Spatio-temporal dynamics of sulfate-reducing bacteria in extreme environment of Rogoznica Lake revealed by 16S rRNA analysis

Research paper by Milan Čanković, Ines Petrić, Marija Marguš, Irena Ciglenečki

Indexed on: 21 Mar '17Published on: 06 Mar '17Published in: Journal of Marine Systems


Highly eutrophic and euxinic seawater system of Rogoznica Lake (Croatia) was used as a study site for investigation of distribution, diversity and abundance of sulfate-reducing bacteria (SRB) during stratified conditions in the summer and winter season, by targeting 6 phylogenetic subgroups of SRB. 16S rRNA gene sequences indicated that community cannot be directly related to cultured SRB species but rather that Rogoznica Lake harbors habitat-specific SRB populations associated to bacteria belonging to δ-Proteobacteria with few Firmicutes and Verrucomicrobium-related populations. Clear spatial-temporal shifts in the SRB community structure were observed. Results implied existence of distinct SRB populations between the water column and sediment, as well as higher diversity of the SRB occupying water layer then the ones found in the sediment. Likewise, seasonal variations in populations were observed. While SRB community was more diverse in the winter compared to the summer season in the water layer, situation was opposite in the sediment. Water layer communities seem to be more susceptible to changes of physico-chemical parameters, while those in the sediment have prorogated response to these changes. Results indicate that SRB diversity is still highly underestimated in natural environments, especially in specific habitats such as Rogoznica Lake. Presented data show a complex SRB diversity and distribution supporting the idea that habitat-specific SRB communities are important part of the anaerobic food chain in degradation of organic matter as well as cycling of sulfur and carbon species in the Lake and similar anoxic environment.

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