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Proceedings Paper

Anaerobic halo-alkaliphilic bacterial community of athalassic hypersaline from Mono Lake and Owens Lake in California
Author(s): Elena V. Pikuta; Ekaterina N. Detkova; Asim K. Bej; Damien Marsic; Richard B. Hoover
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Paper Abstract

The bacterial diversity of microbial extremophiles from the meromictic, hypersaline Mono Lake and a small evaporite pool in Owens Lake of California was studied. In spite of these regions had differing mineral background and different concentrations of NaCl in water they contain the same halo- alkaliphiles anaerobic bacterial community. Three new species of bacteria were detected in this community: primary anaerobe, dissipotrophic saccharolytic spirochete Spirochaeta americana strain AspG1T, primary anaerobe which is proteolytic Tindallia californiensis strain APOT, and secondary anaerobe, hydrogen using Desulfonatronum thiodismutans strain MLF1T, which is sulfate- reducer with chemo-litho-autotrophic metabolism. All of these bacteria are obligate alkaliphiles and dependent upon Na+ ions and CO32- ions in growth mediums. It is interesting that closest relationships for two of these species were isolates from samples of equatorial African soda Magadi lake: Spirochaeta americana AspG1T has 99.4% similarity on 16S rDNA- analyses with Spirochaeta alkalica Z- 7491T, and Tindallia californiensis APOT has 99.1% similarity with Tindallia magadiensis Z-7934T. But result of DNA-DNA- hybridization demonstrated less then 50% similarity between Spirochaeta americana AspG1T and Spirochaeta alkalica Z-7491T. Percent of homology between Tindallia californiensis APOT and Tindallia magadiensis Z-7934T is only 55%. The sulfate-reducer from the alkalic anaerobic community of Magadi lake Desulfonatronovibrio hydrogenovorans Z-7935T was phylogenetically distant from this sulfate-reducer in Mono lake, but genetically closer (99.7% similarity) to the sulfate-reducer, isolated from Central Asian alkalic lake Khadyn in Siberia Desulfonatronum lacustre Z-7951T. The study of key enzymes (hydrogenase and CO- hydrogenase) in Tindallia californiensis APOT and Desulfonatronum thiodismutans MLF1T showed the presence of high activity of both the enzymes in first and only hydrogenase in second isolate. These results indicate that the athalassic, soda Mono and Owens lakes contain an anaerobic alkaliphilic bacterial community with common ancestors of geographically distant regions, but very same in morphological and functional aspects. As suggested Zavarzin, halo- alkaliphiles may represent relics of microbial life from the early formation of the ancient Earth before the Neoproterozoic period.

Paper Details

Date Published: 26 February 2003
PDF: 15 pages
Proc. SPIE 4859, Instruments, Methods, and Missions for Astrobiology V, (26 February 2003); doi: 10.1117/12.463322
Show Author Affiliations
Elena V. Pikuta, Univ. of Alabama in Huntsville and NASA Marshall Space Flight Ctr. (United States)
Ekaterina N. Detkova, Institute of Microbiology (Russia)
Asim K. Bej, Univ. of Alabama at Birmingham (United States)
Damien Marsic, Univ. of Alabama in Huntsville (United States)
Richard B. Hoover, NASA Marshall Space Flight Ctr. (United States)

Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 4859:
Instruments, Methods, and Missions for Astrobiology V
Richard B. Hoover; Alexei Yu. Rozanov; Roland R. Paepe, Editor(s)

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