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Appl Environ Microbiol. 2006 Dec;72(12):7857-63. Epub 2006 Oct 20.

Diverse responses to UV-B radiation and repair mechanisms of bacteria isolated from high-altitude aquatic environments.

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Planta Piloto de Procesos Industriales Microbiológicos, Consejo Nacional de Investigaciones Científicas y Técnicas, Av. Belgrano y Pje. Caseros, 4000 Tucumán, Argentina.


Acinetobacter johnsonii A2 isolated from the natural community of Laguna Azul (Andean Mountains at 4,560 m above sea level), Serratia marcescens MF42, Pseudomonas sp. strain MF8 isolated from the planktonic community, and Cytophaga sp. strain MF7 isolated from the benthic community from Laguna Pozuelos (Andean Puna at 3,600 m above sea level) were subjected to UV-B (3,931 J m-2) irradiation. In addition, a marine Pseudomonas putida strain, 2IDINH, and a second Acinetobacter johnsonii strain, ATCC 17909, were used as external controls. Resistance to UV-B and kinetic rates of light-dependent (UV-A [315 to 400 nm] and cool white light [400 to 700 nm]) and -independent reactivation following exposure were determined by measuring the survival (expressed as CFU) and accumulation of cyclobutane pyrimidine dimers (CPD). Significant differences in survival after UV-B irradiation were observed: Acinetobacter johnsonii A2, 48%; Acinetobacter johnsonii ATCC 17909, 20%; Pseudomonas sp. strain MF8, 40%; marine Pseudomonas putida strain 2IDINH, 12%; Cytophaga sp. strain MF7, 20%; and Serratia marcescens, 21%. Most bacteria exhibited little DNA damage (between 40 and 80 CPD/Mb), except for the benthic isolate Cytophaga sp. strain MF7 (400 CPD/Mb) and Acinetobacter johnsonii ATCC 17909 (160 CPD/Mb). The recovery strategies through dark and light repair were different in all strains. The most efficient in recovering were both Acinetobacter johnsonii A2 and Cytophaga sp. strain MF7; Serratia marcescens MF42 showed intermediate recovery, and in both Pseudomonas strains, recovery was essentially zero. The UV-B responses and recovery abilities of the different bacteria were consistent with the irradiation levels in their native environment.

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