Effects of bioaugmentation in para-nitrophenol-contaminated soil on the abundance and community structure of ammonia-oxidizing bacteria and archaea

Xiang-Qun Chi, Kun Liu, Ning-Yi Zhou
Applied Microbiology and Biotechnology 2015, 99 (14): 6069-82
Pseudomonas sp. strain WBC-3 mineralizes the priority pollutant para-nitrophenol (PNP) and releases nitrite (NO2 (-)), which is probably involved in the nitrification. In this study, the rate of PNP removal in soil bioaugmented with strain WBC-3 was more accelerated with more NO2 (-) accumulation than in uninoculated soils. Strain WBC-3 survived well and remained stable throughout the entire period. Real-time polymerase chain reaction (real-time PCR) indicated a higher abundance of ammonia-oxidizing bacteria (AOB) than ammonia-oxidizing archaea (AOA), suggesting that AOB played a greater role in nitrification in the original sampled soil. Real-time PCR and multivariate analysis based on the denaturing gradient gel electrophoresis showed that PNP contamination did not significantly alter the abundance and community structure of ammonia oxidizers except for inhibiting the AOB abundance. Bioaugmentation of PNP-contaminated soil showed a significant effect on AOB populations and community structure as well as AOA populations. In addition, ammonium (NH4 (+)) variation was found to be the primary factor affecting the AOB community structure, as determined by the correlation between the community structures of ammonia oxidizers and environmental factors. It is here proposed that the balance between archaeal and bacterial ammonia oxidation could be influenced significantly by the variation in NH4 (+) levels as caused by bioaugmentation of contaminated soil by a pollutant containing nitrogen.

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