High ratio of bacteriochlorophyll biosynthesis genes to chlorophyll biosynthesis genes in bacteria of humic lakes
MetadataShow full item record
Recent studies highlight the diversity and significance of marine phototrophic microorganisms such as picocyanobacteria, phototrophic picoeukaryotes, and bacteriochlorophyll- and rhodopsin-holding phototrophic bacteria. To assess if freshwater ecosystems also harbor similar phototroph diversity, genes involved in the biosynthesis of bacteriochlorophyll and chlorophyll were targeted to explore oxygenic and aerobic anoxygenic phototroph composition in a wide range of lakes. Partial dark-operative protochlorophyllide oxidoreductase (DPOR) and chlorophyllide oxidoreductase (COR) genes in bacteria of seven lakes with contrasting trophic statuses were PCR amplified, cloned, and sequenced. Out of 61 sequences encoding the L subunit of DPOR (L-DPOR), 22 clustered with aerobic anoxygenic photosynthetic bacteria, whereas 39 L-DPOR sequences related to oxygenic phototrophs, like cyanobacteria, were observed. Phylogenetic analysis revealed clear separation of these freshwater L-DPOR genes as well as 11 COR gene sequences from their marine counterparts. Terminal restriction fragment length analysis of L-DPOR genes was used to characterize oxygenic aerobic and anoxygenic photosynthesizing populations in 20 lakes differing in physical and chemical characteristics. Significant differences in L-DPOR community composition were observed between dystrophic lakes and all other systems, where a higher proportion of genes affiliated with aerobic anoxygenic photosynthetic bacteria was observed than in other systems. Our results reveal a significant diversity of phototrophic microorganisms in lakes and suggest niche partitioning of oxygenic and aerobic anoxygenic phototrophs in these systems in response to trophic status and coupled differences in light regime.
Applied and Environmental Microbiology