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Open Access Publications from the University of California

Properties of bacterial communities attached to artificial substrates in a hypereutrophic urban river.

  • Author(s): Cai, Xianlei
  • Yao, Ling
  • Sheng, Qiyue
  • Jiang, Luyao
  • Dahlgren, Randy A
  • Wang, Ting
  • et al.

Bacterial communities of biofilms growing on artificial substrates were examined at two time periods (7 and 14 days) and two locations (lentic and lotic areas) in a hypereutrophic urban river of eastern China. Previous studies in this river network indicated that variations of microbial communities were the major factor affecting the distribution of antibiotic resistant genes highlighting the importance of understanding controls of microbial communities. Bacterial communities associated with biofilms were determined using epifluorescence microscopy and high-throughput sequencing. Results showed that sampling time and site had significant effects on the abundances of surface-associated bacteria. No significant differences were found in the number of surface-associated bacteria between two substrate types (filament vs. slide). Sequencing revealed microbial communities attached to artificial substrates in a hypereutrophic urban river were composed of 80,375 OTUs, and distributed in 47 phyla. Proteobacteria and Cyanobacteria/Chloroplast were the two dominant phyla, followed by Planctomycetes, Actinobacteria, Verrucomicrobia, Firmicutes and Bacteroidetes. Taxonomic composition showed ammonia-oxidizing microorganisms, fecal indicator bacteria and pathogens enriched in attached microbial communities, especially the ammonia-oxidizing Nitrosomonas bacteria. These results indicated that there were significant temporal and intra-river heterogeneity of attached microbial community structure, but no significant difference in community composition was detected between the two substrate types.

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