Enhanced biodegradation of petroleum hydrocarbons in the mycorrhizosphere of sub-boreal forest soils

Robertson, Susan J. and Kennedy, Nabla M. and Massicotte, Hugues B. and Rutherford, P. Michael (2010) Enhanced biodegradation of petroleum hydrocarbons in the mycorrhizosphere of sub-boreal forest soils. Environmental Microbiology Reports, 2 (4). pp. 587-593. ISSN 17582229

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Official URL: http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/j.1758-2229.2010.00153.x

Abstract

Petroleum hydrocarbon (PHC) contamination is becoming more common in boreal forest soils. However, linkages between PHC biodegradation and microbial community dynamics in the mycorrhizosphere of boreal forest soils are poorly understood. Seedlings (lodgepole pine, paper birch, lingonberry) were established in reconstructed soil systems, consisting of an organic layer (mor humus, coarse woody debris, or previously oil-contaminated mor humus) overlying mineral (Ae, Bf) horizons. Light crude oil was applied to the soil surface after 4 months; systems were destructively sampled at 1 and 16 weeks following treatment. Soil concentrations of four PHC fractions were determined using acetone– hexane extraction followed by gas chromatography – flame ionization detection analysis. Genotypic profiles of root-associated bacterial communities were generated using length heterogeneity-PCR of 16S rDNA. Most plant–soil treatments showed significant loss in the smaller fraction PHCs indicating an inherent capacity for biodegradation. Concentrations of total PHCs declined significantly only in planted (pine-woody debris and birch-humus) systems (averaging 59% and 82% loss between 1 and 16 weeks respectively), reinforcing the importance of the mycorrhizosphere for enhancing microbial catabolism. Bacterial community structure was correlated more with mycorrhizosphere type and complexity than with PHC contamination. However, results suggest that communities in PHC-contaminated and pristine soils may become distinct over time.

Item Type: Article
Departments or Groups: *NONE OF THESE*
Divisions: School of Science > Department of Chemical and Life Sciences
Depositing User: Nabla Kennedy
Date Deposited: 24 Jun 2015 09:39
Last Modified: 22 Aug 2016 10:27
URI: http://repository.wit.ie/id/eprint/2889

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