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Microb Ecol. 2003 May;45(4):317-28. Epub 2003 Apr 28.

Diversity of ribulose-1,5-bisphosphate carboxylase/oxygenase large-subunit genes from groundwater and aquifer microorganisms.

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Department of Environmental Microbiology, UFZ Centre for Environmental Research, Leipzig 04318, Germany.


To test our hypothesis that microbial autotrophic CO2 fixation plays an important role in subsurface systems of two large groundwater remediation projects, several anaerobic/microaerobic aquifer and groundwater samples were taken and used to investigate the distribution and phylogenetic diversity of ribulose-1,5-bisphosphate carboxylase/oxygenase (RubisCO) large-subunit genes. Two primer sets were designed for amplifying partial-subunit genes of RubisCO forms I and II from the DNA, directly extracted from the samples. PCR products were used to construct five clone libraries with putative RubisCO form I sequences, and two libraries of DNA amplified by form II primers. Selected clones were screened for variation by restriction fragment length polymorphism analysis, and a total of 28 clone inserts were sequenced and further analyzed. The phylogenies constructed from amino acid sequences derived from the partial RubisCO large-subunit sequences showed a distinct pattern. Diverse sequences affiliated to the cluster of green-like type IA RubisCO sequences were found, representing various obligate and facultative chemolithoautotrophic Proteobacteria, whereas type II RubisCO sequences detected were most closely related to those of thiobacilli species. An isolate obtained from aquifer enrichment culture, which has been provisionally named Halothiobacillus sp. RA13 on the basis of its 16S rDNA sequence, was found to contain both types of RubisCO genes, i.e., forms I and II. Physiological and ecological considerations are discussed in the context of additional microbial data and physicochemical properties.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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