Project description:BACKGROUND:The deep mechanisms (deterministic and/or stochastic processes) underlying community assembly are a central challenge in microbial ecology. However, the relative importance of these processes in shaping riverine microeukaryotic biogeography is still poorly understood. Here, we compared the spatiotemporal and biogeographical patterns of microeukaryotic community using high-throughput sequencing of 18S rRNA gene and multivariate statistical analyses from a subtropical river during wet and dry seasons. RESULTS:Our results provide the first description of biogeographical patterns of microeukaryotic communities in the Tingjiang River, the largest river in the west of Fujian province, southeastern China. The results showed that microeukaryotes from both wet and dry seasons exhibited contrasting community compositions, which might be owing to planktonic microeukaryotes having seasonal succession patterns. Further, all components of the microeukaryotic communities (including total, dominant, always rare, and conditionally rare taxa) exhibited a significant distance-decay pattern in both seasons, and these communities had a stronger distance-decay relationship during the dry season, especially for the conditionally rare taxa. Although several variables had a significant influence on the microeukaryotic communities, the environmental and spatial factors showed minor roles in shaping the communities. Importantly, these microeukaryotic communities were strongly driven by stochastic processes, with 89.9%, 88.5%, and 89.6% of the community variation explained by neutral community model during wet, dry, and both seasons, respectively. The neutral community model also explained a large fraction of the community variation across different taxonomic groups and levels. Additionally, the microeukaryotic taxa, which were above and below the neutral prediction, were ecologically and taxonomically distinct groups, which might be interactively structured by deterministic and stochastic processes. CONCLUSIONS:This study demonstrated that stochastic processes are sufficient in shaping substantial variation in river microeukaryotic metacommunity across different hydrographic regimes, thereby providing a better understanding of spatiotemporal patterns, processes, and mechanisms of microeukaryotic community in waters.
Project description:In the tropics, there are too few studies on isolation of <i>Blastocystis</i> sp. subtypes from water sources; in addition, there is also an absence of reported studies on the occurrence of <i>Blastocystis</i> sp. subtypes in water during different seasons. Therefore, this study was aimed to determine the occurrence of <i>Blastocystis</i> sp. subtypes in river water and other water sources that drained aboriginal vicinity of highly endemic intestinal parasitic infections during wet and dry seasons. Water samples were collected from six sampling points of Sungai Krau (K1-K6) and a point at Sungai Lompat (K7) and other water sources around the aboriginal villages. The water samples were collected during both seasons, wet and dry seasons. Filtration of the water samples were carried out using a flatbed membrane filtration system. The extracted DNA from concentrated water sediment was subjected to single round polymerase chain reaction and positive PCR products were subjected to sequencing. All samples were also subjected to filtration and cultured on membrane lactose glucuronide agar for the detection of faecal coliforms. During wet season, <i>Blastocystis</i> sp. ST1, ST2 and ST3 were detected in river water samples. <i>Blastocystis</i> sp. ST3 occurrence was sustained in the river water samples during dry season. However <i>Blastocystis</i> sp. ST1 and ST2 were absent during dry season. Water samples collected from various water sources showed contaminations of <i>Blastocystis</i> sp. ST1, ST2, ST3 and ST4, during wet season and <i>Blastocystis</i> sp. ST1, ST3, ST8 and ST10 during dry season. Water collected from all river sampling points during both seasons showed growth of <i>Escherichia coli and Enterobacter aerogenes</i>, indicating faecal contamination. In this study, <i>Blastocystis</i> sp. ST3 is suggested as the most robust and resistant subtype able to survive in any adverse environmental condition. Restriction and control of human and animal faecal contaminations to the river and other water sources shall prevent the transmission of <i>Blastocystis</i> sp. to humans and animals in this aboriginal community.
Project description:Water level fluctuations (WLFs) are an inherent feature of lake ecosystems and have been regarded as a pervasive pressure on lacustrine ecosystems globally due to anthropogenic activities and climate change. However, the impacts of WLFs on lake microbial communities is one of our knowledge gaps. Here, we used the high-throughput 16S rRNA gene sequencing approach to investigate the taxonomic and functional dynamics of bacterial communities in wet-season and dry-season of Poyang Lake (PYL) in China. The results showed that dry-season was enriched in total nitrogen (TN), nitrate (NO3 -), ammonia (NH4 +), and soluble reactive phosphorus (SRP), while wet-season was enriched in dissolved organic carbon (DOC) and total phosphorus (TP). Bacterial communities were distinct taxonomically and functionally in dry-season and wet-season and the nutrients especially P variation had a significant contribution to the seasonal variation of bacterial communities. Moreover, bacterial communities responded differently to nutrient dynamics in different seasons. DOC, NO3 -, and SRP had strong influences on bacterial communities in dry-season while only TP in wet-season. Alpha-diversity, functional redundancy, taxonomic dissimilarities, and taxa niche width were higher in dry-season, while functional dissimilarities were higher in wet-season, suggesting that the bacterial communities were more taxonomically sensitive in dry-season while more functionally sensitive in wet-season. Bacterial communities were more efficient in nutrients utilization in wet-season and might have different nitrogen removal mechanisms in different seasons. Bacterial communities in wet-season had significantly higher relative abundance of denitrification genes but lower anammox genes than in dry-season. This study enriched our knowledge of the impacts of WLFs and seasonal dynamics of lake ecosystems. Given the increasingly pervasive pressure of WLFs on lake ecosystems worldwide, our findings have important implications for conservation and management of lake ecosystems.
Project description:Rainfall can affect influent flow rate and compositions of wastewater, and thus further affect wastewater treatment performance and the effluent quality. This study aims to study the influence of rainfall on the environmental impacts of centralized wastewater treatment plants. The correlations between rainfall, and influent flow rate and compositions of wastewater in wet and dry seasons with two sewer systems, i.e. combined and separate sewer systems, were primarily established. Environmental impacts were assessed with life cycle assessment (LCA) to understand the temporal environmental burdens in wet and dry seasons. Functional units as per m3 treated wastewater (FU1) and as per kg PO43-eq. removed (FU2), respectively, were used to evaluate impacts of wastewater treatment to the environment. Strong correlation between rainfall and the influent flow rate was found in the wastewater treatment plants with either a combined sewer system (with Pearson correlation coefficient r at 0.66) or a separate sewer system (with r at 0.84), where r represents the strength of the association between two variables. The rainfall effect is more obvious on the eutrophication potential and global warming potential than on other environmental indicators while sewer system, i.e. combined or separate, seems not important in the two cases studied. Both wastewater treatment plants (WWTPs) show a lower environmental burden in the wet season than in the dry season partially due to the dilution of wastewater by using FU1. The WWTP receiving high strength wastewater, however, demonstrates higher environmental impacts in the wet season by using FU2 than FU1, due to the less efficient treatment caused by heavy rainfall. Meanwhile, it is found that environmental impacts from the WWTP receiving low strength wastewater have no difference when using either FU1 or FU2. The results indicate that the environmental burdens particularly eutrophication and global warming caused by WWTPs are dependent on the correlations of rainfall intensity with wastewater quantity and quality instead of combined or separate sewer system. This could be used to guide a stricter control of eutrophication in a more sensitive season in more vulnerable receiving waters.
Project description:Plastic responses to multiple environmental stressors in wet or dry seasonal populations of tropical Drosophila species have received less attention. We tested plastic effects of heat hardening, acclimation to drought or starvation, and changes in trehalose, proline and body lipids in Drosophila ananassae flies reared under wet or dry season-specific conditions. Wet season flies revealed significant increase in heat knockdown, starvation resistance and body lipids after heat hardening. However, accumulation of proline was observed only after desiccation acclimation of dry season flies while wet season flies elicited no proline but trehalose only. Therefore, drought-induced proline can be a marker metabolite for dry-season flies. Further, partial utilization of proline and trehalose under heat hardening reflects their possible thermoprotective effects. Heat hardening elicited cross-protection to starvation stress. Stressor-specific accumulation or utilization as well as rates of metabolic change for each energy metabolite were significantly higher in wet-season flies than dry-season flies. Energy metabolite changes due to inter-related stressors (heat versus desiccation or starvation) resulted in possible maintenance of energetic homeostasis in wet- or dry-season flies. Thus, low or high humidity-induced plastic changes in energy metabolites can provide cross-protection to seasonally varying climatic stressors.
Project description:Viruses are an abundant and active component of marine sediments and play a significant role in microbial ecology and biogeochemical cycling at local and global scales. To obtain a better understanding of the ecological characteristics of the viriobenthos, the abundance and morphology of viruses and the diversity and community structure of T4-type phages were systematically investigated in the surface sediments of the subtropical Pearl River Estuary (PRE). Viral abundances ranged from 4.49 × 108 to 11.7 × 108 viruses/g and prokaryotic abundances ranged from 2.63 × 108 to 9.55 × 108 cells/g, and both decreased from freshwater to saltwater. Diverse viral morphotypes, including tailed, spherical, filamentous, and rod-shaped viruses, were observed using transmission electron microscopy. Analysis of the major capsid gene (g23) indicated that the sediment T4-type phages were highly diverse and, similar to the trend in viral abundances, their diversity decreased as the salinity increased. Phylogenetic analysis suggested that most of the g23 operational taxonomic units were affiliated with marine, paddy soil, and lake groups. The T4-type phage communities in freshwater and saltwater sediments showed obvious differences, which were related to changes in the Pearl River discharge. The results of this study demonstrated both allochthonous and autochthonous sources of the viral community in the PRE sediments and the movement of certain T4-type viral groups between the freshwater and saline water biomes.
Project description:Bacterial production (BP), respiration (BR) and growth efficiency (BGE) were simultaneously determined along an environmental gradient in the Pearl River Estuary (PRE) in the wet season (May 2015) and the dry season (January 2016), in order to examine bacterial responses to the riverine dissolved organic carbon (DOC) in the PRE. The Pearl River discharge delivered labile dissolved organic matters (DOM) with low DOC:DON ratio, resulting in a clear gradient in DOC concentrations and DOC:DON ratios. BP (3.93-144 ?g C L-1 d-1) was more variable than BR (64.6-567 ?g C L-1 d-1) in terms of the percentage, along an environmental gradient in the PRE. In response to riverine DOC input, BP and the cell-specific BP increased; in contrast, the cell-specific bacterial respiration declined, likely because labile riverine DOC mitigated energetic cost for cell maintenance. Consequently, an increase in bacterial respiration was less than expected. Our findings implied that the input of highly bioavailable riverine DOC altered the carbon portioning between anabolic and catabolic pathways, consequently decreasing the fraction of DOC that bacterioplankton utilized for bacterial respiration. This might be one of the underlying mechanisms for the low CO2 degassing in the PRE receiving large amounts of sewage DOC.
Project description:Pearl millet is an important crop for arid and semi-arid regions of the world. Genomic regions associated with combining ability for yield-related traits under irrigated and drought conditions are useful in heterosis breeding programs. Chromosome segment substitution lines (CSSLs) are excellent genetic resources for precise QTL mapping and identifying naturally occurring favorable alleles. In the present study, testcross hybrid populations of 85 CSSLs were evaluated for 15 grain and stover yield-related traits for summer and wet seasons under irrigated control (CN) and moisture stress (MS) conditions. General combining ability (GCA) and specific combining ability (SCA) effects of all these traits were estimated and significant marker loci linked to GCA and SCA of the traits were identified. Heritability of the traits ranged from 53-94% in CN and 63-94% in MS. A total of 40 significant GCA loci and 36 significant SCA loci were identified for 14 different traits. Five QTLs (flowering time, panicle number and panicle yield linked to Xpsmp716 on LG4, flowering time and grain number per panicle with Xpsmp2076 on LG4) simultaneously controlled both GCA and SCA, demonstrating their unique genetic basis and usefulness for hybrid breeding programs. This study for the first time demonstrated the potential of a set of CSSLs for trait mapping in pearl millet. The novel combining ability loci linked with GCA and SCA values of the traits identified in this study may be useful in pearl millet hybrid and population improvement programs using marker-assisted selection (MAS).