Image_2_Sediment Microbial Communities and Their Potential Role as Environmental Pollution Indicators in Xuande Atoll, South China Sea.TIF (488.76 kB)
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posted on 25.05.2020, 04:07 by Biao Zhang, Yan Li, Shi-Zheng Xiang, Yu Yan, Rui Yang, Meng-Ping Lin, Xue-Mu Wang, Yu-Long Xue, Xiang-Yu Guan

In this study, 39 sediment samples were collected from Qilian Island, Iltis Bank, and Yongxing Island in Xuande Atoll in the South China Sea (SCS), and the microbial community structures and distribution were analyzed. The microbial community was influenced by both natural environmental factors and human activities. The abundance of genera Vibrio and Pseudoalteromonas, which are associated with pathogenicity and pollutant degradation, were significantly higher in Qilian Island than in Yongxing Island and Iltis Bank, suggesting possible contamination of Qilian Island area through human activities. Pathogenic or typical pollutants-degrading bacteria were found to be negatively correlated with most of the commonly occurring bacterial populations in marine sediment, and these bacteria were more likely to appear in the sediment of deep water layer. This co-occurrence pattern may be due to bacterial adaptation to environmental changes such as depth and contaminations from human activities, including garbage disposal, farming, and oil spills from ships. The findings of this study could help in understanding the potential influences of human activities on the ecosystem at the microbial level.

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