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Analysis of methane-producing and metabolizing archaeal and bacterial communities in sediments of the northern South China Sea and coastal Mai Po Nature Reserve revealed by PCR amplification of mcrA and pmoA genes.


ABSTRACT: Communities of methanogens, anaerobic methanotrophic archaea and aerobic methanotrophic bacteria (MOB) were compared by profiling polymerase chain reaction (PCR)-amplified products of mcrA and pmoA genes encoded by methyl-coenzyme M reductase alpha subunit and particulate methane monooxygenase alpha subunit, respectively, in sediments of northern South China Sea (nSCS) and Mai Po mangrove wetland. Community structures representing by mcrA gene based on 12 clone libraries from nSCS showed separate clusters indicating niche specificity, while, Methanomicrobiales, Methanosarcinales clades 1,2, and Methanomassiliicoccus-like groups of methanogens were the most abundant groups in nSCS sediment samples. Novel clusters specific to the SCS were identified and the phylogeny of mcrA gene-harboring archaea was updated. Quantitative polymerase chain reaction was used to detect mcrA gene abundance in all samples: similar abundance of mcrA gene in the surface layers of mangrove (3.4?3.9 × 10(6) copies per gram dry weight) and of intertidal mudflat (5.5?5.8 × 10(6) copies per gram dry weight) was observed, but higher abundance (6.9 × 10(6) to 1.02 × 10(8) copies per gram dry weight) was found in subsurface samples of both sediment types. Aerobic MOB were more abundant in surface layers (6.7?11.1 × 10(5) copies per gram dry weight) than the subsurface layers (1.2?5.9 × 10(5) copies per gram dry weight) based on pmoA gene. Mangrove surface layers harbored more abundant pmoA gene than intertidal mudflat, but less pmoA genes in the subsurface layers. Meanwhile, it is also noted that in surface layers of all samples, more pmoA gene copies were detected than the subsurface layers. Reedbed rhizosphere exhibited the highest gene abundance of mcrA gene (8.51 × 10(8) copies per gram dry weight) and pmoA gene (1.56 × 10(7) copies per gram dry weight). This study investigated the prokaryotic communities responsible for methane cycling in both marine and coastal wetland ecosystems, showing the distribution characteristics of mcrA gene-harboring communities in nSCS and stratification of mcrA and pmoA gene diversity and abundance in the Mai Po Nature Reserve.

SUBMITTER: Zhou Z 

PROVIDER: S-EPMC4343527 | BioStudies | 2014-01-01

REPOSITORIES: biostudies

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