Project description:Nitrification, the microbial oxidation of ammonia to nitrate via nitrite, occurs in a wide range of acidic soils. However, the ammonia-oxidizing bacteria (AOB) that have been isolated from soil to date are acid-sensitive. Here we report the isolation and characterization of an acid-adapted AOB from an acidic agricultural soil. The isolated AOB, strain TAO100, is classified within the Gammaproteobacteria based on phylogenetic characteristics. TAO100 can grow in the pH range of 5-7.5 and survive in highly acidic conditions until pH 2 by forming cell aggregates. Whereas all known gammaproteobacterial AOB (?-AOB) species, which have been isolated from marine and saline aquatic environments, are halophiles, TAO100 is not phenotypically halophilic. Thus, TAO100 represents the first soil-originated and non-halophilic ?-AOB. The TAO100 genome is considerably smaller than those of other ?-AOB and lacks several genes associated with salt tolerance which are unnecessary for survival in soil. The ammonia monooxygenase subunit A gene of TAO100 and its transcript are higher in abundance than those of ammonia-oxidizing archaea and betaproteobacterial AOB in the strongly acidic soil. These results indicate that TAO100 plays an important role in the nitrification of acidic soils. Based on these results, we propose TAO100 as a novel species of a new genus, Candidatus Nitrosoglobus terrae.
Project description:BACKGROUND:Generally, extremophiles have been deemed to survive in the extreme environments to which they had adapted to grow. Recently many extremophiles have been isolated from places where they are not expected to grow. Alkaliphilic microorganisms have been isolated from acidic soil samples with pH 4.0, and thermophiles have been isolated from samples of low temperature. Numerous moderately halophilic microorganisms, defined as those that grow optimally in media containing 0.5-2.5 Molar (3-15%) NaCl, and halotolerant microorganisms that are able to grow in media without added NaCl and in the presence of high NaCl have been isolated from saline environments such as salterns, salt lakes and sea sands. It has tacitly been believed that habitats of halophiles able to grow in media containing more than 20% (3.4 M) are restricted to saline environments, and no reports have been published on the isolation of halophiles from ordinary garden soil samples. RESULTS:We demonstrated that many halophilic bacteria that are able to grow in the presence of 20% NaCl are inhabiting in non-saline environments such as ordinary garden soils, yards, fields and roadways in an area surrounding Tokyo, Japan. Analyses of partial 16S rRNA gene sequences of 176 isolates suggested that they were halophiles belonging to genera of the family Bacillaceae, Bacillus (11 isolates), Filobacillus (19 isolates), Gracilibacillus (6 isolates), Halobacillus (102 isolates), Lentibacillus (1 isolate), Paraliobacillus (5 isolates) and Virgibacillus (17 isolates). Sequences of 15 isolates showed similarities less than 92%, suggesting that they may represent novel taxa within the family Bacillaceae. CONCLUSION:The numbers of total bacteria of inland soil samples were in a range from 1.4 x 10(7)/g to 1.1 x 10(6)/g. One tenth of the total bacteria was occupied by endospore-forming bacteria. Only very few of the endospore-forming bacteria, roughly 1 out of 20,000, are halophilic bacteria. Most of the halophilic bacteria were surviving as endospores in the soil samples, in a range of less than 1 to about 500/g soil. Samples collected from seashore in a city confronting Tokyo Bay gave the total numbers of bacteria and endospores roughly 1000 time smaller than those of inland soil samples. Numbers of halophilic bacteria per gram, however, were almost the same as those of inland soil samples. A possible source of the halophilic endospore originating from Asian dust storms is discussed.
Project description:Halophiles are excellent sources of enzymes that are not only salt stable but also can withstand and carry out reactions efficiently under extreme conditions. The aim of the study was to isolate and study the diversity among halophilic bacteria producing enzymes of industrial value. Screening of halophiles from various saline habitats of India led to isolation of 108 halophilic bacteria producing industrially important hydrolases (amylases, lipases and proteases). Characterization of 21 potential isolates by morphological, biochemical and 16S rRNA gene analysis found them related to Marinobacter, Virgibacillus, Halobacillus, Geomicrobium, Chromohalobacter, Oceanobacillus, Bacillus, Halomonas and Staphylococcus genera. They belonged to moderately halophilic group of bacteria exhibiting salt requirement in the range of 3-20%. There is significant diversity among halophiles from saline habitats of India. Preliminary characterization of crude hydrolases established them to be active and stable under more than one extreme condition of high salt, pH, temperature and presence of organic solvents. It is concluded that these halophilic isolates are not only diverse in phylogeny but also in their enzyme characteristics. Their enzymes may be potentially useful for catalysis under harsh operational conditions encountered in industrial processes. The solvent stability among halophilic enzymes seems a generic novel feature making them potentially useful in non-aqueous enzymology.
Project description:Soil salinity is an increasing problem facing agriculture in many parts of the world. Climate change and irrigation practices have led to decreased yields of some farmland due to increased salt levels in the soil. Plants that have tolerance to salt are thus needed to feed the world's population. One approach addressing this problem is genetic engineering to introduce genes encoding salinity, but this approach has limitations. Another fairly new approach is the isolation and development of salt-tolerant (halophilic) plant-associated bacteria. These bacteria are used as inoculants to stimulate plant growth. Several reports are now available, demonstrating how the use of halophilic inoculants enhance plant growth in salty soil. However, the mechanisms for this growth stimulation are as yet not clear. Enhanced growth in response to bacterial inoculation is expected to be associated with changes in plant gene expression. In this review, we discuss the current literature and approaches for analyzing altered plant gene expression in response to inoculation with halophilic bacteria. Additionally, challenges and limitations to current approaches are analyzed. A further understanding of the molecular mechanisms involved in enhanced plant growth when inoculated with salt-tolerant bacteria will significantly improve agriculture in areas affected by saline soils.
Project description:The isolation and characterization of a novel halophilic denitrifying marine bacterium is described. The halophilic bacterium, designated as NY-4, was isolated from soil in Yancheng City, China, and identified as Marinobacter hydrocarbonoclasticus by 16S rRNA gene sequence phylogenetic analysis. This organism can grow in NaCl concentrations ranging from 20 to 120 g/L. Optimum growth occurs at 80 g/L NaCl and pH 8.0. The organism can grow on a broad range of carbon sources and demonstrated efficient denitrifying ability (94.2% of nitrate removal and 80.9% of total nitrogen removal in 48 h). During denitrification by NY-4, no NO2 (-)-N was accumulated, N2 was the only gaseous product and no harmful N2O was produced. Because of its rapid denitrification ability, broad carbon use range and ability to grow under high salinity and pH conditions, NY-4 holds promise for the treatment of saline waste waters.