Metabolic and Molecular Profiling of Microbial Communities Following Controlled Kerosene Pollution
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Department of Genetics, Faculty of Biology, University of Bucharest, Bucharest, Romania
Submission date: 2018-07-03
Final revision date: 2018-08-20
Acceptance date: 2018-09-03
Online publication date: 2019-08-06
Publication date: 2019-10-23
Corresponding author
Ana-Maria Tanase   

University of Bucharest, Department of Genetics, Aleea Intrarea Portocalelor nr.1-3, 060101 Bucharest, Romania
Pol. J. Environ. Stud. 2020;29(1):197-203
The release of xenobiotic compounds as petroleum and its derivatives still represents a problematic and not fully manageable consequence of various anthropogenic activities. Thus, endogenous microbial communities facing such pollutants are constantly adapting to new conditions, their evaluation being an important asset for environmental preservation. This study analyzes structural and metabolic shifts in a soil microbial community following kerosene pollution. Metabolic profiles from Biolog EcoPlate, analyzed as a guild grouping, Shannon diversity index (H index) and functional divergence revealed a significant reorganization followed by specialization in communities’ metabolic function, also being supported by molecular profiles from ribosomal RNA (rRNA) intergenic spacer analysis (RISA) fingerprinting. Highly intense metabolic activity and structural changes are suggested by the increase in alkB and rRNA genes copy number, having similar trends. Thus, alkB gene copy number increased in 70 days from 5.53×109 to 1.67×1011 copies. In this study we managed to report the changes that occur in a soil microbial community facing kerosene pollution using a significant number of complementary techniques, resulting in a complex characterization that can be of great use when facing kerosene-type pollutants.
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