Archaeal and bacterial communities in geochemically diverse hot springs of Yellowstone National Park, USA

D. R. Meyer-Dombard, Everett Shock, J. P. Amend

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

142 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Microbiological and geochemical surveys were conducted at three hot springs (Obsidian Pool, Sylvan Spring, and 'Bison Pool') in Yellowstone National Park (Wyoming, USA). Microbial community structure was investigated by polymerase chain reaction (PCR) amplification of 16S rRNA gene sequences from DNA extracted from sediments of each hot spring, followed by molecular cloning. Both bacterial and archaeal DNA was retrieved from all samples. No Euryarchaea were found, but diverse Crenarchaea exist in all three pools, particularly affiliating with deep-branching, but uncultivated organisms. In addition, cloned DNA affiliating with the Desulphurococcales and Thermoproteales was identified, but the distribution of taxa differs in each hot spring. The bacterial community at all three locations is dominated by members of the Aquificales and Thermodesulfobacteriales, indicating that the 'knallgas' reaction (aerobic hydrogen oxidation) may be a central metabolism in these ecosystems. To provide geochemical context for the microbial community structures, energy-yields for a number of chemolithoautotrophic reactions are provided for >80 sampling sites in Yellowstone, including Obsidian Pool, Sylvan Spring, and 'Bison Pool'. This energy profile shows that the knallgas reaction is just one of many exergonic reactions in the Yellowstone hot springs, that energy-yields for certain reactions can vary substantially from one site to the next, and that few of the demonstrated exergonic reactions are known to support microbial metabolism.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)211-227
Number of pages17
JournalGeobiology
Volume3
Issue number3
DOIs
StatePublished - Jul 2005

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hot springs
thermal spring
bacterial communities
national parks
national park
obsidian
bison
DNA
microbial communities
microbial community
Aquificales
energy
community structure
metabolism
geochemical survey
polymerase chain reaction
hydrogen
branching
molecular cloning
amplification

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Environmental Science(all)
  • Ecology, Evolution, Behavior and Systematics
  • Earth and Planetary Sciences(all)

Cite this

Archaeal and bacterial communities in geochemically diverse hot springs of Yellowstone National Park, USA. / Meyer-Dombard, D. R.; Shock, Everett; Amend, J. P.

In: Geobiology, Vol. 3, No. 3, 07.2005, p. 211-227.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

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