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Revealing the uncultivated majority: combining DNA stable-isotope probing, multiple displacement amplification and metagenomic analyses of uncultivated Methylocystis in acidic peatlands

Chen, Yin; Dumont, Mark G.; Neufeld, Josh D.; Bodrossy, Levente; Stralis-Pavese, Nancy; McNamara, Niall P.; Ostle, Nick; Briones, Maria J. I.; Murrell, J. Colin. 2008 Revealing the uncultivated majority: combining DNA stable-isotope probing, multiple displacement amplification and metagenomic analyses of uncultivated Methylocystis in acidic peatlands. Environmental Microbiology, 10 (10). 2609-2622. 10.1111/j.1462-2920.2008.01683.x

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Abstract/Summary

Peatlands represent an enormous carbon reservoir and have a potential impact on the global climate because of the active methanogenesis and methanotrophy in these soils. Uncultivated methanotrophs from seven European peatlands were studied using a combination of molecular methods. Screening for methanotroph diversity using a particulate methane monooxygenase-based diagnostic gene array revealed that Methylocystis-related species were dominant in six of the seven peatlands studied. The abundance and methane oxidation activity of Methylocystis spp. were further confirmed by DNA stable-isotope probing analysis of a sample taken from the Moor House peatland (England). After ultracentrifugation, C-13-labelled DNA, containing genomic DNA of these Methylocystis spp., was separated from C-12 DNA and subjected to multiple displacement amplification (MDA) to generate sufficient DNA for the preparation of a fosmid metagenomic library. Potential bias of MDA was detected by fingerprint analysis of 16S rRNA using denaturing gradient gel electrophoresis for low-template amplification (0.01 ng template). Sufficient template (1-5 ng) was used in MDA to circumvent this bias and chimeric artefacts were minimized by using an enzymatic treatment of MDA-generated DNA with S1 nuclease and DNA polymerase I. Screening of the metagenomic library revealed one fosmid containing methanol dehydrogenase and two fosmids containing 16S rRNA genes from these Methylocystis-related species as well as one fosmid containing a 16S rRNA gene related to that of Methylocella/Methylocapsa. Sequencing of the 14 kb methanol dehydrogenase-containing fosmid allowed the assembly of a gene cluster encoding polypeptides involved in bacterial methanol utilization (mxaFJGIRSAC). This combination of DNA stable-isotope probing, MDA and metagenomics provided access to genomic information of a relatively large DNA fragment of these thus far uncultivated, predominant and active methanotrophs in peatland soil.

Item Type: Publication - Article
Digital Object Identifier (DOI): 10.1111/j.1462-2920.2008.01683.x
Programmes: CEH Programmes pre-2009 publications > Biodiversity > BD03 The Genetic Basis of Ecological Function
CEH Programmes pre-2009 publications > Biogeochemistry > BG01 Measuring and modelling trace gas, aerosol and carbon
CEH Sections: Shore
ISSN: 1462-2912
NORA Subject Terms: Agriculture and Soil Science
Biology and Microbiology
Ecology and Environment
Earth Sciences
Date made live: 05 Jan 2009 15:03
URI: http://nora.nerc.ac.uk/id/eprint/5009

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