. In contrast, methanogenesis was very active in another freshwater community grown at 760/940nm. This culture showed acetate and propionate accumulation and hydrogen gas concentrations that decreased over time as well suggesting that hydrogenotrophic methanogenesis was occurring. A similar trend was observed in a marine community grown at 470nm. This work can enable determination of factors important for efficient community nutrient cycling and understanding of community dynamics. Future work will be done to determine the roles of the individual species of bacteria within the communities and to investigate the potential of these communities in biofuel production.

  1. Microbial community analysis of fouled reverse osmosis membranes used in water recycling.

    PubMed

    Ayache, C; Manes, C; Pidou, M; Croué, J P; Gernjak, W

    2013-06-15

    Biofouling on RO membranes has major cost implications in water reclamation. In this study membranes and water samples were collected from a RO pilot-plant operated on two sites to study the differences in microbial communities in order to develop a better understanding of the biofouling. For the two sites studied, the examination of the front membrane of the first stage and the tail membrane of the second stage of the RO train using 16S rRNA gene-based molecular technique showed that bacteria were similar on both stages and no significant effect of the membrane location within the RO train on the biofilm development could be discerned. However, the comparison of the identified bacteria from membrane samples between the two sites showed that each site is specific, leading to a different composition of microbial communities. The different nutrient concentrations in the RO feed water due to the different biological pre-treatments are one potential explanation for the observed differences in the microbial communities. Seasonal variations also play a major role in the development of microbial communities as shown by the significant differences observed between the communities measured in the samples in winter and summer on the second site. The results did not show similarity between the species identified on the RO membranes and in the feed water. Hence, the relationship of microbial community between the water generated during the pre-treatment process and RO membranes is not obvious. From this study, results showed that there is an actual need to investigate the development of microbial communities on membrane surface in real conditions in order to suggest tailored solutions for biofouling control and removal.

  2. Mechanisms of pollution induced community tolerance in a soil microbial community exposed to Cu.

    PubMed

    Wakelin, Steven; Gerard, Emily; Black, Amanda; Hamonts, Kelly; Condron, Leo; Yuan, Tong; van Nostrand, Joy; Zhou, Jizhong; O'Callaghan, Maureen

    2014-07-01

    Pollution induced community tolerance (PICT) to Cu(2+), and co-tolerance to nanoparticulate Cu, ionic silver (Ag(+)), and vancomycin were measured in field soils treated with Cu(2+) 15 years previously. EC50 values were determined using substrate induced respiration and correlations made against soil physicochemical properties, microbial community structure, physiological status (qCO2; metabolic quotient), and abundances of genes associated with metal and antibiotic resistance. Previous level of exposure to copper was directly (P < 0.05) associated with tolerance to addition of new Cu(2+), and also of nanoparticle Cu. However, Cu-exposed communities had no co-tolerance to Ag(+) and had increased susceptibly to vancomycin. Increased tolerance to both Cu correlated (P < 0.05) with increased metabolic quotient, potentially indicating that the community directed more energy towards cellular maintenance rather than biomass production. Neither bacterial or fungal community composition nor changes in the abundance of genes involved with metal resistance were related to PICT or co-tolerance mechanisms.

  3. Assembly-driven community genomics of a hypersaline microbial ecosystem.

    PubMed

    Podell, Sheila; Ugalde, Juan A; Narasingarao, Priya; Banfield, Jillian F; Heidelberg, Karla B; Allen, Eric E

    2013-01-01

    Microbial populations inhabiting a natural hypersaline lake ecosystem in Lake Tyrrell, Victoria, Australia, have been characterized using deep metagenomic sampling, iterative de novo assembly, and multidimensional phylogenetic binning. Composite genomes representing habitat-specific microbial populations were reconstructed for eleven different archaea and one bacterium, comprising between 0.6 and 14.1% of the planktonic community. Eight of the eleven archaeal genomes were from microbial species without previously cultured representatives. These new genomes provide habitat-specific reference sequences enabling detailed, lineage-specific compartmentalization of predicted functional capabilities and cellular properties associated with both dominant and less abundant community members, including organisms previously known only by their 16S rRNA sequences. Together, these data provide a comprehensive, culture-independent genomic blueprint for ecosystem-wide analysis of protein functions, population structure, and lifestyles of co-existing, co-evolving microbial groups within the same natural habitat. The "assembly-driven" community genomic approach demonstrated in this study advances our ability to push beyond single gene investigations, and promotes genome-scale reconstructions as a tangible goal in the quest to define the metabolic, ecological, and evolutionary dynamics that underpin environmental microbial diversity.

  4. Assessing the composition of microbial communities in textile wastewater treatment plants in comparison with municipal wastewater treatment plants.

    PubMed

    Meerbergen, Ken; Van Geel, Maarten; Waud, Michael; Willems, Kris A; Dewil, Raf; Van Impe, Jan; Appels, Lise; Lievens, Bart

    2017-02-01

    It is assumed that microbial communities involved in the biological treatment of different wastewaters having a different chemical composition harbor different microbial populations which are specifically adapted to the environmental stresses encountered in these systems. Yet, little is known about the composition of these microbial communities. Therefore, the aim of this study was to assess the microbial community composition over two seasons (winter and summer) in activated sludge from well-operating textile wastewater treatment plants (WWTPs) in comparison with municipal WWTPs, and to explain observed differences by environmental variables. 454-pyrosequencing generated 160 archaeal and 1645 bacterial species-level Operational Taxonomic Units (OTUs), with lower observed richness in activated sludge from textile WWTPs compared to municipal WWTPs. The bacterial phyla Planctomycetes, Chloroflexi, Chlorobi, and Acidobacteria were more abundant in activated sludge samples from textile WWTPs, together with archaeal members of Thaumarchaeota. Nonmetric multidimensional scaling analysis of the microbial communities showed that microbial communities from textile and municipal WWTPs were significantly different, with a seasonal effect on archaea. Nitrifying and denitrifying bacteria as well as phosphate-accumulation bacteria were more abundant in municipal WWTPs, while sulfate-reducing bacteria were almost only detected in textile WWTPs. Additionally, microbial communities from textile WWTPs were more dissimilar than those of municipal WWTPs, possibly due to a wider diversity in environmental stresses to which microbial communities in textile WWTPs are subjected to. High salinity, high organic loads, and a higher water temperature were important potential variables driving the microbial community composition in textile WWTPs. This study provides a general view on the composition of microbial communities in activated sludge of textile WWTPs, and may provide novel insights

  5. The ecotoxic potential of a new zero-valent iron nanomaterial, designed for the elimination of halogenated pollutants, and its effect on reductive dechlorinating microbial communities.

    PubMed

    Schiwy, Andreas; Maes, Hanna M; Koske, Daniel; Flecken, Mirkko; Schmidt, Kathrin R; Schell, Heico; Tiehm, Andreas; Kamptner, Andre; Thümmler, Silke; Stanjek, Helge; Heggen, Marc; Dunin-Borkowski, Rafal E; Braun, Jürgen; Schäffer, Andreas; Hollert, Henner

    2016-09-01

    The purpose of this study was to assess the ecotoxic potential of a new zero-valent iron nanomaterial produced for the elimination of chlorinated pollutants at contaminated sites. Abiotic dechlorination through the newly developed nanoscale zero-valent iron material and its effects on dechlorinating bacteria were investigated in anaerobic batch and column experiments. The aged, i.e. oxidized, iron material was characterization with dynamic light scattering, transmission electron microscopy and energy dispersive x-ray analysis, x-ray diffractometry and cell-free reactive oxygen measurements. Furthermore, it was evaluated in aerobic ecotoxicological test systems with algae, crustacean, and fish, and also applied in a mechanism specific test for mutagenicity. The anaerobic column experiments showed co-occurrence of abiotic and biological dechlorination of the common groundwater contaminant perchloroethene. No prolonged toxicity of the nanomaterial (measured for up to 300 days) towards the investigated dechlorinating microorganism was observed. The nanomaterial has a flake like appearance and an inhomogeneous size distribution. The toxicity to crustacean and fish was calculated and the obtained EC50 values were 163 mg/L and 458 mg/L, respectively. The nanomaterial showed no mutagenicity. It physically interacted with algae, which had implications for further testing and the evaluation of the results. Thus, the newly developed iron nanomaterial was slightly toxic in its reduced state but no prolonged toxicity was recorded. The aquatic tests revealed a low toxicity with EC50 values ≥ 163 mg/L. These concentrations are unlikely to be reached in the aquatic environment. Hence, this nanomaterial is probably of no environmental concern not prohibiting its application for groundwater remediation.

  6. Mining the Metabiome: Identifying Novel Natural Products from Microbial Communities

    PubMed Central

    Milshteyn, Aleksandr; Schneider, Jessica S.; Brady, Sean F.

    2014-01-01

    Summary Microbial-derived natural products provide the foundation for most of the chemotherapeutic arsenal available to contemporary medicine. In the face of a dwindling pipeline of new lead structures identified by traditional culturing techniques and an increasing need for new therapeutics, surveys of microbial biosynthetic diversity across environmental metabiomes have revealed enormous reservoirs of as yet untapped natural products chemistry. In this review we touch on the historical context of microbial natural product discovery and discuss innovations and technological advances that are facilitating culture-dependent and culture-independent access to new chemistry from environmental microbiomes with the goal of re-invigorating the small molecule therapeutics discovery pipeline. We highlight the successful strategies that have emerged and some of the challenges that must be overcome to enable the development of high-throughput methods for natural product discovery from complex microbial communities. PMID:25237864

  7. Microbial Community Responses to Glycine Addition in Kansas Prairie Soils

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bottos, E.; Roy Chowdhury, T.; White, R. A., III; Brislawn, C.; Fansler, S.; Kim, Y. M.; Metz, T. O.; McCue, L. A.; Jansson, J.

    2015-12-01

    Advances in sequencing technologies are rapidly expanding our abilities to unravel aspects of microbial community structure and function in complex systems like soil; however, characterizing the highly diverse communities is problematic, due primarily to challenges in data analysis. To tackle this problem, we aimed to constrain the microbial diversity in a soil by enriching for particular functional groups within a community through addition of "trigger substrates". Such trigger substrates, characterized by low molecular weight, readily soluble and diffusible in soil solution, representative of soil organic matter derivatives, would also be rapidly degradable. A relatively small energy investment to maintain the cell in a state of metabolic alertness for such substrates would be a better evolutionary strategy and presumably select for a cohort of microorganisms with the energetics and cellular machinery for utilization and growth. We chose glycine, a free amino acid (AA) known to have short turnover times (in the range of hours) in soil. As such, AAs are a good source of nitrogen and easily degradable, and can serve as building blocks for microbial proteins and other biomass components. We hypothesized that the addition of glycine as a trigger substrate will decrease microbial diversity and evenness, as taxa capable of metabolizing it are enriched in relation to those that are not. We tested this hypothesis by incubating three Kansas native prairie soils with glycine for 24 hours at 21 degree Celsius, and measured community level responses by 16S rRNA gene sequencing, metagenomics, and metatranscriptomics. Preliminary evaluation of 16S rRNA gene sequences revealed minor changes in bacterial community composition in response to glycine addition. We will also present data on functional gene abundance and expression. The results of these analyses will be useful in designing sequencing strategies aimed at dissecting and deciphering complex microbial communities.

  8. High-Resolution Microbial Community Succession of Microbially Induced Concrete Corrosion in Working Sanitary Manholes

    PubMed Central

    Ling, Alison L.; Robertson, Charles E.; Harris, J. Kirk; Frank, Daniel N.; Kotter, Cassandra V.; Stevens, Mark J.; Pace, Norman R.; Hernandez, Mark T.

    2015-01-01

    Microbially-induced concrete corrosion in headspaces threatens wastewater infrastructure worldwide. Models for predicting corrosion rates in sewer pipe networks rely largely on information from culture-based investigations. In this study, the succession of microbes associated with corroding concrete was characterized over a one-year monitoring campaign using rRNA sequence-based phylogenetic methods. New concrete specimens were exposed in two highly corrosive manholes (high concentrations of hydrogen sulfide and carbon dioxide gas) on the Colorado Front Range for up to a year. Community succession on corroding surfaces was assessed using Illumina MiSeq sequencing of 16S bacterial rRNA amplicons and Sanger sequencing of 16S universal rRNA clones. Microbial communities associated with corrosion fronts presented distinct succession patterns which converged to markedly low α-diversity levels (< 10 taxa) in conjunction with decreasing pH. The microbial community succession pattern observed in this study agreed with culture-based models that implicate acidophilic sulfur-oxidizer Acidithiobacillus spp. in advanced communities, with two notable exceptions. Early communities exposed to alkaline surface pH presented relatively high α-diversity, including heterotrophic, nitrogen-fixing, and sulfur-oxidizing genera, and one community exposed to neutral surface pH presented a diverse transition community comprised of less than 20% sulfur-oxidizers. PMID:25748024

  9. High-resolution microbial community succession of microbially induced concrete corrosion in working sanitary manholes.

    PubMed

    Ling, Alison L; Robertson, Charles E; Harris, J Kirk; Frank, Daniel N; Kotter, Cassandra V; Stevens, Mark J; Pace, Norman R; Hernandez, Mark T

    2015-01-01

    Microbially-induced concrete corrosion in headspaces threatens wastewater infrastructure worldwide. Models for predicting corrosion rates in sewer pipe networks rely largely on information from culture-based investigations. In this study, the succession of microbes associated with corroding concrete was characterized over a one-year monitoring campaign using rRNA sequence-based phylogenetic methods. New concrete specimens were exposed in two highly corrosive manholes (high concentrations of hydrogen sulfide and carbon dioxide gas) on the Colorado Front Range for up to a year. Community succession on corroding surfaces was assessed using Illumina MiSeq sequencing of 16S bacterial rRNA amplicons and Sanger sequencing of 16S universal rRNA clones. Microbial communities associated with corrosion fronts presented distinct succession patterns which converged to markedly low α-diversity levels (< 10 taxa) in conjunction with decreasing pH. The microbial community succession pattern observed in this study agreed with culture-based models that implicate acidophilic sulfur-oxidizer Acidithiobacillus spp. in advanced communities, with two notable exceptions. Early communities exposed to alkaline surface pH presented relatively high α-diversity, including heterotrophic, nitrogen-fixing, and sulfur-oxidizing genera, and one community exposed to neutral surface pH presented a diverse transition community comprised of less than 20% sulfur-oxidizers.

  10. Fungal communities of young and mature hypersaline microbial mats.

    PubMed

    Cantrell, Sharon A; Tkavc, Rok; Gunde-Cimerman, Nina; Zalar, Polona; Acevedo, Manuel; Báez-Félix, Claribel

    2013-01-01

    Microbial mats are a laminated organic-sedimentary ecosystem, found in a wide range of habitats. Fluctuating diel and seasonal physicochemical gradients characterize these ecosystems, resulting in both strata and microenvironments that harbor specific microbial communities. This study was undertaken to compare two types of microbial mats across seasons to further understand the structure of fungal communities in hypersaline microbial mats and their seasonal dynamics. The structure and diversity of fungal communities was documented in young transient and mature hypersaline microbial mats from a tropical region (Puerto Rico) using one culture-dependent and three culture-independent molecular techniques based on the internal transcribed spacer (ITS) region of ribosomal DNA: terminal restriction fragment length polymorphism (TRFLP), denaturing gradient gel electrophoresis (DGGE) and clone libraries. Two microbial mats (one young and transient, one mature) were sampled in Nov 2007 (wet season), Jan 2008 (intermediate season) and Mar 2008 (dry season) in the Cabo Rojo Solar Salterns on the southwestern coast of Puerto Rico. Traditional and molecular techniques revealed strong spatial and temporal heterogeneities in both microbial mats. Higher abundance of isolates and phylotypes were observed during the wet season, and diversity decreased from the top (oxic) to the bottom (anoxic) layers in both seasons. Some of the species isolated belong to the genera Aspergillus, Cladosporium, Hortaea, Pichia and Wallemia, which often are isolated from hypersaline environments. The most abundant clones belong to Acremonium strictum and Cladosporium halotolerans, which were not isolated in pure culture. The differences observed using culture-based and molecular techniques demonstrates the need of combining methods to study the diversity of fungi in a given substrate.

  11. Disconnect of microbial structure and function: enzyme activities and bacterial communities in nascent stream corridors

    PubMed Central

    Frossard, Aline; Gerull, Linda; Mutz, Michael; Gessner, Mark O

    2012-01-01

    A fundamental issue in microbial and general ecology is the question to what extent environmental conditions dictate the structure of communities and the linkages with functional properties of ecosystems (that is, ecosystem function). We approached this question by taking advantage of environmental gradients established in soil and sediments of small stream corridors in a recently created, early successional catchment. Specifically, we determined spatial and temporal patterns of bacterial community structure and their linkages with potential microbial enzyme activities along the hydrological flow paths of the catchment. Soil and sediments were sampled in a total of 15 sites on four occasions spread throughout a year. Denaturing gradient gel electrophoresis (DGGE) was used to characterize bacterial communities, and substrate analogs linked to fluorescent molecules served to track 10 different enzymes as specific measures of ecosystem function. Potential enzyme activities varied little among sites, despite contrasting environmental conditions, especially in terms of water availability. Temporal changes, in contrast, were pronounced and remarkably variable among the enzymes tested. This suggests much greater importance of temporal dynamics than spatial heterogeneity in affecting specific ecosystem functions. Most strikingly, bacterial community structure revealed neither temporal nor spatial patterns. The resulting disconnect between bacterial community structure and potential enzyme activities indicates high functional redundancy within microbial communities even in the physically and biologically simplified stream corridors of early successional landscapes. PMID:22030674

  12. Development of a Screening Assay for Microbial Community Profiling

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Miracle, A. L.; Tilton, F.; Bonheyo, G. T.; McDermott, J.

    2010-12-01

    Remediation of subsurface contaminant plumes has been challenging in the aspects of site characterization, design for treatability, and monitoring of treatment efficacy, to name a few. Characterization of physical and geochemical properties can be achieved through advances in sensor technologies, modeling, and well placement. However, the biotic composition within the subsurface is also an important component that adds an additional biochemical contribution that is not currently being assessed. Changes in the environment have impacts to the composition of microbial communities at this solid/fluid phase interface. The introduction of a remediative treatment may provide an abundant food source for microorganisms in the subsurface and alter the community dynamics. Such changes to the microbial community composition may have dramatic effects on bulk community biochemistry, which in turn may affect the quality of the remediative treatment in terms of effectiveness and transport through alteration of the environment. A screening array is being developed based on DNA sequence information from indigenous microorganisms within target sediments to be used to assess microbial community changes throughout remediative treatments and through time. Integration of physical, chemical, and biotic community information will be assessed to determine efficacy of treatment before, during, and after treatment to assess success of treatment, and measure any post-treatment changes.

  13. Oceanographic structure drives the assembly processes of microbial eukaryotic communities.

    PubMed

    Monier, Adam; Comte, Jérôme; Babin, Marcel; Forest, Alexandre; Matsuoka, Atsushi; Lovejoy, Connie

    2015-03-17

    Arctic Ocean microbial eukaryote phytoplankton form subsurface chlorophyll maximum (SCM), where much of the annual summer production occurs. This SCM is particularly persistent in the Western Arctic Ocean, which is strongly salinity stratified. The recent loss of multiyear sea ice and increased particulate-rich river discharge in the Arctic Ocean results in a greater volume of fresher water that may displace nutrient-rich saltier waters to deeper depths and decrease light penetration in areas affected by river discharge. Here, we surveyed microbial eukaryotic assemblages in the surface waters, and within and below the SCM. In most samples, we detected the pronounced SCM that usually occurs at the interface of the upper mixed layer and Pacific Summer Water (PSW). Poorly developed SCM was seen under two conditions, one above PSW and associated with a downwelling eddy, and the second in a region influenced by the Mackenzie River plume. Four phylogenetically distinct communities were identified: surface, pronounced SCM, weak SCM and a deeper community just below the SCM. Distance-decay relationships and phylogenetic structure suggested distinct ecological processes operating within these communities. In the pronounced SCM, picophytoplanktons were prevalent and community assembly was attributed to water mass history. In contrast, environmental filtering impacted the composition of the weak SCM communities, where heterotrophic Picozoa were more numerous. These results imply that displacement of Pacific waters to greater depth and increased terrigenous input may act as a control on SCM development and result in lower net summer primary production with a more heterotroph dominated eukaryotic microbial community.

  14. Peatland microbial communities and decomposition processes in the james bay lowlands, Canada.

    PubMed

    Preston, Michael D; Smemo, Kurt A; McLaughlin, James W; Basiliko, Nathan

    2012-01-01

    Northern peatlands are a large repository of atmospheric carbon due to an imbalance between primary production by plants and microbial decomposition. The James Bay Lowlands (JBL) of northern Ontario are a large peatland-complex but remain relatively unstudied. Climate change models predict the region will experience warmer and drier conditions, potentially altering plant community composition, and shifting the region from a long-term carbon sink to a source. We collected a peat core from two geographically separated (ca. 200 km) ombrotrophic peatlands (Victor and Kinoje Bogs) and one minerotrophic peatland (Victor Fen) located near Victor Bog within the JBL. We characterized (i) archaeal, bacterial, and fungal community structure with terminal restriction fragment length polymorphism of ribosomal DNA, (ii) estimated microbial activity using community level physiological profiling and extracellular enzymes activities, and (iii) the aeration and temperature dependence of carbon mineralization at three depths (0-10, 50-60, and 100-110 cm) from each site. Similar dominant microbial taxa were observed at all three peatlands despite differences in nutrient content and substrate quality. In contrast, we observed differences in basal respiration, enzyme activity, and the magnitude of substrate utilization, which were all generally higher at Victor Fen and similar between the two bogs. However, there was no preferential mineralization of carbon substrates between the bogs and fens. Microbial community composition did not correlate with measures of microbial activity but pH was a strong predictor of activity across all sites and depths. Increased peat temperature and aeration stimulated CO(2) production but this did not correlate with a change in enzyme activities. Potential microbial activity in the JBL appears to be influenced by the quality of the peat substrate and the presence of microbial inhibitors, which suggests the existing peat substrate will have a large

  15. Peatland Microbial Communities and Decomposition Processes in the James Bay Lowlands, Canada

    PubMed Central

    Preston, Michael D.; Smemo, Kurt A.; McLaughlin, James W.; Basiliko, Nathan

    2012-01-01

    Northern peatlands are a large repository of atmospheric carbon due to an imbalance between primary production by plants and microbial decomposition. The James Bay Lowlands (JBL) of northern Ontario are a large peatland-complex but remain relatively unstudied. Climate change models predict the region will experience warmer and drier conditions, potentially altering plant community composition, and shifting the region from a long-term carbon sink to a source. We collected a peat core from two geographically separated (ca. 200 km) ombrotrophic peatlands (Victor and Kinoje Bogs) and one minerotrophic peatland (Victor Fen) located near Victor Bog within the JBL. We characterized (i) archaeal, bacterial, and fungal community structure with terminal restriction fragment length polymorphism of ribosomal DNA, (ii) estimated microbial activity using community level physiological profiling and extracellular enzymes activities, and (iii) the aeration and temperature dependence of carbon mineralization at three depths (0–10, 50–60, and 100–110 cm) from each site. Similar dominant microbial taxa were observed at all three peatlands despite differences in nutrient content and substrate quality. In contrast, we observed differences in basal respiration, enzyme activity, and the magnitude of substrate utilization, which were all generally higher at Victor Fen and similar between the two bogs. However, there was no preferential mineralization of carbon substrates between the bogs and fens. Microbial community composition did not correlate with measures of microbial activity but pH was a strong predictor of activity across all sites and depths. Increased peat temperature and aeration stimulated CO2 production but this did not correlate with a change in enzyme activities. Potential microbial activity in the JBL appears to be influenced by the quality of the peat substrate and the presence of microbial inhibitors, which suggests the existing peat substrate will have a large

  16. Effects of experimental lead pollution on the microbial communities associated with Sphagnum fallax (Bryophyta).

    PubMed

    Nguyen-Viet, H; Gilbert, D; Mitchell, E A D; Badot, P-M; Bernard, N

    2007-08-01

    Ecotoxicological studies usually focus on single microbial species under controlled conditions. As a result, little is known about the responses of different microbial functional groups or individual species to stresses. In an aim to assess the response of complex microbial communities to pollution in their natural habitat, we studied the effect of a simulated lead pollution on the microbial community (bacteria, cyanobacteria, protists, fungi, and micrometazoa) living on Sphagnum fallax. Mosses were grown in the laboratory with 0 (control), 625, and 2,500 microg L(-1) of Pb(2+) diluted in a standard nutrient solution and were sampled after 0, 6, 12, and 20 weeks. The biomasses of bacteria, microalgae, testate amoebae, and ciliates were dramatically and significantly decreased in both Pb addition treatments after 6, 12, and 20 weeks in comparison with the control. The biomass of cyanobacteria declined after 6 and 12 weeks in the highest Pb treatment. The biomasses of fungi, rotifers, and nematodes decreased along the duration of the experiment but were not significantly affected by lead addition. Consequently, the total microbial biomass was lower for both Pb addition treatments after 12 and 20 weeks than in the controls. The community structure was strongly modified due to changes in the densities of testate amoebae and ciliates, whereas the relative contribution of bacteria to the microbial biomass was stable. Differences in responses among the microbial groups suggest changes in the trophic links among them. The correlation between the biomass of bacteria and that of ciliates or testate amoebae increased with increasing Pb loading. We interpret this result as an effect on the grazing pathways of these predators and by the Pb effect on other potential prey (i.e., smaller protists). The community approach used here complements classical ecotoxicological studies by providing clues to the complex effect of pollutant-affecting organisms both directly and indirectly

  17. Which Members of the Microbial Communities Are Active? Microarrays

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Morris, Brandon E. L.

    Here, we introduce the concept of microarrays, discuss the advantages of several different types of arrays and present a case study that illustrates a targeted-profiling approach to bioremediation of a hydrocarbon-contaminated site in an Arctic environment. The majority of microorganisms in the terrestrial subsurface, particularly those involved in 'heavy oil' formation, reservoir souring or biofouling remain largely uncharacterised (Handelsman, 2004). There is evidence though that these processes are biologically catalysed, including stable isotopic composition of hydrocarbons in oil formations (Pallasser, 2000; Sun et al., 2005), the absence of biodegraded oil from reservoirs warmer than 80°C (Head et al., 2003) or negligible biofouling in the absence of biofilms (Dobretsov et al., 2009; Lewandowski and Beyenal, 2008), and all clearly suggest an important role for microorganisms in the deep biosphere in general and oilfield systems in particular. While the presence of sulphate-reducing bacteria in oilfields was first observed in the early twentieth century (Bastin, 1926), it was only through careful experiments with isolates from oil systems or contaminated environments that unequivocal evidence for hydrocarbon biodegradation under anaerobic conditions was provided (for a review, see Widdel et al., 2006). Work with pure cultures and microbial enrichments also led to the elucidation of the biochemistry of anaerobic aliphatic and aromatic hydrocarbon degradation and the identification of central metabolites and genes involved in the process, e.g. (Callaghan et al., 2008; Griebler et al., 2003; Kropp et al., 2000). This information could then be extrapolated to the environment to monitor degradation processes and determine if in situ microbial populations possessed the potential for contaminant bioremediation, e.g. Parisi et al. (2009). While other methods have also been developed to monitor natural attenuation of hydrocarbons (Meckenstock et al., 2004), we are

  18. Molecular Survey of Concrete Sewer Biofilm Microbial Communities

    EPA Science Inventory

    Although bacteria are implicated in deteriorating concrete structures, there is very little information on the composition of concrete microbial communities. To this end, we studied different concrete biofilms by performing sequence analysis of 16S rDNA concrete clone libraries. ...

  19. Post fumigation recovery of soil microbial community structure

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Soil fumigants have been extensively used to control target soil-borne pathogens and weeds for the past few decades. It is known that the fumigants with broad biocidal activity can affect both target and non-target soil organisms, but the recovery of soil microbial communities are unknown until rece...

  20. Bacterial Invasion Dynamics in Zebrafish Gut Microbial Communities

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Logan, Savannah; Jemielita, Matthew; Wiles, Travis; Schlomann, Brandon; Hammer, Brian; Guillemin, Karen; Parthasarathy, Raghuveer

    Microbial communities residing in the vertebrate intestine play an important role in host development and health. These communities must be in part shaped by interactions between microbial species as they compete for resources in a physically constrained system. To better understand these interactions, we use light sheet microscopy and zebrafish as a model organism to image established gut microbial communities as they are invaded by robustly-colonizing challengers. We demonstrate that features of the challenger, including motility and spatial distribution, impact success in invasion and in outcompeting the original community. We also show that physical characteristics of the host, such as the motility of the gut, play important roles in mediating inter-species competition. Finally, we examine the influence of the contact-dependent type VI secretion system (T6SS), which is used by specific bacteria to cause cell lysis by injecting toxic effector proteins into competitors. Our findings provide insights into the determinants of microbial success in the complex ecosystems found in the gut.

  1. Microbial community functional change during vertebrate carrion decomposition

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Microorganisms play a critical role in the decomposition of organic matter, which contributes to energy and nutrient transformation in every ecosystem, yet little is known about the functional activity of epinecrotic microbial communities associated with carrion. The objective of this study was to ...

  2. Soil microbial communities following bush removal in a Namibian savanna

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Savanna ecosystems are subject to desertification and bush encroachment, which reduce the grazing value of the land and hence the carrying capacity for wildlife and livestock. In this study we examined the soil microbial communities under bush and grass in Namibia. We analyzed the soil at a chronose...

  3. Spatial patterns of microbial community composition within Lake Erie sediments

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Lake Erie is a large freshwater ecosystem with three distinct basins that exhibit an east-west gradient of increasing productivity, as well as allochthonous inputs of nutrients and xenobiotics. To evaluate microbial community composition throughout this ecosystem, 435 16S rDNA environmental clones w...

  4. Changes in Soil Microbial Community Structure with Flooding

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Flooding disturbs both above- and below-ground ecosystem processes. Although often ignored, changes in below-ground environments are no less important than those that occur above-ground. Shifts in soil microbial community structure are expected when anaerobic conditions develop from flooding. The ...

  5. Development of soil microbial communities during tallgrass prairie restoration

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Soil microbial communities were examined in a chronosequence of four different land-use treatments at the Konza Prairie Biological Station, Kansas. The time series comprised a conventionally tilled cropland (CTC) developed on former prairie soils, two restored grasslands that were initiated on forme...

  6. Cecum microbial communities from steers differing in feed efficiency

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Aims: To characterize the microbial communities of the cecum among steers differing in feed efficiency. Methods and Results: Individual feed intake (FI) and body weight (BW) gain were determined from animals fed the same ration, within two contemporary groups of steers. BW gain was regressed on F...

  7. Effect of pesticides on microbial communities in container aquatic habitats

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Mosquitoes develop in a variety of aquatic habitats and feed on microbial communities associated with decaying organic matter. These aquatic habitats are often embedded within and around agricultural lands and are frequently exposed to agricultural chemicals. We used a microcosm approach to examine ...

  8. Effect of Increasing Nitrogen Deposition on Soil Microbial Communities

    SciTech Connect

    Xiao, Shengmu; Xue, Kai; He, Zhili; VanNostrand, Joy D.; Liu, Jianshe; Hobbie, Sarah E.; Reich, Peter B.; Zhou, Jizhong

    2010-05-17

    Increasing nitrogen deposition, increasing atmospheric CO2, and decreasing biodiversity are three main environmental changes occurring on a global scale. The BioCON (Biodiversity, CO2, and Nitrogen) ecological experiment site at the University of Minnesota's Cedar Creek Ecosystem Science Reserve started in 1997, to better understand how these changes would affect soil systems. To understand how increasing nitrogen deposition affects the microbial community diversity, heterogeneity, and functional structure impact soil microbial communities, 12 samples were collected from the BioCON plots in which nitrogenous fertilizer was added to simulate the effect of increasing nitrogen deposition and 12 samples from without added fertilizer. DNA from the 24 samples was extracted using a freeze-grind protocol, amplified, labeled with a fluorescent dye, and then hybridized to GeoChip, a functional gene array containing probes for genes involved in N, S and C cycling, metal resistance and organic contaminant degradation. Detrended correspondence analysis (DCA) of all genes detected was performed to analyze microbial community patterns. The first two axes accounted for 23.5percent of the total variation. The samples fell into two major groups: fertilized and non-fertilized, suggesting that nitrogenous fertilizer had a significant impact on soil microbial community structure and diversity. The functional gene numbers detected in fertilized samples was less that detected in non-fertilizer samples. Functional genes involving in the N cycling were mainly discussed.

  9. Microbial abundance and community structure in a melting alpine snowpack.

    PubMed

    Lazzaro, Anna; Wismer, Andrea; Schneebeli, Martin; Erny, Isolde; Zeyer, Josef

    2015-05-01

    Snowmelt is a crucial period for alpine soil ecosystems, as it is related to inputs of nutrients, particulate matter and microorganisms to the underlying soil. Although snow-inhabiting microbial communities represent an important inoculum for soils, they have thus far received little attention. The distribution and structure of these microorganisms in the snowpack may be linked to the physical properties of the snowpack at snowmelt. Snow samples were taken from snow profiles at four sites (1930-2519 m a.s.l.) in the catchment of the Tiefengletscher, Canton Uri, Switzerland. Microbial (Archaea, Bacteria and Fungi) communities were investigated through T-RFLP profiling of the 16S and 18S rRNA genes, respectively. In parallel, we assessed physical and chemical parameters relevant to the understanding of melting processes. Along the snow profiles, density increased with depth due to compaction, while other physico-chemical parameters, such as temperature and concentrations of DOC and soluble ions, remained in the same range (e.g. <2 mg DOC L(-1), 5-30 μg NH4 (+)-N L(-1)) in all samples at all sites. Along the snow profiles, no major change was observed either in cell abundance or in bacterial and fungal diversity. No Archaea could be detected in the snow. Microbial communities, however, differed significantly between sites. Our results show that meltwater rearranges soluble ions and microbial communities in the snowpack.

  10. Effects of biochar blends on microbial community composition in two coastal plain soils

    EPA Science Inventory

    The amendment of soil with biochar has been demonstrated to have an effect not only on the soil physicochemical properties, but also on soil microbial community composition and activity. Previous reports have demonstrated significant impacts on soil microbial community structure....

  11. Characterization of fatty acid-producing wastewater microbial communities using next generation sequencing technologies

    EPA Science Inventory

    While wastewater represents a viable source of bacterial biodiesel production, very little is known on the composition of these microbial communities. We studied the taxonomic diversity and succession of microbial communities in bioreactors accumulating fatty acids using 454-pyro...

  12. Distinctive Feature of Microbial Communities and Bacterial Functional Profiles in Tricholoma matsutake Dominant Soil

    PubMed Central

    Oh, Seung-Yoon; Fong, Jonathan J.; Park, Myung Soo; Lim, Young Woon

    2016-01-01

    Tricholoma matsutake, the pine mushroom, is a valuable forest product with high economic value in Asia, and plays an important ecological role as an ectomycorrhizal fungus. Around the host tree, T. matsutake hyphae generate a distinctive soil aggregating environment called a fairy ring, where fruiting bodies form. Because T. matsutake hyphae dominate the soil near the fairy ring, this species has the potential to influence the microbial community. To explore the influence of T. matsutake on the microbial communities, we compared the microbial community and predicted bacterial function between two different soil types—T. matsutake dominant and T. matsutake minor. DNA sequence analyses showed that fungal and bacterial diversity were lower in the T. matsutake dominant soil compared to T. matsutake minor soil. Some microbial taxa were significantly more common in the T. matsutake dominant soil across geographic locations, many of which were previously identified as mycophillic or mycorrhiza helper bacteria. Between the two soil types, the predicted bacterial functional profiles (using PICRUSt) had significantly distinct KEGG modules. Modules for amino acid uptake, carbohydrate metabolism, and the type III secretion system were higher in the T. matsutake dominant soil than in the T. matsutake minor soil. Overall, similar microbial diversity, community structure, and bacterial functional profiles of the T. matsutake dominant soil across geographic locations suggest that T. matsutake may generate a dominance effect. PMID:27977803

  13. Huanglongbing alters the structure and functional diversity of microbial communities associated with citrus rhizosphere

    PubMed Central

    Trivedi, Pankaj; He, Zhili; Van Nostrand, Joy D; Albrigo, Gene; Zhou, Jizhong; Wang, Nian

    2012-01-01

    The diversity and stability of bacterial communities present in the rhizosphere heavily influence soil and plant quality and ecosystem sustainability. The goal of this study is to understand how ‘Candidatus Liberibacter asiaticus' (known to cause Huanglongbing, HLB) influences the structure and functional potential of microbial communities associated with the citrus rhizosphere. Clone library sequencing and taxon/group-specific quantitative real-time PCR results showed that ‘Ca. L. asiaticus' infection restructured the native microbial community associated with citrus rhizosphere. Within the bacterial community, phylum Proteobacteria with various genera typically known as successful rhizosphere colonizers were significantly greater in clone libraries from healthy samples, whereas phylum Acidobacteria, Actinobacteria and Firmicutes, typically more dominant in the bulk soil were higher in ‘Ca. L. asiaticus'-infected samples. A comprehensive functional microarray GeoChip 3.0 was used to determine the effects of ‘Ca. L. asiaticus' infection on the functional diversity of rhizosphere microbial communities. GeoChip analysis showed that HLB disease has significant effects on various functional guilds of bacteria. Many genes involved in key ecological processes such as nitrogen cycling, carbon fixation, phosphorus utilization, metal homeostasis and resistance were significantly greater in healthy than in the ‘Ca. L. asiaticus'-infected citrus rhizosphere. Our results showed that the microbial community of the ‘Ca. L. asiaticus'-infected citrus rhizosphere has shifted away from using more easily degraded sources of carbon to the more recalcitrant forms. Overall, our study provides evidence that the change in plant physiology mediated by ‘Ca. L. asiaticus' infection could elicit shifts in the composition and functional potential of rhizosphere microbial communities. In the long term, these fluctuations might have important implications for the productivity and

  14. Plant roots alter microbial potential for mediation of soil organic carbon decomposition

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Firestone, M.; Shi, S.; Herman, D.; He, Z.; Zhou, J.

    2014-12-01

    Plant root regulation of soil organic carbon (SOC) decomposition is a key controller of terrestrial C-cycling. Although many studies have tested possible mechanisms underlying plant "priming" of decomposition, few have investigated the microbial mediators of decomposition, which can be greatly influenced by plant activities. Here we examined effects of Avena fatua roots on decomposition of 13C-labeled root litter in a California grassland soil over two simulated growing-seasons. The presence of plant roots consistently suppressed rates of litter decomposition. Reduction of inorganic nitrogen (N) concentration in soil reduced but did not completely relieve this suppressive effect. The presence of plants significantly altered the abundance, composition and functional potential of microbial communities. Significantly higher signal intensities of genes capable of degrading low molecular weight organic compounds (e.g., glucose, formate and malate) were observed in microbial communities from planted soils, while microorganisms in unplanted soils had higher relative abundances of genes involved in degradation of some macromolecules (e.g., hemicellulose and lignin). Additionally, compared to unplanted soils, microbial communities from planted soils had higher signal intensities of proV and proW, suggesting microbial osmotic stress in planted soils. Possible mechanisms for the observed inhibition of decomposition are 1) microbes preferentially using simple substrates from root exudates and 2) soil drying by plant evapotranspiration impairing microbial activity. We propose a simple data-based model suggesting that the impacts of roots, the soil environment, and microbial community composition on decomposition processes result from impacts of these factors on the soil microbial functional gene potential.

  15. Analysis of microbial community composition in a lab-scale membrane distillation bioreactor

    PubMed Central

    Zhang, Q; Shuwen, G; Zhang, J; Fane, AG; Kjelleberg, S; Rice, SA; McDougald, D

    2015-01-01

    Aims Membrane distillation bioreactors (MDBR) have potential for industrial applications where wastewater is hot or waste heat is available, but the role of micro-organisms in MDBRs has never been determined, and thus was the purpose of this study. Methods and Results Microbial communities were characterized by bacterial and archaeal 16S and eukaryotic 18S rRNA gene tag-encoded pyrosequencing of DNA obtained from sludge. Taxonomy-independent analysis revealed that bacterial communities had a relatively low richness and diversity, and community composition strongly correlated with conductivity, total nitrogen and bound extracellular polymeric substances (EPS). Taxonomy-dependent analysis revealed that Rubrobacter and Caldalkalibacillus were abundant members of the bacterial community, but no archaea were detected. Eukaryotic communities had a relatively high richness and diversity, and both changes in community composition and abundance of the dominant genus, Candida, correlated with bound EPS. Conclusions Thermophilic MDBR communities were comprised of a low diversity bacterial community and a highly diverse eukaryotic community with no archea detected. Communities exhibited low resilience to changes in operational parameters. Specifically, retenatate nutrient composition and concentration was strongly correlated with the dominant species. Significance and Impact of the Study This study provides an understanding of microbial community diversity in an MDBR, which is fundamental to the optimization of reactor performance. PMID:25604265

  16. Patterns in Wetland Microbial Community Composition and Functional Gene Repertoire Associated with Methane Emissions

    PubMed Central

    He, Shaomei; Malfatti, Stephanie A.; McFarland, Jack W.; Anderson, Frank E.; Pati, Amrita; Huntemann, Marcel; Tremblay, Julien; Glavina del Rio, Tijana; Waldrop, Mark P.; Windham-Myers, Lisamarie

    2015-01-01

    ABSTRACT Wetland restoration on peat islands previously drained for agriculture has potential to reverse land subsidence and sequester atmospheric carbon dioxide as peat accretes. However, the emission of methane could potentially offset the greenhouse gas benefits of captured carbon. As microbial communities play a key role in governing wetland greenhouse gas fluxes, we are interested in how microbial community composition and functions are associated with wetland hydrology, biogeochemistry, and methane emission, which is critical to modeling the microbial component in wetland methane fluxes and to managing restoration projects for maximal carbon sequestration. Here, we couple sequence-based methods with biogeochemical and greenhouse gas measurements to interrogate microbial communities from a pilot-scale restored wetland in the Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta of California, revealing considerable spatial heterogeneity even within this relatively small site. A number of microbial populations and functions showed strong correlations with electron acceptor availability and methane production; some also showed a preference for association with plant roots. Marker gene phylogenies revealed a diversity of major methane-producing and -consuming populations and suggested novel diversity within methanotrophs. Methanogenic archaea were observed in all samples, as were nitrate-, sulfate-, and metal-reducing bacteria, indicating that no single terminal electron acceptor was preferred despite differences in energetic favorability and suggesting spatial microheterogeneity and microniches. Notably, methanogens were negatively correlated with nitrate-, sulfate-, and metal-reducing bacteria and were most abundant at sampling sites with high peat accretion and low electron acceptor availability, where methane production was highest. PMID:25991679

  17. Membrane bioreactors fed with different COD/N ratio wastewater: impacts on microbial community, microbial products, and membrane fouling.

    PubMed

    Han, Xiaomeng; Wang, Zhiwei; Ma, Jinxing; Zhu, Chaowei; Li, Yaxin; Wu, Zhichao

    2015-08-01

    It is known that an increase of COD/N ratio can result in an enhanced removal of nutrients in membrane bioreactors (MBRs); however, impacts of doing so on membrane filtration performance remain unclear. In this work, comparison of membrane filtration performance, microbial community, and microbial products under low temperature was carried out in anoxic/oxic (A/O) MBRs with COD/N ratios of 9.9 and 5.5 g COD/g N in influent. There was no doubt that an improvement of nitrogen removal under high COD/N ratio was observed; however, severer membrane fouling was found compared to the MBR fed with low COD/N ratio wastewater. The increase of COD/N ratio resulted in an elevated production of humic acids in soluble microbial product (SMP) and carbohydrates, proteins, and humic acids in loosely bound extracellular polymeric substance (LB-EPS). Quartz crystal microbalance with dissipation monitoring (QCM-D) analysis showed that the adsorption capability of SMP and LB-EPS was higher in the MBR with higher COD/N ratio. Four hundred fifty four high-throughput pyrosequencing revealed that the higher COD/N ratio led to the enrichment of Bacteroidetes at phylum level and Azospira, Thauera, Zoogloea, etc. at genus level. Bacteroidetes are considered to potentially release EPS, and Azospira, Thauera, and Zoogloea, etc. have denitrification activity. The change in microbial communities is consistent with MBR performance.

  18. Biological Mass Spectrometry and Shotgun Proteomics of Microbial Systems: Methods for studying microbial physiology from isolates to environmental communities

    SciTech Connect

    Dill, Brian; Young, Jacque C; Carey, Patricia A; Verberkmoes, Nathan C

    2010-01-01

    Microbial ecology is currently experiencing a renaissance spurred by the rapid development of molecular techniques and omics technologies in particular. As never before, these tools have allowed researchers in the field to produce a massive amount of information through in situ measurements and analysis of natural microbial communities, both vital approaches to the goal of unraveling the interactions of microbes with their environment and with one another. While genomics can provide information regarding the genetic potential of microbes, proteomics characterizes the primary end-stage product, proteins, thus conveying functional information concerning microbial activity. Advances in mass spectrometry instrumentation and methodologies, along with bioinformatic approaches, have brought this analytic chemistry technique to relevance in the biological realm due to its powerful applications in proteomics. Mass spectrometry-enabled proteomics, including bottom-up and top-down approaches, is capable of supplying a wealth of biologically-relevant information, from simple protein cataloging of the proteome of a microbial community to identifying post-translational modifications of individual proteins.

  19. Characterization of the microbial acid mine drainage microbial community using culturing and direct sequencing techniques.

    PubMed

    Auld, Ryan R; Myre, Maxine; Mykytczuk, Nadia C S; Leduc, Leo G; Merritt, Thomas J S

    2013-05-01

    We characterized the bacterial community from an AMD tailings pond using both classical culturing and modern direct sequencing techniques and compared the two methods. Acid mine drainage (AMD) is produced by the environmental and microbial oxidation of minerals dissolved from mining waste. Surprisingly, we know little about the microbial communities associated with AMD, despite the fundamental ecological roles of these organisms and large-scale economic impact of these waste sites. AMD microbial communities have classically been characterized by laboratory culturing-based techniques and more recently by direct sequencing of marker gene sequences, primarily the 16S rRNA gene. In our comparison of the techniques, we find that their results are complementary, overall indicating very similar community structure with similar dominant species, but with each method identifying some species that were missed by the other. We were able to culture the majority of species that our direct sequencing results indicated were present, primarily species within the Acidithiobacillus and Acidiphilium genera, although estimates of relative species abundance were only obtained from direct sequencing. Interestingly, our culture-based methods recovered four species that had been overlooked from our sequencing results because of the rarity of the marker gene sequences, likely members of the rare biosphere. Further, direct sequencing indicated that a single genus, completely missed in our culture-based study, Legionella, was a dominant member of the microbial community. Our results suggest that while either method does a reasonable job of identifying the dominant members of the AMD microbial community, together the methods combine to give a more complete picture of the true diversity of this environment.

  20. Microbial surfactants and their potential applications: an overview.

    PubMed

    Mukherjee, Ashis K; Das, Kishore

    2010-01-01

    Biosurfactant or microbial surfactants produced by microbes are structurally diverse and heterogeneous groups of surface-active amphipathic molecules. They are capable of reducing surface and interfacial tension and have a wide range of industrial and environmental applications. The present chapter reviews the biochemical properties of different classes of microbial surfactants and their potential application in different industrial sectors.

  1. Depth-resolved microbial community analyses in two contrasting soil cores contaminated by antimony and arsenic.

    PubMed

    Xiao, Enzong; Krumins, Valdis; Xiao, Tangfu; Dong, Yiran; Tang, Song; Ning, Zengping; Huang, Zhengyu; Sun, Weimin

    2017-02-01

    Investigation of microbial communities of soils contaminated by antimony (Sb) and arsenic (As) is necessary to obtain knowledge for their bioremediation. However, little is known about the depth profiles of microbial community composition and structure in Sb and As contaminated soils. Our previous studies have suggested that historical factors (i.e., soil and sediment) play important roles in governing microbial community structure and composition. Here, we selected two different types of soil (flooded paddy soil versus dry corn field soil) with co-contamination of Sb and As to study interactions between these metalloids, geochemical parameters and the soil microbiota as well as microbial metabolism in response to Sb and As contamination. Comprehensive geochemical analyses and 16S rRNA amplicon sequencing were used to shed light on the interactions of the microbial communities with their environments. A wide diversity of taxonomical groups was present in both soil cores, and many were significantly correlated with geochemical parameters. Canonical correspondence analysis (CCA) and co-occurrence networks further elucidated the impact of geochemical parameters (including Sb and As contamination fractions and sulfate, TOC, Eh, and pH) on vertical distribution of soil microbial communities. Metagenomes predicted from the 16S data using PICRUSt included arsenic metabolism genes such as arsenate reductase (ArsC), arsenite oxidase small subunit (AoxA and AoxB), and arsenite transporter (ArsA and ACR3). In addition, predicted abundances of arsenate reductase (ArsC) and arsenite oxidase (AoxA and AoxB) genes were significantly correlated with Sb contamination fractions, These results suggest potential As biogeochemical cycling in both soil cores and potentially dynamic Sb biogeochemical cycling as well.

  2. Microbial community structure of different electrode materials in constructed wetland incorporating microbial fuel cell.

    PubMed

    Wang, Junfeng; Song, Xinshan; Wang, Yuhui; Abayneh, Befkadu; Ding, Yi; Yan, Denghua; Bai, Junhong

    2016-12-01

    The microbial fuel cell coupled with constructed wetland (CW-MFC) microcosms were operated under fed-batch mode for evaluating the effect of electrode materials on bioelectricity generation and microbial community composition. Experimental results indicated that the bioenergy output in CW-MFC increased with the substrate concentration; maximum average voltage (177mV) was observed in CW-MFC with carbon fiber felt (CFF). In addition, the four different materials resulted in the formation of significantly different microbial community distribution around the anode electrode. The relative abundance of Proteobacteria in CFF and foamed nickel (FN) was significantly higher than that in stainless steel mesh (SSM) and graphite rod (GR) samples. Notably, the findings indicate that CW-MFC utilizing FN anode electrode could apparently improve relative abundance of Dechloromonas, which has been regarded as a denitrifying and phosphate accumulating microorganism.

  3. Microbial communities in paleosoils of Southern Russian steppes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Khomutova, T.; Demkina, T.; Kashirskaya, N.; Demkin, V.

    2009-04-01

    Ground monuments (kurgans) emerged about 6000 yr ago in the steppes of Eurasia; the funeral ceremony of erecting kurgans existed till XVth century. Today they have become an integral part of steppe landscape. Excavations of kurgans provide information about culture of steppe inhabitants and also open paleosoils buried (conserved) beneath from the time of kurgans erecting. Paleosoils in situ buried beneath kurgans and excluded from the further soil-forming process, imprint the conditions of past environment in a number of their properties, in carbonate, gypsum and salt profiles, etc. Among important indicators characterization of soil microbial communities is a promising and yet undeveloped field. The adaptive strategy of microorganisms, which allow them long withstand stressful conditions, is transformation to a resting state. We suggest that despite of possible time-connected changes, microbial communities from dry environments conserved within the paleosoils, might maintain some features of their structure from the time of paleosoil burial. The aim of the work was to trace the amount and composition of microbial communities in paleosoils buried under kurgans of different ages located in southern Russia steppes in connection to the dynamics of environmental conditions. We estimated total and alive (dormant) microbial biomass, the morphological peculiarities of microbial cells, the diversity and relative abundance of microorganisms of different trophic groups. It was shown that the number of microorganisms in A1 horizon of the buried paleosoils is an order higher than in the kurgan embankments that points to the integrity of microbial society from the moment of the kurgan erection. Within the paleosoil profiles the parameters studied did not decrease monotonously with the age of burial but had a specific dynamics. The microbial biomass from different horizons of under-kurgan paleosoils ranged in 600-1700 g C/g soil, while the share of microbes able to reactivate

  4. Extensive Profiling of a Complex Microbial Community by High-Throughput Sequencing

    PubMed Central

    Hill, Janet E.; Seipp, Robyn P.; Betts, Martin; Hawkins, Lindsay; Van Kessel, Andrew G.; Crosby, William L.; Hemmingsen, Sean M.

    2002-01-01

    Complex microbial communities remain poorly characterized despite their ubiquity and importance to human and animal health, agriculture, and industry. Attempts to describe microbial communities by either traditional microbiological methods or molecular methods have been limited in both scale and precision. The availability of genomics technologies offers an unprecedented opportunity to conduct more comprehensive characterizations of microbial communities. Here we describe the application of an established molecular diagnostic method based on the chaperonin-60 sequence, in combination with high-throughput sequencing, to the profiling of a microbial community: the pig intestinal microbial community. Four libraries of cloned cpn60 sequences were generated by two genomic DNA extraction procedures in combination with two PCR protocols. A total of 1,125 cloned cpn60 sequences from the four libraries were sequenced. Among the 1,125 cloned cpn60 sequences, we identified 398 different nucleotide sequences encoding 280 unique peptide sequences. Pairwise comparisons of the 398 unique nucleotide sequences revealed a high degree of sequence diversity within the library. Identification of the likely taxonomic origins of cloned sequences ranged from imprecise, with clones assigned to a taxonomic subclass, to precise, for cloned sequences with 100% DNA sequence identity with a species in our reference database. The compositions of the four libraries were compared and differences related to library construction parameters were observed. Our results indicate that this method is an alternative to 16S rRNA sequence-based studies which can be scaled up for the purpose of performing a potentially comprehensive assessment of a given microbial community or for comparative studies. PMID:12039767

  5. Effect of electricity on microbial community of microbial fuel cell simultaneously treating sulfide and nitrate

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cai, Jing; Zheng, Ping; Xing, Yajuan; Qaisar, Mahmood

    2015-05-01

    The effect of electric current on microbial community is explored in Microbial Fuel Cells (MFCs) simultaneously treating sulfide and nitrate. The MFCs are operated under four different conditions which exhibited different characteristics of electricity generation. In batch mode, MFCs generate intermittently high current pulses in the beginning, and the current density is instable subsequently, while the current density of MFCs in continuous mode is relatively stable. All operational parameters show good capacity for substrate removal, and nitrogen and sulfate were the main reaction products. Polymerase Chain Reaction-Denaturing Gradient Gel Electrophoresis (PCR-DGGE) analysis is employed to obtain profiles of the bacterial communities present in inoculum and suspension of four MFCs. Based on the community diversity indices and Spearman correlation analyses, significant correlation exists between Richness of the community of anode chamber and the electricity generated, while no strong correlation is evident between other indexes (Shannon index, Simpson index and Equitability index) and the electricity. Additionally, the results of Principal Component Analysis (PCA) suggest that MFCs suffering from current shock have similar suspension communities, while the others have diverse microbial communities.

  6. Microbial community dynamics in continuous microbial fuel cells fed with synthetic wastewater and pig slurry.

    PubMed

    Sotres, Ana; Tey, Laura; Bonmatí, August; Viñas, Marc

    2016-10-01

    Two-chambered microbial fuel cells (MFCs) operating with synthetic wastewater and pig slurry were assessed. Additionally, the use of 2-bromoethanesulfonate (BES-Inh) was studied. The synthetic wastewater-fed MFC (MFCSW) showed a maximum power density (PDmax) of 2138mWm(-3), and the addition of BES-Inh (10mM) did not show any improvement in its performance (PDmax=2078mWm(-3)). When pig slurry was used as feed (MFCPS), PDmax increased up to 5623mWm(-3). The microbial community composition was affected by the type of substrate used. While, Pseudomonadaceae and Clostridiaceae were the most representative families within the acetate-based medium, Flavobacteriaceae, Chitinophagaceae, Comamonadaceae and Nitrosomonadaceae were predominant when pig slurry was used as feed. Otherwise, only the Eubacterial microbial community composition was strongly modified when adding BES-Inh, thus leading to an enrichment of the Bacteroidetes phylum. Oppositely, the Archaeal community was less affected by the addition of BES-Inh, and Methanosarcina sp., arose as the predominant family in both situations. Despite all the differences in microbial communities, 6 operational taxonomic units (OTUs) belonging to Bacteroidetes (Porphyromonadaceae and Marinilabiaceae) and Firmicutes (Clostridiales) were found to be common to both MFCs, also for different contents of COD and N-NH4(+), and therefore could be considered as the bioanode core microbiome.

  7. Utilization of Alternate Chirality Enantiomers in Microbial Communities

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Pikuta, Elena V.; Hoover, Richard B.

    2010-01-01

    Our previous study of chirality led to interesting findings for some anaerobic extremophiles: the ability to metabolize substrates with alternate chirality enantiomers of amino acids and sugars. We have subsequently found that not just separate microbial species or strains but entire microbial communities have this ability. The functional division within a microbial community on proteo- and sugarlytic links was also reflected in a microbial diet with L-sugars and D-amino acids. Several questions are addressed in this paper. Why and when was this feature developed in a microbial world? Was it a secondary de novo adaptation in a bacterial world? Or is this a piece of genetic information that has been left in modern genomes as an atavism? Is it limited exclusively to prokaryotes, or does this ability also occur in eukaryotes? In this article, we have used a broader approach to study this phenomenon using anaerobic extremophilic strains from our laboratory collection. A series of experiments were performed on physiologically different groups of extremophilic anaerobes (pure and enrichment cultures). The following characteristics were studied: 1) the ability to grow on alternate chirality enantiomers -- L-sugars and D- amino acids; 2) Growth-inhibitory effect of alternate chirality enantiomers; 3) Stickland reaction with alternate chirality amino acids. The results of this research are presented in this paper.

  8. Microbial communities in bees, pollen and honey from Slovakia.

    PubMed

    Kacániová, Miroslava; Pavlicová, Simona; Hascík, P; Kociubinski, G; Kńazovická, Vladimíra; Sudzina, M; Sudzinová, Janka; Fikselová, Martina

    2009-09-01

    As the honey-bee gastrointestinal tract microflora and pollen are the primary sources for the honey microbial community, the aim of this work was to study and characterize the microbial transit among them. Therefore, an exhaustive microbial analysis of honey, adult honey-bee gastrointestinal tract, and pollen from different Slovakian regions and different seasons, was conducted. Microbial screening revealed that the primary sources of microbial community present in Slovakian honey are pollen and the honey-bees' digestive tract microflora, containing microorganisms normally present in dust, air and flowers. We found that the digestive tract of Slovakian adult honey-bees is highly populated by anaerobic, rather than aerobic bacteria, where coliforms, enterococci, staphylococci, Bacillus sp., Pseudomonas sp., microscopic fungi and yeast were found. Interestingly, statistical differences were found between the microflora of the gastrointestinal tract of summer and winter bees. Pollen revealed the presence of mesophil anaerobic and aerobic microorganisms, coliforms and microscopic fungi. Among these, the most representative genera were Alternaria, Cladosporium and Penicillium . In honey the counts of total anaerobic and total aerobic bacteria, that of coliforms, enterococci, bacilli, microscopic fungi and yeasts were monitored. Most frequently microscopic fungi belonging to genera Penicillium, Cladosporium and Alternaria were found.

  9. The microbial community structure of the cotton rat nose.

    PubMed

    Chaves-Moreno, Diego; Plumeier, Iris; Kahl, Silke; Krismer, Bernhard; Peschel, Andreas; Oxley, Andrew P A; Jauregui, Ruy; Pieper, Dietmar H

    2015-12-01

    The cotton rat nose is commonly used as a model for Staphylococcus aureus colonization, as it is both physiologically and anatomically comparable to the human nares and can be easily colonized by this organism. However, while the colonization of the human anterior nares has been extensively studied, the microbial community structure of cotton rat noses has not been reported so far. We describe here the microbial community structure of the cotton rat (Sigmodon hispidus) nose through next-generation sequencing of 16S rRNA gene amplicons covering the V1-V2 region and the analysis of nearly full length 16S rRNA genes of the major phylotypes. Roughly half of the microbial community was composed of two undescribed species of the genus Campylobacter, with phylotypes belonging to the genera Catonella, Acholeplasma, Streptobacillus and Capnocytophaga constituting the predominant community members. Thus, the nasal community of the cotton rat is uniquely composed of several novel bacterial species and may not reflect the complex interactions that occur in human anterior nares. Mammalian airway microbiota may, however, be a rich source of hitherto unknown microbes.

  10. Disturbance Increases Microbial Community Diversity and Production in Marine Sediments

    PubMed Central

    Galand, Pierre E.; Lucas, Sabrina; Fagervold, Sonja K.; Peru, Erwan; Pruski, Audrey M.; Vétion, Gilles; Dupuy, Christine; Guizien, Katell

    2016-01-01

    Disturbance strongly impacts patterns of community diversity, yet the shape of the diversity-disturbance relationship remains a matter of debate. The topic has been of interest in theoretical ecology for decades as it has practical implications for the understanding of ecosystem services in nature. One of these processes is the remineralization of organic matter by microorganisms in coastal marine sediments, which are periodically impacted by disturbances across the sediment-water interface. Here we set up an experiment to test the hypothesis that disturbance impacts microbial diversity and function during the anaerobic degradation of organic matter in coastal sediments. We show that during the first 3 weeks of the experiment, disturbance increased both microbial production, derived from the increase in microbial abundance, and diversity of the active fraction of the community. Both community diversity and phylogenetic diversity increased, which suggests that disturbance promoted the cohabitation of ecologically different microorganisms. Metagenome analysis also showed that disturbance increased the relative abundance of genes diagnostic of metabolism associated with the sequential anaerobic degradation of organic matter. However, community composition was not impacted in a systematic way and changed over time. In nature, we can hypothesize that moderate storm disturbances, which impact coastal sediments, promote diverse, and productive communities. These events, rather than altering the decomposition of organic matter, may increase the substrate turnover and, ultimately, remineralization rates. PMID:27994581

  11. Coupling Spatiotemporal Community Assembly Processes to Changes in Microbial Metabolism

    SciTech Connect

    Graham, Emily B.; Crump, Alex R.; Resch, Charles T.; Fansler, Sarah; Arntzen, Evan; Kennedy, David W.; Fredrickson, Jim K.; Stegen, James C.

    2016-12-16

    Community assembly processes govern shifts in species abundances in response to environmental change, yet our understanding of assembly remains largely decoupled from ecosystem function. Here, we test hypotheses regarding assembly and function across space and time using hyporheic microbial communities as a model system. We pair sampling of two habitat types through hydrologic fluctuation with null modeling and multivariate statistics. We demonstrate that dual selective pressures assimilate to generate compositional changes at distinct timescales among habitat types, resulting in contrasting associations of Betaproteobacteria and Thaumarchaeota with selection and with seasonal changes in aerobic metabolism. Our results culminate in a conceptual model in which selection from contrasting environments regulates taxon abundance and ecosystem function through time, with increases in function when oscillating selection opposes stable selective pressures. Our model is applicable within both macrobial and microbial ecology and presents an avenue for assimilating community assembly processes into predictions of ecosystem function.

  12. Quantitative phylogenetic assessment of microbial communities indiverse environments

    SciTech Connect

    von Mering, C.; Hugenholtz, P.; Raes, J.; Tringe, S.G.; Doerks,T.; Jensen, L.J.; Ward, N.; Bork, P.

    2007-01-01

    The taxonomic composition of environmental communities is an important indicator of their ecology and function. Here, we use a set of protein-coding marker genes, extracted from large-scale environmental shotgun sequencing data, to provide a more direct, quantitative and accurate picture of community composition than traditional rRNA-based approaches using polymerase chain reaction (PCR). By mapping marker genes from four diverse environmental data sets onto a reference species phylogeny, we show that certain communities evolve faster than others, determine preferred habitats for entire microbial clades, and provide evidence that such habitat preferences are often remarkably stable over time.

  13. Contrasting microbial community changes during mass extinctions at the Middle/Late Permian and Permian/Triassic boundaries

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Xie, Shucheng; Algeo, Thomas J.; Zhou, Wenfeng; Ruan, Xiaoyan; Luo, Genming; Huang, Junhua; Yan, Jiaxin

    2017-02-01

    Microbial communities are known to expand as a result of environmental deterioration during mass extinctions, but differences in microbial community changes between extinction events and their underlying causes have received little study to date. Here, we present a systematic investigation of microbial lipid biomarkers spanning ∼20 Myr (Middle Permian to Early Triassic) at Shangsi, South China, to contrast microbial changes associated with the Guadalupian-Lopingian boundary (GLB) and Permian-Triassic boundary (PTB) mass extinctions. High-resolution analysis of the PTB crisis interval reveals a distinct succession of microbial communities based on secular variation in moretanes, 2-methylhopanes, aryl isoprenoids, steranes, n-alkyl cyclohexanes, and other biomarkers. The first episode of the PTB mass extinction (ME1) was associated with increases in red algae and nitrogen-fixing bacteria along with evidence for enhanced wildfires and elevated soil erosion, whereas the second episode was associated with expansions of green sulfur bacteria, nitrogen-fixing bacteria, and acritarchs coinciding with climatic hyperwarming, ocean stratification, and seawater acidification. This pattern of microbial community change suggests that marine environmental deterioration was greater during the second extinction episode (ME2). The GLB shows more limited changes in microbial community composition and more limited environmental deterioration than the PTB, consistent with differences in species-level extinction rates (∼71% vs. 90%, respectively). Microbial biomarker records have the potential to refine our understanding of the nature of these crises and to provide insights concerning possible outcomes of present-day anthropogenic stresses on Earth's ecosystems.

  14. Unanticipated Geochemical and Microbial Community Structure under Seasonal Ice Cover in a Dilute, Dimictic Arctic Lake.

    PubMed

    Schütte, Ursel M E; Cadieux, Sarah B; Hemmerich, Chris; Pratt, Lisa M; White, Jeffrey R

    2016-01-01

    Despite most lakes in the Arctic being perennially or seasonally frozen for at least 40% of the year, little is known about microbial communities and nutrient cycling under ice cover. We assessed the vertical microbial community distribution and geochemical composition in early spring under ice in a seasonally ice-covered lake in southwest Greenland using amplicon-based sequencing that targeted 16S rRNA genes and using a combination of field and laboratory aqueous geochemical methods. Microbial communities changed consistently with changes in geochemistry. Composition of the abundant members responded strongly to redox conditions, shifting downward from a predominantly heterotrophic aerobic community in the suboxic waters to a heterotrophic anaerobic community in the anoxic waters. Operational taxonomic units (OTUs) of Sporichthyaceae, Comamonadaceae, and the SAR11 Clade had higher relative abundances above the oxycline and OTUs within the genus Methylobacter, the phylum Lentisphaerae, and purple sulfur bacteria (PSB) below the oxycline. Notably, a 13-fold increase in sulfide at the oxycline was reflected in an increase and change in community composition of potential sulfur oxidizers. Purple non-sulfur bacteria were present above the oxycline and green sulfur bacteria and PSB coexisted below the oxycline, however, PSB were most abundant. For the first time we show the importance of PSB as potential sulfur oxidizers in an Arctic dimictic lake.

  15. Unanticipated Geochemical and Microbial Community Structure under Seasonal Ice Cover in a Dilute, Dimictic Arctic Lake

    PubMed Central

    Schütte, Ursel M. E.; Cadieux, Sarah B.; Hemmerich, Chris; Pratt, Lisa M.; White, Jeffrey R.

    2016-01-01

    Despite most lakes in the Arctic being perennially or seasonally frozen for at least 40% of the year, little is known about microbial communities and nutrient cycling under ice cover. We assessed the vertical microbial community distribution and geochemical composition in early spring under ice in a seasonally ice-covered lake in southwest Greenland using amplicon-based sequencing that targeted 16S rRNA genes and using a combination of field and laboratory aqueous geochemical methods. Microbial communities changed consistently with changes in geochemistry. Composition of the abundant members responded strongly to redox conditions, shifting downward from a predominantly heterotrophic aerobic community in the suboxic waters to a heterotrophic anaerobic community in the anoxic waters. Operational taxonomic units (OTUs) of Sporichthyaceae, Comamonadaceae, and the SAR11 Clade had higher relative abundances above the oxycline and OTUs within the genus Methylobacter, the phylum Lentisphaerae, and purple sulfur bacteria (PSB) below the oxycline. Notably, a 13-fold increase in sulfide at the oxycline was reflected in an increase and change in community composition of potential sulfur oxidizers. Purple non-sulfur bacteria were present above the oxycline and green sulfur bacteria and PSB coexisted below the oxycline, however, PSB were most abundant. For the first time we show the importance of PSB as potential sulfur oxidizers in an Arctic dimictic lake. PMID:27458438

  16. Reconstructing ecosystem functions of the active microbial community of the Baltic Sea oxygen depleted sediments

    PubMed Central

    Franzetti, Andrea; Lundin, Daniel; Sjöling, Sara

    2016-01-01

    Baltic Sea deep water and sediments hold one of the largest anthropogenically induced hypoxic areas in the world. High nutrient input and low water exchange result in eutrophication and oxygen depletion below the halocline. As a consequence at Landsort Deep, the deepest point of the Baltic Sea, anoxia in the sediments has been a persistent condition over the past decades. Given that microbial communities are drivers of essential ecosystem functions we investigated the microbial community metabolisms and functions of oxygen depleted Landsort Deep sediments by metatranscriptomics. Results show substantial expression of genes involved in protein metabolism demonstrating that the Landsort Deep sediment microbial community is active. Identified expressed gene suites of metabolic pathways with importance for carbon transformation including fermentation, dissimilatory sulphate reduction and methanogenesis were identified. The presence of transcripts for these metabolic processes suggests a potential for heterotrophic-autotrophic community synergism and indicates active mineralisation of the organic matter deposited at the sediment as a consequence of the eutrophication process. Furthermore, cyanobacteria, probably deposited from the water column, are transcriptionally active in the anoxic sediment at this depth. Results also reveal high abundance of transcripts encoding integron integrases. These results provide insight into the activity of the microbial community of the anoxic sediment at the deepest point of the Baltic Sea and its possible role in ecosystem functioning. PMID:26823996

  17. PLFA analyses of microbial communities associated with PAH-contaminated riverbank sediment.

    PubMed

    Pratt, Brenda; Riesen, Roland; Johnston, Carl G

    2012-10-01

    Sediment contaminated with polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) is widely distributed in aquatic ecosystems. The microbial community structure of riverbank PAH-contaminated sediments was investigated using phospholipid-derived fatty acid (PLFA) analysis. Surface and subsurface riverbank sediment was collected from a highly contaminated site and from an uncontaminated site along the Mahoning River, OH. PAH concentrations, physical sediment characteristics, and other microbial community parameters (biomass as phospholipid phosphate (PLP) and activity) were also measured. PAHs were detected in all samples but were only quantifiable in the contaminated (250 μg/g g(-1)) subsurface sediment. Subsurface samples from both locations showed very similar PLP values and distribution of PLFAs, with 27-37 % of the microbial community structure being composed of sulfate reducing and other anaerobic bacteria. Principal components analysis indicated no correlation between PAH contamination and PLFA diversity. Although PLP and phospholipid fatty acid measurements of bacterial communities did not reflect the environmental differences among sites, the highly PAH-contaminated sediment showed the highest measured microbial activity (reduction of 1,200 nmol INT g(-1) h(-1)), likely from a population adapted to environmental pollutants, rates that are much higher than measured in many uncontaminated soil and sediment systems. These data warrant further investigation into community structure at the genetic level and indicate potential for bioremediation by indigenous microbes.

  18. Chronic Exposure Effects of Silver Nanoparticles on Stream Microbial Decomposer Communities and Ecosystem Functions.

    PubMed

    Tlili, Ahmed; Jabiol, Jérémy; Behra, Renata; Gil-Allué, Carmen; Gessner, Mark O

    2017-02-21

    With the accelerated use of silver nanoparticles (AgNP) in commercial products, streams will increasingly serve as recipients of, and repositories for, AgNP. This raises concerns about the potential toxicity of these nanomaterials in the environment. Here we aimed to assess the impacts of chronic AgNP exposure on the metabolic activities and community structure of fungal and bacterial plant litter decomposers as central players in stream ecosystems. Minimal variation in the size and surface charge of AgNP indicated that nanoparticles were rather stable during the experiment. Five days of exposure to 0.05 and 0.5 μM AgNP in microcosms shifted bacterial community structure but had no effect on a suite of microbial metabolic activities, despite silver accumulation in the decomposing leaf litter. After 25 days, however, a broad range of microbial endpoints, as well as rates of litter decomposition, were strongly affected. Declines matched with the total silver concentration in the leaves and were accompanied by changes in fungal and bacterial community structure. These results highlight a distinct sensitivity of litter-associated microbial communities in streams to chronic AgNP exposure, with effects on both microbial functions and community structure resulting in notable ecosystem consequences through impacts on litter decomposition and further biogeochemical processes.

  19. High-solids enrichment of thermophilic microbial communities and their enzymes on bioenergy feedstocks

    SciTech Connect

    Reddy, A. P.; Allgaier, M.; Singer, S.W.; Hazen, T.C.; Simmons, B.A.; Hugenholtz, P.; VanderGheynst, J.S.

    2011-04-01

    Thermophilic microbial communities that are active in a high-solids environment offer great potential for the discovery of industrially relevant enzymes that efficiently deconstruct bioenergy feedstocks. In this study, finished green waste compost was used as an inoculum source to enrich microbial communities and associated enzymes that hydrolyze cellulose and hemicellulose during thermophilic high-solids fermentation of the bioenergy feedstocks switchgrass and corn stover. Methods involving the disruption of enzyme and plant cell wall polysaccharide interactions were developed to recover xylanase and endoglucanase activity from deconstructed solids. Xylanase and endoglucanase activity increased by more than a factor of 5, upon four successive enrichments on switchgrass. Overall, the changes for switchgrass were more pronounced than for corn stover; solids reduction between the first and second enrichments increased by a factor of four for switchgrass while solids reduction remained relatively constant for corn stover. Amplicon pyrosequencing analysis of small-subunit ribosomal RNA genes recovered from enriched samples indicated rapid changes in the microbial communities between the first and second enrichment with the simplified communities achieved by the third enrichment. The results demonstrate a successful approach for enrichment of unique microbial communities and enzymes active in a thermophilic high-solids environment.

  20. Influence of geogenic factors on microbial communities in metallogenic Australian soils

    PubMed Central

    Reith, Frank; Brugger, Joel; Zammit, Carla M; Gregg, Adrienne L; Goldfarb, Katherine C; Andersen, Gary L; DeSantis, Todd Z; Piceno, Yvette M; Brodie, Eoin L; Lu, Zhenmei; He, Zhili; Zhou, Jizhong; Wakelin, Steven A

    2012-01-01

    Links between microbial community assemblages and geogenic factors were assessed in 187 soil samples collected from four metal-rich provinces across Australia. Field-fresh soils and soils incubated with soluble Au(III) complexes were analysed using three-domain multiplex-terminal restriction fragment length polymorphism, and phylogenetic (PhyloChip) and functional (GeoChip) microarrays. Geogenic factors of soils were determined using lithological-, geomorphological- and soil-mapping combined with analyses of 51 geochemical parameters. Microbial communities differed significantly between landforms, soil horizons, lithologies and also with the occurrence of underlying Au deposits. The strongest responses to these factors, and to amendment with soluble Au(III) complexes, was observed in bacterial communities. PhyloChip analyses revealed a greater abundance and diversity of Alphaproteobacteria (especially Sphingomonas spp.), and Firmicutes (Bacillus spp.) in Au-containing and Au(III)-amended soils. Analyses of potential function (GeoChip) revealed higher abundances of metal-resistance genes in metal-rich soils. For example, genes that hybridised with metal-resistance genes copA, chrA and czcA of a prevalent aurophillic bacterium, Cupriavidus metallidurans CH34, occurred only in auriferous soils. These data help establish key links between geogenic factors and the phylogeny and function within soil microbial communities. In particular, the landform, which is a crucial factor in determining soil geochemistry, strongly affected microbial community structures. PMID:22673626

  1. Structural and metabolic responses of microbial community to sewage-borne chlorpyrifos in constructed wetlands.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Dan; Wang, Chuan; Zhang, Liping; Xu, Dong; Liu, Biyun; Zhou, Qiaohong; Wu, Zhenbin

    2016-06-01

    Long-term use of chlorpyrifos poses a potential threat to the environment that cannot be ignored, yet little is known about the succession of substrate microbial communities in constructed wetlands (CWs) under chlorpyrifos stress. Six pilot-scale CW systems receiving artificial wastewater containing 1mg/L chlorpyrifos were established to investigate the effects of chlorpyrifos and wetland vegetation on the microbial metabolism pattern of carbon sources and community structure, using BIOLOG and denaturing gradient gel electrophoresis (DGGE) approaches. Based on our samples, BIOLOG showed that Shannon diversity (H') and richness (S) values distinctly increased after 30days when chlorpyrifos was added. At the same time, differences between the vegetated and the non-vegetated systems disappeared. DGGE profiles indicated that H' and S had no significant differences among four different treatments. The effect of chlorpyrifos on the microbial community was mainly reflected at the physiological level. Principal component analysis (PCA) of both BIOLOG and DGGE showed that added chlorpyrifos made a difference on test results. Meanwhile, there was no difference between the vegetation and no-vegetation treatments after addition of chlorpyrifos at the physiological level. Moreover, the vegetation had no significant effect on the microbial community at the genetic level. Comparisons were made between bacteria in this experiment and other known chlorpyrifos-degrading bacteria. The potential chlorpyrifos-degrading ability of bacteria in situ may be considerable.

  2. Ecogenomics of microbial communities in bioremediation of chlorinated contaminated sites

    PubMed Central

    Maphosa, Farai; Lieten, Shakti H.; Dinkla, Inez; Stams, Alfons J.; Smidt, Hauke; Fennell, Donna E.

    2012-01-01

    Organohalide compounds such as chloroethenes, chloroethanes, and polychlorinated benzenes are among the most significant pollutants in the world. These compounds are often found in contamination plumes with other pollutants such as solvents, pesticides, and petroleum derivatives. Microbial bioremediation of contaminated sites, has become commonplace whereby key processes involved in bioremediation include anaerobic degradation and transformation of these organohalides by organohalide respiring bacteria and also via hydrolytic, oxygenic, and reductive mechanisms by aerobic bacteria. Microbial ecogenomics has enabled us to not only study the microbiology involved in these complex processes but also develop tools to better monitor and assess these sites during bioremediation. Microbial ecogenomics have capitalized on recent advances in high-throughput and -output genomics technologies in combination with microbial physiology studies to address these complex bioremediation problems at a system level. Advances in environmental metagenomics, transcriptomics, and proteomics have provided insights into key genes and their regulation in the environment. They have also given us clues into microbial community structures, dynamics, and functions at contaminated sites. These techniques have not only aided us in understanding the lifestyles of common organohalide respirers, for example Dehalococcoides, Dehalobacter, and Desulfitobacterium, but also provided insights into novel and yet uncultured microorganisms found in organohalide respiring consortia. In this paper, we look at how ecogenomic studies have aided us to understand the microbial structures and functions in response to environmental stimuli such as the presence of chlorinated pollutants. PMID:23060869

  3. Unique pioneer microbial communities exposed to volcanic sulfur dioxide.

    PubMed

    Fujimura, Reiko; Kim, Seok-Won; Sato, Yoshinori; Oshima, Kenshiro; Hattori, Masahira; Kamijo, Takashi; Ohta, Hiroyuki

    2016-01-21

    Newly exposed volcanic substrates contain negligible amounts of organic materials. Heterotrophic organisms in newly formed ecosystems require bioavailable carbon and nitrogen that are provided from CO2 and N2 fixation by pioneer microbes. However, the knowledge of initial ecosystem developmental mechanisms, especially the association between microbial succession and environmental change, is still limited. This study reports the unique process of microbial succession in fresh basaltic ash, which was affected by long-term exposure to volcanic sulfur dioxide (SO2). Here we compared the microbial ecosystems among deposits affected by SO2 exposure at different levels. The results of metagenomic analysis suggested the importance of autotrophic iron-oxidizing bacteria, particularly those involved in CO2 and N2 fixation, in the heavily SO2 affected site. Changes in the chemical properties of the deposits after the decline of the SO2 impact led to an apparent decrease in the iron-oxidizer abundance and a possible shift in the microbial community structure. Furthermore, the community structure of the deposits that had experienced lower SO2 gas levels showed higher similarity with that of the control forest soil. Our results implied that the effect of SO2 exposure exerted a selective pressure on the pioneer community structure by changing the surrounding environment of the microbes.

  4. Unique pioneer microbial communities exposed to volcanic sulfur dioxide

    PubMed Central

    Fujimura, Reiko; Kim, Seok-Won; Sato, Yoshinori; Oshima, Kenshiro; Hattori, Masahira; Kamijo, Takashi; Ohta, Hiroyuki

    2016-01-01

    Newly exposed volcanic substrates contain negligible amounts of organic materials. Heterotrophic organisms in newly formed ecosystems require bioavailable carbon and nitrogen that are provided from CO2 and N2 fixation by pioneer microbes. However, the knowledge of initial ecosystem developmental mechanisms, especially the association between microbial succession and environmental change, is still limited. This study reports the unique process of microbial succession in fresh basaltic ash, which was affected by long-term exposure to volcanic sulfur dioxide (SO2). Here we compared the microbial ecosystems among deposits affected by SO2 exposure at different levels. The results of metagenomic analysis suggested the importance of autotrophic iron-oxidizing bacteria, particularly those involved in CO2 and N2 fixation, in the heavily SO2 affected site. Changes in the chemical properties of the deposits after the decline of the SO2 impact led to an apparent decrease in the iron-oxidizer abundance and a possible shift in the microbial community structure. Furthermore, the community structure of the deposits that had experienced lower SO2 gas levels showed higher similarity with that of the control forest soil. Our results implied that the effect of SO2 exposure exerted a selective pressure on the pioneer community structure by changing the surrounding environment of the microbes. PMID:26791101

  5. Unique pioneer microbial communities exposed to volcanic sulfur dioxide

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fujimura, Reiko; Kim, Seok-Won; Sato, Yoshinori; Oshima, Kenshiro; Hattori, Masahira; Kamijo, Takashi; Ohta, Hiroyuki

    2016-01-01

    Newly exposed volcanic substrates contain negligible amounts of organic materials. Heterotrophic organisms in newly formed ecosystems require bioavailable carbon and nitrogen that are provided from CO2 and N2 fixation by pioneer microbes. However, the knowledge of initial ecosystem developmental mechanisms, especially the association between microbial succession and environmental change, is still limited. This study reports the unique process of microbial succession in fresh basaltic ash, which was affected by long-term exposure to volcanic sulfur dioxide (SO2). Here we compared the microbial ecosystems among deposits affected by SO2 exposure at different levels. The results of metagenomic analysis suggested the importance of autotrophic iron-oxidizing bacteria, particularly those involved in CO2 and N2 fixation, in the heavily SO2 affected site. Changes in the chemical properties of the deposits after the decline of the SO2 impact led to an apparent decrease in the iron-oxidizer abundance and a possible shift in the microbial community structure. Furthermore, the community structure of the deposits that had experienced lower SO2 gas levels showed higher similarity with that of the control forest soil. Our results implied that the effect of SO2 exposure exerted a selective pressure on the pioneer community structure by changing the surrounding environment of the microbes.

  6. Microbial community and performance of slaughterhouse wastewater treatment filters.

    PubMed

    Stets, M I; Etto, R M; Galvão, C W; Ayub, R A; Cruz, L M; Steffens, M B R; Barana, A C

    2014-06-16

    The performance of anaerobic filter bioreactors (AFs) is influenced by the composition of the substrate, support medium, and the microbial species present in the sludge. In this study, the efficiency of a slaughterhouse effluent treatment using three AFs containing different support media was tested, and the microbial diversity was investigated by amplified ribosomal DNA restriction analysis and 16S rRNA gene sequencing. The physicochemical analysis of the AF systems tested suggested their feasibility, with rates of chemical oxygen demand removal of 72±8% in hydraulic retention times of 1 day. Analysis of pH, alkalinity, volatile acidity, total solids, total volatile solids, total Kjeldahl nitrogen, and the microbial community structures indicated high similarity among the three AFs. The composition of prokaryotic communities showed a prevalence of Proteobacteria (27.3%) and Bacteroidetes (18.4%) of the Bacteria domain and Methanomicrobiales (36.4%) and Methanosarcinales (35.3%) of the Archaea domain. Despite the high similarity of the microbial communities among the AFs, the reactor containing pieces of clay brick as a support medium presented the highest richness and diversity of bacterial and archaeal operational taxonomic units.

  7. Physico-chemical gradients within the hydrothermal chimney Roane define sharp boundaries for microbial community ecology

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Frank, K. L.; Kelley, D. S.; Girguis, P. R.

    2011-12-01

    The unique physico-chemical gradients characteristic of hydrothermal vents provide diverse niches for prokaryotic communities. To date, our knowledge of environmental constraints on microbial colonization and metabolic activity within active sulfide structures has been limited by the lack of co-registered in situ chemistry and appropriate, taxonomic and metabolic genetic markers. Here we characterize de novo endolithic microbial colonization using a sulfide microbial incubator within the hydrothermal vent Roane during a one-year deployment, with co-registered temperature, fluid chemistry and mineralogy. Taxanomic assessment of phylogenetic diversity via 16S rDNA extracted from the outer (40-70°C) and middle (150-240°C) chambers of the incubator revealed patterns of distribution comparable to previously published observations. However, quantitative and statistical analyses of 16S rDNA sequences from two chambers revealed very distinct communities, with less than 5% of the identified operational taxonomic units common to both chambers. Analyses of metagenomic data suggest an elevated potential for motility and select biosynthetic pathways in the outer chamber community. In contrast, the middle chamber community exhibits a greater potential for quorum sensing, biofilm formation and archaeal lipid biosynthesis. Striking differences in metabolic potential were also apparent. These data suggest that the distribution, abundance and physiological capacity of these communities is strongly governed by chemical and physical variability of the environment.

  8. Unravelling Microbial Communities with DNA-Microarrays: Challengesand Future Directions.

    SciTech Connect

    Wagner, Michael; Smidt, Hauke; Loy, Alexander; Zhou, Jizhong

    2007-03-08

    High-throughput technologies are urgently needed formonitoring the formidable biodiversity and functional capabilities ofmicroorganisms in the environment. Ten years ago, DNA microarrays,miniaturized platforms for highly parallel hybridization reactions, foundtheir way into environmental microbiology and raised great expectationsamong researchers in the field. In this article, we briefly summarize thestate-of-the-art of microarray approaches in microbial ecology researchand discuss in more detail crucial problems and promising solutions.Finally, we outline scenarios for an innovative combination ofmicroarrays with other molecular tools for structure-function analysis ofcomplex microbial communities.

  9. Methane dynamics regulated by microbial community response to permafrost thaw.

    PubMed

    McCalley, Carmody K; Woodcroft, Ben J; Hodgkins, Suzanne B; Wehr, Richard A; Kim, Eun-Hae; Mondav, Rhiannon; Crill, Patrick M; Chanton, Jeffrey P; Rich, Virginia I; Tyson, Gene W; Saleska, Scott R

    2014-10-23

    Permafrost contains about 50% of the global soil carbon. It is thought that the thawing of permafrost can lead to a loss of soil carbon in the form of methane and carbon dioxide emissions. The magnitude of the resulting positive climate feedback of such greenhouse gas emissions is still unknown and may to a large extent depend on the poorly understood role of microbial community composition in regulating the metabolic processes that drive such ecosystem-scale greenhouse gas fluxes. Here we show that changes in vegetation and increasing methane emissions with permafrost thaw are associated with a switch from hydrogenotrophic to partly acetoclastic methanogenesis, resulting in a large shift in the δ(13)C signature (10-15‰) of emitted methane. We used a natural landscape gradient of permafrost thaw in northern Sweden as a model to investigate the role of microbial communities in regulating methane cycling, and to test whether a knowledge of community dynamics could improve predictions of carbon emissions under loss of permafrost. Abundance of the methanogen Candidatus 'Methanoflorens stordalenmirensis' is a key predictor of the shifts in methane isotopes, which in turn predicts the proportions of carbon emitted as methane and as carbon dioxide, an important factor for simulating the climate feedback associated with permafrost thaw in global models. By showing that the abundance of key microbial lineages can be used to predict atmospherically relevant patterns in methane isotopes and the proportion of carbon metabolized to methane during permafrost thaw, we establish a basis for scaling changing microbial communities to ecosystem isotope dynamics. Our findings indicate that microbial ecology may be important in ecosystem-scale responses to global change.

  10. Soil microbial community analysis of between no-till and tillage in a controlled horticultural field.

    PubMed

    Yang, Seung Koo; Kim, Min Keun; Seo, Youn Won; Choi, Kyung Ju; Lee, Seong Tae; Kwak, Youn-Sig; Lee, Young Han

    2012-04-01

    The present study evaluated the changes of soil microbial communities that were subjected to no-till and compared the results to those subject to tillage for organic farming in a controlled horticultural field by fatty acid methyl ester. Fungi (P < 0.001), gram-positive bacteria (P < 0.001), arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi (P < 0.01), and actinomycetes (P < 0.01) in the no-till soils were significantly larger than those in the tillage soils. The no-till in the subsoil had a significantly lower ratio of cy17:0 to 16:1ω7c compared to that of tillage, indicating that microbial stress decreased because the soils were not disturbed (P < 0.05). Fungi should be considered as a potential factor responsible for the obvious microbial community differentiation that was observed between the no-till and tillage areas in a controlled horticultural field.

  11. Effects of Triclosan and biosolids on microbial community composition in an agricultural soil

    PubMed Central

    Ogunyoku, Temitope A.; Young, Thomas M.; Scow, Kate M.

    2014-01-01

    Triclosan (TCS) is a widely used antimicrobial agent found at high concentrations in biosolids produced during municipal wastewater treatment. The effect of adding TCS, in the presence or absence of biosolids, on the composition of an agricultural soil microbial community was measured using phospholipid fatty acid analysis (PLFA). Most changes observed in microbial community composition were attributable to addition of biosolids or passage of time, with smaller changes due to TCS exposure, regardless of the biosolids presence. TCS slightly reduced the relative abundance of Gram positive and negative bacteria and fungi, both with or without biosolids. Bacteria were more sensitive than eukaryotes, consistent with the mode of action of TCS, which selectively targets fatty acid synthesis and disrupts cell membranes of bacteria. TCS slightly increased biomarkers of microbial stress, but stress biomarkers were lower in all biosolid treated soils, presumably due to increased availability of nutrients mitigating potential TCS toxicity. PMID:24597039

  12. The Effect of Dilution on the Structure of Microbial Communities

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Mills, Aaron L.

    2000-01-01

    To determine how dilution of microbial communities affects the diversity of the diluted assemblage a series of numerical simulations were conducted that determined the theoretical change in diversity, richness, and evenness of the community with serial dilution. The results of the simulation suggested that the effects are non linear with a high degree of dependence on the initial evenness of the community being diluted. A series of incubation experiments using a range of dilutions of raw sewage as an inoculum into sterile sewage was used for comparison to the simulations. The diluted communities were maintained in batch fed reactors (three day retention time) for nine days. The communities were harvested and examined by conventional plating and by molecular analysis of the whole-community DNA using AFLP and T-RFLP. Additional, CLPP analysis was also applied. The effects on richness predicted by the numerical simulations were confirmed by the analyses used. The diluted communities fell into three groups, a low dilution, intermediate dilution, and high dilution group, which corresponded well with the groupings obtained for community richness in simulation. The grouping demonstrated the non-linear nature of dilution of whole communities. Furthermore, the results implied that the undiluted community consisted of a few dominant types accompanied by a number of rare (low abundance) types as is typical in unevenly distributed communities.

  13. Serpentinization-Influenced Groundwater Harbors Extremely Low Diversity Microbial Communities Adapted to High pH

    PubMed Central

    Twing, Katrina I.; Brazelton, William J.; Kubo, Michael D. Y.; Hyer, Alex J.; Cardace, Dawn; Hoehler, Tori M.; McCollom, Tom M.; Schrenk, Matthew O.

    2017-01-01

    Serpentinization is a widespread geochemical process associated with aqueous alteration of ultramafic rocks that produces abundant reductants (H2 and CH4) for life to exploit, but also potentially challenging conditions, including high pH, limited availability of terminal electron acceptors, and low concentrations of inorganic carbon. As a consequence, past studies of serpentinites have reported low cellular abundances and limited microbial diversity. Establishment of the Coast Range Ophiolite Microbial Observatory (California, U.S.A.) allowed a comparison of microbial communities and physicochemical parameters directly within serpentinization-influenced subsurface aquifers. Samples collected from seven wells were subjected to a range of analyses, including solute and gas chemistry, microbial diversity by 16S rRNA gene sequencing, and metabolic potential by shotgun metagenomics, in an attempt to elucidate what factors drive microbial activities in serpentinite habitats. This study describes the first comprehensive interdisciplinary analysis of microbial communities in hyperalkaline groundwater directly accessed by boreholes into serpentinite rocks. Several environmental factors, including pH, methane, and carbon monoxide, were strongly associated with the predominant subsurface microbial communities. A single operational taxonomic unit (OTU) of Betaproteobacteria and a few OTUs of Clostridia were the almost exclusive inhabitants of fluids exhibiting the most serpentinized character. Metagenomes from these extreme samples contained abundant sequences encoding proteins associated with hydrogen metabolism, carbon monoxide oxidation, carbon fixation, and acetogenesis. Metabolic pathways encoded by Clostridia and Betaproteobacteria, in particular, are likely to play important roles in the ecosystems of serpentinizing groundwater. These data provide a basis for further biogeochemical studies of key processes in serpentinite subsurface environments. PMID:28298908

  14. Serpentinization-Influenced Groundwater Harbors Extremely Low Diversity Microbial Communities Adapted to High pH.

    PubMed

    Twing, Katrina I; Brazelton, William J; Kubo, Michael D Y; Hyer, Alex J; Cardace, Dawn; Hoehler, Tori M; McCollom, Tom M; Schrenk, Matthew O

    2017-01-01

    Serpentinization is a widespread geochemical process associated with aqueous alteration of ultramafic rocks that produces abundant reductants (H2 and CH4) for life to exploit, but also potentially challenging conditions, including high pH, limited availability of terminal electron acceptors, and low concentrations of inorganic carbon. As a consequence, past studies of serpentinites have reported low cellular abundances and limited microbial diversity. Establishment of the Coast Range Ophiolite Microbial Observatory (California, U.S.A.) allowed a comparison of microbial communities and physicochemical parameters directly within serpentinization-influenced subsurface aquifers. Samples collected from seven wells were subjected to a range of analyses, including solute and gas chemistry, microbial diversity by 16S rRNA gene sequencing, and metabolic potential by shotgun metagenomics, in an attempt to elucidate what factors drive microbial activities in serpentinite habitats. This study describes the first comprehensive interdisciplinary analysis of microbial communities in hyperalkaline groundwater directly accessed by boreholes into serpentinite rocks. Several environmental factors, including pH, methane, and carbon monoxide, were strongly associated with the predominant subsurface microbial communities. A single operational taxonomic unit (OTU) of Betaproteobacteria and a few OTUs of Clostridia were the almost exclusive inhabitants of fluids exhibiting the most serpentinized character. Metagenomes from these extreme samples contained abundant sequences encoding proteins associated with hydrogen metabolism, carbon monoxide oxidation, carbon fixation, and acetogenesis. Metabolic pathways encoded by Clostridia and Betaproteobacteria, in particular, are likely to play important roles in the ecosystems of serpentinizing groundwater. These data provide a basis for further biogeochemical studies of key processes in serpentinite subsurface environments.

  15. Exploring ancient microbial community assemblages by creating complex lipid biomarker profiles for stromatolites and microbial mats in Hamelin Pool, Shark Bay, Australia

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Myers, E.; Summons, R. E.; Schubotz, F.; Matys, E. D.

    2015-12-01

    Stromatolites that are biogenic in origin, a characteristic that can be determined by the coexistence of microbial mats (active microbial communities) and stromatolites (lithified structures) like in Hamelin Pool, comprise one of the best modern analogs to ancient microbial community assemblages. Comprehensive lipid biomarker profiles that include lipids of varying persistence in the rock record can help determine how previously living microbial communities are represented in lithified stromatolites. To create these profiles, the samples analyzed included non-lithified smooth, pustular, and colloform microbial mats, as well as smooth and colloform stromatolites. Select samples were separated into upper and lower layers of 5cm depth each. Intact polar lipids, glycerol dialkyl glycerol tetraethers, and bacteriohopanepolyols were analyzed via liquid chromatography-mass spectrometry (LC-MS) coupled to a Quadropole Time-of-Flight (QTOF) mass spectrometer; additionally, fatty acids from each sample were analyzed using gas chromatography-mass spectrometry (GC-MS) to prove consistent signatures with those determined by Allen et al. in 2010 for similar microbial mat samples. In accordance with those findings, 2-methylhopanoids were detected, as well as limited signals from higher (vascular) plants, the latter of which suggests terrestrial inputs, potentially from runoff. The rarely detected presence of 3-methylhopanoids appears in a significant portion of the samples, though further isolations of the molecule are needed to confirm. While all lipid profiles were relatively similar, certain differences in relative composition are likely attributable to morphological differences of the mats, some of which allow deeper oxygen and/or sunlight penetration, which influence the microbial community. However, overall similarities of transient and persistent lipids suggest that the microbial communities of both the non-lithified microbial mats and stromatolites are similar.

  16. Dynamic changes in microbial community structure and function in phenol-degrading microcosms inoculated with cells from a contaminated aquifer.

    PubMed

    Elliott, David R; Scholes, Julie D; Thornton, Steven F; Rizoulis, Athanasios; Banwart, Steven A; Rolfe, Stephen A

    2010-02-01

    Contamination of aquifers by organic pollutants threatens groundwater supplies and the environment. In situ biodegradation of organic pollutants by microbial communities is important for the remediation of contaminated sites, but our understanding of the relationship between microbial development and pollutant biodegradation is poor. A particular challenge is understanding the in situ status of microorganisms attached to solid surfaces, but not accessible via conventional sampling of groundwater. We have developed novel flow-through microcosms and examined dynamic changes in microbial community structure and function in a phenol-degrading system. Inoculation of these microcosms with a complex microbial community from a plume in a phenol-contaminated aquifer led to the initial establishment of a population dominated by a few species, most attached to the solid substratum. Initially, phenol biodegradation was incomplete, but as the microbial community structure became more complex, phenol biodegradation was more extensive and complete. These results were replicated between independent microcosms, indicating a deterministic succession of species. This work demonstrates the importance of examining community dynamics when assessing the potential for microbial biodegradation of organic pollutants. It provides a novel system in which such measurements can be made readily and reproducibly to study the temporal development and spatial succession of microbial communities during biodegradation of organic pollutants at interfaces within such environments.

  17. Exploring the Impacts of Anthropogenic Disturbance on Seawater and Sediment Microbial Communities in Korean Coastal Waters Using Metagenomics Analysis

    PubMed Central

    Won, Nam-Il; Kim, Ki-Hwan; Kang, Ji Hyoun; Park, Sang Rul; Lee, Hyuk Je

    2017-01-01

    The coastal ecosystems are considered as one of the most dynamic and vulnerable environments under various anthropogenic developments and the effects of climate change. Variations in the composition and diversity of microbial communities may be a good indicator for determining whether the marine ecosystems are affected by complex forcing stressors. DNA sequence-based metagenomics has recently emerged as a promising tool for analyzing the structure and diversity of microbial communities based on environmental DNA (eDNA). However, few studies have so far been performed using this approach to assess the impacts of human activities on the microbial communities in marine systems. In this study, using metagenomic DNA sequencing (16S ribosomal RNA gene), we analyzed and compared seawater and sediment communities between sand mining and control (natural) sites in southern coastal waters of Korea to assess whether anthropogenic activities have significantly affected the microbial communities. The sand mining sites harbored considerably lower levels of microbial diversities in the surface seawater community during spring compared with control sites. Moreover, the sand mining areas had distinct microbial taxonomic group compositions, particularly during spring season. The microbial groups detected solely in the sediment load/dredging areas (e.g., Marinobacter, Alcanivorax, Novosphingobium) are known to be involved in degradation of toxic chemicals such as hydrocarbon, oil, and aromatic compounds, and they also contain potential pathogens. This study highlights the versatility of metagenomics in monitoring and diagnosing the impacts of human disturbance on the environmental health of marine ecosystems from eDNA. PMID:28134828

  18. From lithotroph- to organotroph-dominant: directional shift of microbial community in sulphidic tailings during phytostabilization

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Li, Xiaofang; Bond, Philip L.; van Nostrand, Joy D.; Zhou, Jizhong; Huang, Longbin

    2015-08-01

    Engineering microbial diversity to enhance soil functions may improve the success of direct revegetation in sulphidic mine tailings. Therefore, it is essential to explore how remediation and initial plant establishment can alter microbial communities, and, which edaphic factors control these changes under field conditions. A long-term revegetation trial was established at a Pb-Zn-Cu tailings impoundment in northwest Queensland. The control and amended and/or revegetated treatments were sampled from the 3-year-old trial. In total, 24 samples were examined using pyrosequencing of 16S rRNA genes and various chemical properties. The results showed that the microbial diversity was positively controlled by soil soluble Si and negatively controlled by soluble S, total Fe and total As, implying that pyrite weathering posed a substantial stress on microbial development in the tailings. All treatments were dominated by typical extremophiles and lithotrophs, typically Truepera, Thiobacillus, Rubrobacter; significant increases in microbial diversity, biomass and frequency of organotrophic genera (typically Nocardioides and Altererythrobacter) were detected in the revegetated and amended treatment. We concluded that appropriate phytostabilization options have the potential to drive the microbial diversity and community structure in the tailings toward those of natural soils, however, inherent environmental stressors may limit such changes.

  19. From lithotroph- to organotroph-dominant: directional shift of microbial community in sulphidic tailings during phytostabilization

    PubMed Central

    Li, Xiaofang; Bond, Philip L.; Van Nostrand, Joy D.; Zhou, Jizhong; Huang, Longbin

    2015-01-01

    Engineering microbial diversity to enhance soil functions may improve the success of direct revegetation in sulphidic mine tailings. Therefore, it is essential to explore how remediation and initial plant establishment can alter microbial communities, and, which edaphic factors control these changes under field conditions. A long-term revegetation trial was established at a Pb-Zn-Cu tailings impoundment in northwest Queensland. The control and amended and/or revegetated treatments were sampled from the 3-year-old trial. In total, 24 samples were examined using pyrosequencing of 16S rRNA genes and various chemical properties. The results showed that the microbial diversity was positively controlled by soil soluble Si and negatively controlled by soluble S, total Fe and total As, implying that pyrite weathering posed a substantial stress on microbial development in the tailings. All treatments were dominated by typical extremophiles and lithotrophs, typically Truepera, Thiobacillus, Rubrobacter; significant increases in microbial diversity, biomass and frequency of organotrophic genera (typically Nocardioides and Altererythrobacter) were detected in the revegetated and amended treatment. We concluded that appropriate phytostabilization options have the potential to drive the microbial diversity and community structure in the tailings toward those of natural soils, however, inherent environmental stressors may limit such changes. PMID:26268667

  20. The effect of resource history on the functioning of soil microbial communities is maintained across time

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Keiser, A. D.; Strickland, M. S.; Fierer, N.; Bradford, M. A.

    2011-02-01

    Historical resource conditions appear to influence microbial community function. With time, historical influences might diminish as populations respond to the contemporary environment. Alternatively, they may persist given factors such as contrasting genetic potentials for adaptation to a new environment. Using experimental microcosms, we test competing hypotheses that function of distinct soil microbial communities in common environments (H1a) converge or (H1b) remain dissimilar over time. Using a 6 × 2 (soil community inoculum × litter environment) full-factorial design, we compare decomposition rates in experimental microcosms containing grass or hardwood litter environments. After 100 days, communities that develop are inoculated into fresh litters and decomposition followed for another 100 days. We repeat this for a third, 100-day period. In each successive, 100-day period, we find higher decomposition rates (i.e. functioning) suggesting communities function better when they have an