Comparison of bacteria from deep subsurface sediment and adjacent groundwater
- 335 Downloads
Samples of groundwater and the enclosing sediments were compared for densities of bacteria using direct (acridine orange direct staining) and viable (growth on 1% PTYG medium) count methodology. Sediments to a depth of 550 m were collected from boreholes at three sites on the Savannah River Site near Aiken, South Carolina, using techniques to insure a minimum of surface contamination. Clusters of wells screened at discreet intervals were established at each site. Bacterial densities in sediment were higher, by both direct and viable count, than in groundwater samples. Differences between direct and viable counts were much greater for groundwater samples than for sediment samples. Densities of bacteria in sediment ranged from less than 1.00×106 bacteria/g dry weight (gdw) up to 5.01 ×108 bacteria/gdw for direct counts, while viable counts were less than 1.00×103 CFU/gdw to 4.07×107 CFU/gdw. Bacteria densities in groundwater were 1.00×103–6.31×104 bacteria/ml and 5.75–4.57×102 CFU/ml for direct and viable counts, respectively. Isolates from sediment were also found to assimilate a wider variety of carbon compounds than groundwater bacteria. The data suggest that oligotrophic aquifer sediments have unique and dense bacterial communities that are attached and not reflected in groundwater found in the strata. Effective in situ bioremediation of contaimination in these aquifers may require sampling and characterization of sediment communities.
KeywordsViable Count Subsurface Sediment Savannah River Site Microb Ecol Terrestrial Subsurface
Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.
- 1.Balkwill DL (1989) Numbers, diversity, and morphological characteristics of aerobic, chemoheterotrophic bacteria in deep subsurface sediments from a site in South Carolina. Geomicrobiol J 7:33–52Google Scholar
- 4.Bartha R, Bossert I (1984) The treatment and disposal of petroleum wastes. In: Atlas R (ed) Petroleum microbiology. Macmillan, New York, pp 553–577Google Scholar
- 7.Craun GF (1986) Waterborne diseases in the United States. CRC Press, Boca Raton, FLGoogle Scholar
- 8.Fliermans CB (1989) Microbial life in the terrestrial subsurface of southeastern coastal plain sediments. Haz Was Haz Mat 6:155–171Google Scholar
- 11.Fredrickson JK, Garland TR, Hicks RJ, Thomas JM, Li SW, McFadden KM (1989) Lithotrophic and heterotrophic bacteria in deep subsurface sediments and their relation to sediment properties. Geomicrobiol J 7:53–66Google Scholar
- 16.Hicks RJ, Fredrickson JM (1989) Aerobic metabolic metabolic potential of microbial populations indigenous to deep subsurface environments. Geomicrobiol J 7: 67–77Google Scholar
- 23.Patrick R, Ford E, Luarles J (1983) Groundwater contamination in the United States, 2nd ed. University of Pennsylvania Press, Philadelphia, PAGoogle Scholar
- 25.Poindexter J (1981) Oligotrophy: Fast and famine existence. Adv Microb Ecol 5: 63–90Google Scholar
- 27.Sargent KA, Fliermans CB (1989) Geology and hydrology of the deep subsurface microbiology sampling sites at the Savannah River Plant, South Carolina. Geomicrobiol J 7: 3–14Google Scholar
- 31.Zar JH (1984) Biostatistical analysis, 2nd ed. Prentice-Hall, Englewood Cliffs, NJGoogle Scholar