Spatio-temporal distribution of phototrophic sulfur bacteria in the chemocline of meromictic Lake Cadagno (Switzerland)

Tonolla, M.; Peduzzi, S.; Hahn, D.; Peduzzi, R.

FEMS Microbiology Ecology 43(1): 89-98


ISSN/ISBN: 0168-6496
PMID: 19719699
DOI: 10.1016/s0168-6496(02)00354-9
Accession: 011382575

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Abstract In situ hybridization was used to study the spatio-temporal distribution of phototrophic sulfur bacteria in the permanent chemocline of meromictic Lake Cadagno, Switzerland. At all four sampling times during the year the numerically most important phototrophic sulfur bacteria in the chemocline were small-celled purple sulfur bacteria of two yet uncultured populations designated D and F. Other small-celled purple sulfur bacteria (Amoebobacter purpureus and Lamprocystis roseopersicina) were found in numbers about one order of magnitude lower. These numbers were similar to those of large-celled purple sulfur bacteria (Chromatium okenii) and green sulfur bacteria that almost entirely consisted of Chlorobium phaeobacteroides. In March and June when low light intensities reached the chemocline, cell densities of all populations, with the exception of L. roseopersicina, were about one order of magnitude lower than in August and October when light intensities were much higher. Most populations were evenly distributed throughout the whole chemocline during March and June, while in August and October a microstratification of populations was detected suggesting specific eco-physiological adaptations of different populations of phototrophic sulfur bacteria to the steep physico-chemical gradients in the chemocline of Lake Cadagno.