The distribution and abundance of sulfate-reducing bacteria (SRB) and eukaryotes within the upper 4 mm of a hypersaline cyanobacterial mat community were characterized at high resolution with group-specific hybridization probes to quantify 16S rRNA extracted from 100-μm depth intervals. This revealed a preferential localization of SRB within the region defined by the oxygen chemocline. Among the different groups of SRB quantified, including members of the provisional families 'Desulfovibrionaceae' and 'Desulfobacteriaceae,' Desulfonema-like populations dominated and accounted for up to 30% of total rRNA extracted from certain depth intervals of the chemocline. These data suggest that recognized genera of SRB are not necessarily restricted by high levels of oxygen in this mat community and the possibility of significant sulfur cycling within the chemocline. In marked contrast, eukaryotic populations in this community demonstrated a preference for regions of anoxia.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Applied Microbiology and Biotechnology
- Food Science