Detritus-dependent development of the microbial community in an experimental system: qualitative analysis by denaturing gradient gel electrophoresis

E.J. Van Hannen, W.M. Mooij, M.P. Van Agterveld, H.J. Gons, H.J. Laanbroek

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    185 Citations (Scopus)


    Correlations between the biomass of phytoplankton and the biomass of bacteria and, between the biomass of bacteria and the biomass of protozoans suggest that there is coupling between these compartments of the "microbial loop." To investigate this coupling on the species level, bacteria and protozoans from untreated lake water inocula were allowed to grow on detritus of the green alga Ankistrodesmus falcatus or the cyanobacterium Oscillatoria limnetica in continuous-flow systems for 1 month. Denaturing gradient gel electrophoresis (DGGE) of the 16S and 18S rRNA genes was used. to monitor the development of the bacterial community structure and the eukaryotic community structure, respectively. Nonmetric multidimensional scaling of the DGGE profiles revealed the changes in the microbial community structure. This analysis showed that significantly different bacterial communities developed on the green algal detritus and on the cyanobacterial detritus. Although similar results were obtained for the eukaryotic communities,the differences were not significant. Hence, our findings indicate that the origin of detritus can affect the structure of at least the bacterial community. A phylogenetic analysis of 20 18S ribosomal DNA clones that were isolated from the continuous cultures revealed that many sequences were related to the sequences of bacterivorous protozoans (members:of the Ciliophora, Rhizopoda, Amoeba, and Kinetoplastida). One clone grouped in a recently established clade whose previously described members are all parasites. The affiliations of about 20% of the clones could not be determined. [KEYWORDS: ALGAL EXTRACELLULAR PRODUCTS; DISSOLVED ORGANIC-CARBON; FRESH-WATER; BACTERIAL UTILIZATION; PHYTOPLANKTON; MARINE; BACTERIOPLANKTON; DECOMPOSITION; POPULATIONS; METABOLISM]
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)2478-2484
    JournalApplied and Environmental Microbiology
    Issue number6
    Publication statusPublished - 1999


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