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Microbial diversity in a pyrite-rich tailings impoundment (Carnoulès, France)

Abstract : The microbial communities have been investigated in the subsurface waters of the Carnoulès pyrite-rich tailings impoundment (France) for two hydrological situations characterized by the presence of oxygenated waters during winter and suboxic conditions in early autumn. In these acidic waters (2-5) characterized by elevated concentrations of Fe (1608-3354 mg·1-1), As (130-434 mg·1-1) and sulfates (5796-14318 mg·1-1) and variable dissolved oxygen content, the cultivable bacteria found in these system are Thiomonas and Acidithiobacillus ferrooxidans. Molecular methods, Terminal-Restriction Fragment Length Polymorphism (T-RFLP), and 16S rRNA encoding gene library analysis indicate low diversity. The environment is dominated by only a few types of microorganisms, with 70-80% of the whole bacterial population assigned to two or three Terminal-Restriction Fragments (T-RFs). Most of these organisms are uncultured, newly described, or recently associated with acid mine drainage. Modifications of the community structure are observed as a function of the sampling period and seem to be related to the aqueous chemistry of the tailings water. At low Dissolved Oxygen (DO = 1 mg·1-1) concentrations and moderately acidic conditions (pH = 5.7), the dominant organisms are related to the uncultured clone BA31 affiliated with Desulfosarcina variabilis, a sulfate-reducing bacteria (SRB), Acidithiobacillus ferrooxidans and the uncultured clone BVB20, closely related to Thiobacillus. At high (12 mg·1-1) DO concentrations and low (<2) pH values, the microbial diversity is less important and 65% of the population is assigned to the uncultured bacterium clone AS6 related to Desulfosarcina variabilis.
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Submitted on : Wednesday, January 19, 2022 - 10:16:42 AM
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O. Bruneel, Robert Duran, K. Koffi, C. Casiot, A. Fourçans, et al.. Microbial diversity in a pyrite-rich tailings impoundment (Carnoulès, France). Geomicrobiology Journal, Taylor & Francis, 2005, 22 (5), pp.249-257. ⟨10.1080/01490450590947805⟩. ⟨hal-01841790⟩



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