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Analysis of cbbL, nifH, and pufLM in soils from the Sør Rondane Mountains, Antarctica, reveals a large diversity of autotrophic and phototrophic bacteria
Tahon, G.; Tytgat, B.; Stragier, P.; Willems, A. (2016). Analysis of cbbL, nifH, and pufLM in soils from the Sør Rondane Mountains, Antarctica, reveals a large diversity of autotrophic and phototrophic bacteria. Environ. Microbiol. 71(1): 131-149. https://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s00248-015-0704-6
In: Environmental Microbiology. Blackwell Scientific Publishers: Oxford. ISSN 1462-2912; e-ISSN 1462-2920, meer
Peer reviewed article  

Beschikbaar in  Auteurs 
    VLIZ: Open Repository 305692 [ OMA ]

Author keywords
    Antarctica RuBisCO nifH pufLM Bacteria Clone libraries

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Abstract
    Cyanobacteria are generally thought to be responsible for primary production and nitrogen fixation in the microbial communities that dominate Antarctic ecosystems. Recent studies of bacterial communities in terrestrial Antarctica, however, have shown that Cyanobacteria are sometimes only scarcely present, suggesting that other bacteria presumably take over their role as primary producers and diazotrophs. The diversity of key genes in these processes was studied in surface samples from the Sør Rondane Mountains, Dronning Maud Land, using clone libraries of the large subunit of ribulose-1,5-biphosphate carboxylase/oxygenase (RuBisCO) genes (cbbL, cbbM) and dinitrogenase-reductase (nifH) genes. We recovered a large diversity of non-cyanobacterial cbbL type IC in addition to cyanobacterial type IB, suggesting that non-cyanobacterial autotrophs may contribute to primary production. The nifH diversity recovered was predominantly related to Cyanobacteria, particularly members of the Nostocales. We also investigated the occurrence of proteorhodopsin and anoxygenic phototrophy as mechanisms for non-Cyanobacteria to exploit solar energy. While proteorhodopsin genes were not detected, a large diversity of genes coding for the light and medium subunits of the type 2 phototrophic reaction center (pufLM) was observed, suggesting for the first time, that the aerobic photoheterotrophic lifestyle may be important in oligotrophic high-altitude ice-free terrestrial Antarctic habitats.

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