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Can J Microbiol. 2007 Jan;53(1):8-18.

Haloarchaeal communities in the crystallizers of two adriatic solar salterns.

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  • 1Department of Biology, Biotechnical Faculty, University of Ljubljana, Slovenia. lejla.pasic@bf.uni-lj.si


Solar salterns operate only for short dry periods of the year in the north shore of the Adriatic Sea because of its relatively humid and cold Mediterranean climate. In a previous paper, we showed that the NaCl precipitation ponds (crystallizers) of Northern Adriatic Secovlje salterns have different haloarchaeal populations from those typically found in dry and hot climates such as Southern Spain. To check whether there is a common pattern of haloarchaeal diversity in these less extreme conditions, diversity in crystallizers of other Adriatic solar salterns in Ston, Croatia was ascertained by molecular and culture methods. In addition, the cultivation approach was used to further describe haloarchaeal diversity in both salterns. Over the period of two solar salt collection seasons, isolates related to species of the genera Haloferax, Haloarcula, and Haloterrigena were recovered from both salterns. Within the same sampling effort, relatives of the genus Halorubrum and a Natrinema-like isolate were cultivated from Slovenian Secovlje salterns while Halobacterium related isolates were obtained from the Croatian Ston salterns. Concurrent with our previous findings, a library of Croatian saltern crystallizer PCR-amplified 16S rRNA genes was dominated by sequences related to the genus Halorubrum. The microbial community structure was similar in both salterns but diversity indices showed greater values in Slovenian salterns when compared with Croatian salterns.

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