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Appl Environ Microbiol. 2013 Oct;79(19):5927-35. doi: 10.1128/AEM.02251-13. Epub 2013 Jul 19.

Bacterial community response to petroleum hydrocarbon amendments in freshwater, marine, and hypersaline water-containing microcosms.

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Laboratório de Genética Microbiana, Instituto de Microbiologia Paulo de Góes.


Hydrocarbon-degrading bacterial communities from freshwater, marine, and hypersaline Brazilian aquatic ecosystems (with water salinities corresponding to 0.2%, 4%, and 5%, respectively) were enriched with different hydrocarbons (heptadecane, naphthalene, or crude oil). Changes within the different microcosms of bacterial communities were analyzed using cultivation approaches and molecular methods (DNA and RNA extraction, followed by genetic fingerprinting and analyses of clone libraries based on the 16S rRNA-coding gene). A redundancy analysis (RDA) of the genetic fingerprint data and a principal component analysis (PCA) of the clone libraries revealed hydrocarbon-enriched bacterial communities specific for each ecosystem studied. However, within the same ecosystem, different bacterial communities were selected according to the petroleum hydrocarbon used. In general, the results demonstrated that Acinetobacter and Cloacibacterium were the dominant genera in freshwater microcosms; the Oceanospirillales order and the Marinobacter, Pseudomonas, and Cycloclasticus genera predominated in marine microcosms; and the Oceanospirillales order and the Marinobacter genus were selected in the different hydrocarbon-containing microcosms in hypersaline water. Determination of total petroleum hydrocarbons (TPHs) in all microcosms after 32 days of incubation showed a decrease in the hydrocarbon concentration compared to that for the controls. A total of 50 (41.3%) isolates from the different hydrocarbon-contaminated microcosms were associated with the dominant operational taxonomic units (OTUs) obtained from the clone libraries, and their growth in the hydrocarbon contaminating the microcosm from which they were isolated as the sole carbon source was observed. These data provide insight into the general response of bacterial communities from freshwater, marine, and hypersaline aquatic ecosystems to petroleum hydrocarbon contamination.

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