Association of running manner with bacterial community dynamics in a partial short-term nitrifying bioreactor for treatment of piggery wastewater with high ammonia content.
ABSTRACT: Optimization of running parameters in a bioreactor requires detailed understanding of microbial community dynamics during the startup and running periods. Using a novel piggery wastewater treatment system termed "UASB + SHARON + ANAMMOX" constructed in our laboratory, we investigated microbial community dynamics using the Illumina MiSeq method, taking activated sludge samples at ~2-week intervals during a ~300-day period. Ammonia-oxidizing bacteria (AOB) were further investigated by quantification of AOB amoA genes and construction of gene clone libraries. Major changes in bacterial community composition and dynamics occurred when running manner was changed from continuous flow manner (CFM) to sequencing batch manner (SBM), and when effluent from an upflow anaerobic sludge blanket (UASB) reactor for practical treatment of real piggery wastewater was used as influent; differences among these three experimental groups were significant (R (2) = 0.94, p < 0.01). When running manner was changed from CFM to SBM, relative abundance of the genus Nitrospira decreased sharply from 18.1 % on day 116 to 1.5 % on day 130, and to undetectable level thereafter. Relative abundance of the genus Nitrosomonas increased from ~0.67 % during the CFM period to 8.0 % by day 220, and thereafter decreased to a near-constant ~1.6 %. Environmental factors such as load ammonia, effluent ammonia, effluent nitrite, UASB effluent, pH, and DO levels collectively drove bacterial community dynamics and contributed to maintenance of effluent NH4 (+)-N/NO2 (-)-N ratio ~1. Theses results might provide useful clues for the control of the startup processes and maintaining high efficiency of such bioreactors.
Project description:Bacterial community dynamics of the ANAMMOX reactor of an integrated "UASB?+?SHARON?+?ANAMMOX" system for treating piggery wastewater were investigated using the Illumina MiSeq method with samples obtained at ~?2-week intervals during a 314-day period. With aerobic activated sludge as seeds and low content artificial wastewater (NH4+-N 50 mg/L; NO2--N 55 mg/L) as influent for the ANAMMOX reactor, nitrogen removal was initially observed on day 38 with a removal rate 1.3 mg N L-1 day-1, and increased to 90.4 mg N L-1 day-1 on day 55 with almost complete removal of ammonia and nitrite, indicating a successful startup of the reactor. Increasing influent load stepwise to NH4+-N 272.7 mg/L/NO2--N 300 mg/L, nitrogen removal rate increased gradually to 470 mg N L-1 day-1 on day 228, and maintained a stable level (~?420 mg N L-1 day-1) following introduction of SHARON effluent since day 229. Correlation between microbial community dynamics and nitrogen removal capability was significant (r?=?0.489, p?<?0.001). Microbial community composition was determined by influent ammonia, influent nitrite, effluent nitrate and some undefined factors. Anammox bacteria, accounting for?~?98.7% of Planctomycetes, became detectable (0.03% relative abundance) since day 38 and increased to 0.9% on day 58, well consistent with nitrogen removal performance of the reactor. Relative abundance of anammox bacteria gradually increased to 38.4% on day 140 with stepwise increased influent load; decreased to 0.4% on day 169 because of nitrite inhibition; increased to 19.24% on day 233 when the influent load was dropped; kept at?~?9.0% with SHARON effluent used as influent and dropped to 3.3% finally. Anammox bacteria, only Candidatus Brocadia and Ca. Kuenenia detected, were the most abundant at genus level. Ca. Brocadia related taxa were enriched firstly under low load and detectable during the entire experimental period. Three main groups represented by Ca. Brocadia related OTUs were enriched or eliminated at different loads, but Ca. Kuenenia related taxa were enriched only under high load (NO2--N?>?300 mg/L), suggesting their different niches and application for different loads. These findings improve the understanding of relationships among microbial community/functional taxa, running parameters and reactor performance, and will be useful in optimizing running parameters for rapid startup and high, stable efficiency.
Project description:BACKGROUND: Chemoautotrophic ammonia oxidizing bacteria (AOB) have the metabolic ability to oxidize ammonia to nitrite aerobically. This metabolic feature has been widely used, in combination with denitrification, to remove nitrogen from wastewater in wastewater treatment plants (WWTPs). However, the relative influence of specific deterministic environmental factors to AOB community dynamics in WWTP is uncertain. The ecological principles underlying AOB community dynamics and nitrification stability and how they are related are also poorly understood. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: The community dynamics of ammonia oxidizing bacteria (AOB) in a pilot-scale WWTP were monitored over a one-year period by Terminal Restriction Fragment Length Polymorphism (T-RFLP). During the study period, the effluent ammonia concentrations were almost below 2 mg/L, except for the first 60 days, indicting stable nitrification. T-RFLP results showed that, during the test period with stable nitrification, the AOB community structures were not stable, and the average change rate (every 15 days) of AOB community structures was 10% ± 8%. The correlations between T-RFLP profiles and 10 operational and environmental parameters were tested by Canonical Correlation Analysis (CCA) and Mantel test. The results indicated that the dynamics of AOB community correlated most strongly with Dissolved Oxygen (DO), effluent ammonia, effluent Biochemical Oxygen Demand (BOD) and temperature. CONCLUSIONS/SIGNIFICANCE: This study suggests that nitrification stability is not necessarily accompanied by a stable AOB community, and provides insight into parameters controlling the AOB community dynamics within bioreactors with stable nitrification.
Project description:The effect of effluent irrigation on community composition and function of ammonia-oxidizing bacteria (AOB) in soil was evaluated, using techniques of molecular biology and analytical soil chemistry. Analyses were conducted on soil sampled from lysimeters and from a grapefruit orchard which had been irrigated with wastewater effluent or fertilizer-amended water (FAW). Specifically, comparisons of AOB community composition were conducted using denaturing gradient gel electrophoresis (DGGE) of PCR-amplified fragments of the gene encoding the alpha-subunit of the ammonia monooxygenase gene (amoA) recovered from soil samples and subsequent sequencing of relevant bands. A significant and consistent shift in the population composition of AOB was detected in soil irrigated with effluent. This shift was absent in soils irrigated with FAW, despite the fact that the ammonium concentration in the FAW was similar. At the end of the irrigation period, Nitrosospira-like populations were dominant in soils irrigated with FAW, while Nitrosomonas-like populations were dominant in effluent-irrigated soils. Furthermore, DGGE analysis of the amoA gene proved to be a powerful tool in evaluating the soil AOB community population and population shifts therein.
Project description:The Grand River (Ontario, Canada) is impacted by wastewater treatment plants (WWTPs) that release ammonia (NH3 and NH4+) into the river. In-river microbial communities help transform this ammonia into more oxidized compounds (e.g., NO3- or N2), although the spatial distribution and relative abundance of freshwater autotrophic ammonia-oxidizing prokaryotes (AOP) are not well characterized. This study investigated freshwater N cycling within the Grand River, focusing on sediment and water columns, both inside and outside a WWTP effluent plume. The diversity, relative abundance, and nitrification activity of AOP were investigated by denaturing gradient gel electrophoresis (DGGE), quantitative real-time PCR (qPCR), and reverse transcriptase qPCR (RT-qPCR), targeting both 16S rRNA and functional genes, together with activity assays. The analysis of bacterial 16S rRNA gene fingerprints showed that the WWTP effluent strongly affected autochthonous bacterial patterns in the water column but not those associated with sediment nucleic acids. Molecular and activity data demonstrated that ammonia-oxidizing archaea (AOA) were numerically and metabolically dominant in samples taken from outside the WWTP plume, whereas ammonia-oxidizing bacteria (AOB) dominated numerically within the WWTP effluent plume. Potential nitrification rate measurements supported the dominance of AOB activity in downstream sediment. Anaerobic ammonia-oxidizing (anammox) bacteria were detected primarily in sediment nucleic acids. In-river AOA patterns were completely distinct from effluent AOA patterns. This study demonstrates the importance of combined molecular and activity-based studies for disentangling molecular signatures of wastewater effluent from autochthonous prokaryotic communities.
Project description:The Seine River is strongly affected by the effluents from the Acheres wastewater treatment plant (WWTP) downstream of the city of Paris. We have shown that the effluents introduce large amounts of ammonia and inoculate the receiving medium with nitrifying bacteria. The aim of the present study was to investigate the diversity of the ammonia-oxidizing bacterial population by identifying autochthonous bacteria from upstream and/or allochthonous ammonia-oxidizing bacteria from the WWTP effluents. Measurements of potential nitrifying activity, competitive PCR, and denaturing gradient gel electrophoresis (DGGE) of 16S ribosomal DNA fragments specific to ammonia-oxidizing bacteria (AOB) were used to explore the succession and shifts of the ammonia-oxidizing community in the lower Seine River and to analyze the temporal and spatial functioning of the system at several different sampling dates. A major revelation was the stability of the patterns. The CTO primers used in this study (G. A. Kowalchuk, J. R. Stephen, W. D. Boer, J. I. Prosser, T. M. Embley, and J. W. Woldendorp, Appl. Environ. Microbiol. 63:1489-1497, 1997) were shown not to be completely specific to AOB of the beta subclass of Proteobacteria. We further demonstrated that when DGGE patterns are interpreted, all the different bands must be sequenced, as one major DGGE band proved to be affiliated with a group of non-AOB in the beta subclass of Proteobacteria. The majority of AOB (75 to 90%) present in the lower Seine river downstream of the effluent output belong to lineage 6a, represented by Nitrosomonas oligotropha- and Nitrosomonas ureae-like bacteria. This dominant lineage was represented by three bands on the DGGE gel. The major lineage-6a AOB species, introduced by the WWTP effluents, survived and might have grown in the receiving medium far downstream, in the estuary; it represented about 40% of the whole AOB population. The other two species belonging to lineage 6a seem to be autochthonous bacteria. One of them developed a few kilometers downstream of the WWTP effluent input in an ammonia-enriched environment, and the other appeared in the freshwater part of the estuary and was apparently more adapted to estuarine conditions, i.e., an increase in the amount of suspended matter, a low ammonia concentration, and high turnover of organic matter. The rest of the AOB population was represented in equal proportions by Nitrosospira- and Nitrosococcus mobilis-like species.
Project description:A pilot-scale multilayer rapid infiltration system (MRIS) for domestic wastewater treatment was established and efficient removal of ammonia and chemical oxygen demand (COD) was achieved in this study. The microbial community composition and abundance of ammonia oxidizers were investigated. Efficient biofilms of ammonia oxidizers in the stationary phase (packing material) was formed successfully in the MRIS without special inoculation. DGGE and phylogenetic analyses revealed that proteobacteria dominated in the MRIS. Relative abundance of ammonia-oxidizing archaea (AOA) and ammonia-oxidizing bacteria (AOB) showed contrary tendency. In the flowing phase (water effluent), AOA diversity was significantly correlated with the concentration of dissolve oxygen (DO), NO3-N and NH3-N. AOB abundance was significantly correlated with the concentration of DO and chemical oxygen demand (COD). NH3-N and COD were identified as the key factors to shape AOB community structure, while no variable significantly correlated with that of AOA. AOA might play an important role in the MRIS. This study could reveal key environmental factors affecting the community composition and abundance of ammonia oxidizers in the MRIS.
Project description:Current methods determining biomass yield require sophisticated sensors for in situ measurements or multiple steady-state reactor runs. Determining the yield of specific groups of organisms in mixed cultures in a fast and easy manner remains challenging. This study describes a fast method to estimate the maximum biomass yield (Ymax), based on 13C incorporation during activity measurements. It was applied to mixed cultures containing ammonia oxidizing bacteria (AOB) or archaea (AOA) and nitrite oxidizing bacteria (NOB), grown under mesophilic (15-28°C) and thermophilic (50°C) conditions. Using this method, no distinction could be made between AOB and AOA co-existing in a community. A slight overestimation of the nitrifier biomass due to 13C redirection via SMP to heterotrophs could occur, meaning that this method determines the carbon fixation activity of the autotrophic microorganisms rather than the actual nitrifier biomass yield. Thermophilic AOA yields exceeded mesophilic AOB yields (0.22 vs. 0.06-0.11 g VSS g-1 N), possibly linked to a more efficient pathway for CO2 incorporation. NOB thermophilically produced less biomass (0.025-0.028 vs. 0.048-0.051 g VSS g-1 N), conceivably attributed to higher maintenance requirement, rendering less energy available for biomass synthesis. Interestingly, thermophilic nitrification yield was higher than its mesophilic counterpart, due to the dominance of AOA over AOB at higher temperatures. An instant temperature increase impacted the mesophilic AOB yield, corroborating the effect of maintenance requirement on production capacity. Model simulations of two realistic nitrification/denitrification plants were robust toward changing nitrifier yield in predicting effluent ammonium concentrations, whereas sludge composition was impacted. Summarized, a fast, precise and easily executable method was developed determining Ymax of ammonia and nitrite oxidizers in mixed communities.
Project description:Ammonia oxidation is the rate limiting step in nitrification and thus have an important role in removal of ammonia in natural and engineered systems with participation of both ammonia-oxidizing archaea (AOA) and ammonia-oxidizing bacteria (AOB). However, their relative distribution and activity in fish processing effluent treatment plants (FPETPs) though significant, is hitherto unreported. Presence of AOA in sludge samples obtained from FPETPs was studied by amplification and sequencing of thaumarchaeal ammonia monooxygenase subunit A (AOA-amoA) gene. Different primer sets targeting 16S rRNA and AOA-amoA gene were used for the detection of AOA in FPETPs. Phylogenetic analysis of the gene revealed that the AOA was affiliated with thaumarchaeal group 1.1a lineage (marine cluster). Quantitative real time PCR of amoA gene was used to study the copy number of AOA and AOB in FPETPs. The AOA-amoA and AOB-amoA gene copy numbers of sludge samples ranged from 2.2 × 10(6) to 4.2 × 10(8) and 1.1 × 10(7) to 8.5 × 10(8) mg(-1) sludge respectively. Primer sets Arch-amoAF/Arch-amoAR and 340F/1000R were found to be useful for the sensitive detection of AOA-amoA and Archaeal 16S rRNA genes respectively in FPETPs. Their presence suggests the widespread occurrence and possible usefulness in removing ammonia from FPETPs which is in line with reports from other waste water treatment plants.
Project description:The effects of the lengths of aeration and nonaeration periods on nitrogen removal and the nitrifying bacterial community structure were assessed in intermittently aerated (IA) reactors treating digested swine wastewater. Five IA reactors were operated in parallel with different aeration-to-nonaeration time ratios (ANA). Populations of ammonia-oxidizing bacteria (AOB) and nitrite-oxidizing bacteria (NOB) were monitored using 16S rRNA slot blot hybridizations. AOB species diversity was assessed using amoA gene denaturant gradient gel electrophoresis. Nitrosomonas and Nitrosococcus mobilis were the dominant AOB and Nitrospira spp. were the dominant NOB in all reactors, although Nitrosospira and Nitrobacter were also detected at lower levels. Reactors operated with the shortest aeration time (30 min) showed the highest Nitrosospira rRNA levels, and reactors operated with the longest anoxic periods (3 and 4 h) showed the lowest levels of Nitrobacter, compared to the other reactors. Nitrosomonas sp. strain Nm107 was detected in all reactors, regardless of the reactor's performance. Close relatives of Nitrosomonas europaea, Nitrosomonas sp. strain ENI-11, and Nitrosospira multiformis were occasionally detected in all reactors. Biomass fractions of AOB and effluent ammonia concentrations were not significantly different among the reactors. NOB were more sensitive than AOB to long nonaeration periods, as nitrite accumulation and lower total NOB rRNA levels were observed for an ANA of 1 h:4 h. The reactor with the longest nonaeration time of 4 h performed partial nitrification, followed by denitrification via nitrite, whereas the other reactors removed nitrogen through traditional nitrification and denitrification via nitrate. Superior ammonia removal efficiencies were not associated with levels of specific AOB species or with higher AOB species diversity.
Project description:Organic compounds such as methanol are widely used for enhancing denitrification at wastewater treatment plants (WWTPs) to meet effluent water quality permits. On the other hand, methane, which is the main feedstock for industrial methanol production, is also generated during anaerobic digestion in WWTPs, but is often flared to mitigate its greenhouse impacts. The overarching goal herein was to develop a novel continuous process for methanol production from methane using nitrifying activated sludge. The maximum AOB specific methanol production rate using hydroxylamine as electron donor was 1.61 ± 0.15 and 1.27 ± 0.15 mg-COD-CH3OH/(mg-COD-AOB*d), for hydraulic retention times (HRTs) of 7.5 h and 2 h, respectively. The corresponding production rate using ammonia as electron donor was 0.31 ± 0.08 mg-COD-CH3OH/(mg-COD-AOB*d) at a HRT of 2 h. These results show that nitrifier-mediated methanol production in a continuous-flow system can enhance the efficiency of WWTPs through internal production of biomethanol for denitrification, while simultaneously minimizing wasteful biogas flaring.