There is a concern of whether the structure and diversity of a microbial community can be effectively revealed by short-length pyrosequencing reads. In this study, we performed a microbial community analysis on a sample from a high-efficiency denitrifying quinoline-degrading bioreactor and compared the results generated by pyrosequencing with those generated by clone library technology. By both technologies, 16S rRNA gene analysis indicated that the bacteria in the sample were closely related to, for example, Proteobacteria, Actinobacteria, and Bacteroidetes. The sequences belonging to Rhodococcus were the most predominant, and Pseudomonas, Sphingomonas, Acidovorax, and Zoogloea were also abundant. Both methods revealed a similar overall bacterial community structure. However, the 622 pyrosequencing reads of the hypervariable V3 region of the 16S rRNA gene revealed much higher bacterial diversity than the 130 sequences from the full-length 16S rRNA gene clone library. The 92 operational taxonomic unit (OTUs) detected using pyrosequencing belonged to 45 families, whereas the 37 OTUs found in the clone library belonged to 25 families. Most sequences obtained from the clone library had equivalents in the pyrosequencing reads. However, 64 OTUs detected by pyrosequencing were not represented in the clone library. Our results demonstrate that pyrosequencing of the V3 region of the 16S rRNA gene is not only a powerful tool for discovering low-abundance bacterial populations but is also reliable for dissecting the bacterial community structure in a wastewater environment.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Applied Microbiology and Biotechnology
- 16S rRNA gene
- Clone library
- Microbial community
- Quinoline degradation