, Volume 14, Issue 4, pp 357–366 | Cite as

Temperature and nutrient induced responses of Lake Fryxell sulfate-reducing prokaryotes and description of Desulfovibrio lacusfryxellense, sp. nov., a pervasive, cold-active, sulfate-reducing bacterium from Lake Fryxell, Antarctica

  • W. Matthew Sattley
  • Michael T. Madigan
Original Paper


The effects of temperature and carbon substrate availability on the stimulation of sulfate reduction by indigenous populations of sulfate-reducing prokaryotes (SRP) in permanently ice-covered Lake Fryxell, Antarctica were investigated. Psychrophilic and halotolerant, lactate-degrading SRP showed significant metabolic activity throughout all sampled depths of the water column, suggesting that such organisms, possibly of marine origin, may be key contributors to carbon and sulfur cycling in Lake Fryxell. Planktonic and benthic strains of lactate-oxidizing sulfate-reducing bacteria (SRB) were isolated from samples of various depths of the anoxic water column and from surficial sediments. Phylogenetic analyses of 16S rRNA gene sequences placed the Fryxell sulfate-reducer (FSR) strains within the Deltaproteobacteria and showed them to be most closely related to the Arctic marine species of SRB Desulfovibrio frigidus and Desulfovibrio ferrireducens. Based on phylogenetic and phenotypic differences between the Antarctic FSR strains and related species of the genus Desulfovibrio, strain FSRsT (=DSM 23315T =ATCC BAA-2083T) is proposed as the type strain of a novel species of cold-active SRB, Desulfovibrio lacusfryxellense, sp. nov.


Sulfate-reducing bacteria Psychrophile Antarctica Lake Fryxell Desulfovibrio 



Dissimilatory sulfite reductase alpha subunit


4-Morpholinepropanesulfonic acid


Sulfate reduction


Sulfate-reducing prokaryotes


Sulfate-reducing bacteria



This work was supported by US National Science Foundation grants OPP0085481, MCB0237576, and OPP0739435. Raytheon Polar Services, Petroleum Helicopters, Inc., and John C. Priscu and the McMurdo LTER limnology team are acknowledged for logistical support in the Antarctic. We also thank the McMurdo LTER for some of the data used in Fig. 1b. We thank Steven Schmitt (IMAGE, SIUC) for electron microscopy and John P. Buffat for assistance in designing and constructing our high-resolution, peristaltic pump-driven, limnological sampling device. We also gratefully acknowledge Deborah O. Jung for technical assistance and help in preparing the figures and Andrew Burns for help with culturing SRB.


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Copyright information

© Springer 2010

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of MicrobiologySouthern Illinois UniversityCarbondaleUSA
  2. 2.Division of Natural SciencesIndiana Wesleyan UniversityMarionUSA

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