, Volume 17, Issue 3, pp 523–534 | Cite as

Archaeal and bacterial diversity in two hot spring microbial mats from a geothermal region in Romania

  • Cristian ComanEmail author
  • Bogdan Drugă
  • Adriana Hegedus
  • Cosmin Sicora
  • Nicolae Dragoş
Original Paper


The diversity of archaea and bacteria was investigated in two slightly alkaline, mesophilic hot springs from the Western Plain of Romania. Phylogenetic analysis showed a low diversity of Archaea, only three Euryarchaeota taxa being detected: Methanomethylovorans thermophila, Methanomassiliicoccus luminyensis and Methanococcus aeolicus. Twelve major bacterial groups were identified, both springs being dominated by Cyanobacteria, Chloroflexi and Proteobacteria. While at the phylum/class-level the microbial mats share a similar biodiversity; at the species level the geothermal springs investigated seem to be colonized by specific consortia. The dominant taxa were filamentous heterocyst-containing Fischerella, at 45 °C and non-heterocyst Leptolyngbya and Geitlerinema, at 55 °C. Other bacterial taxa (Thauera sp., Methyloversatilis universalis, Pannonibacter phragmitetus, Polymorphum gilvum, Metallibacterium sp. and Spartobacteria) were observed for the first time in association with a geothermal habitat. Based on their bacterial diversity the two mats were clustered together with other similar habitats from Europe and part of Asia, most likely the water temperature playing a major role in the formation of specific microbial communities that colonize the investigated thermal springs.


Biodiversity Microbial mat Archaeal diversity Bacterial diversity Hot springs Community structure 



This work was partially supported by a Grant funded by the Romanian National Authority for Scientific Research, CNCS-UEFISCDI, project number PN-II-RU-PD-2011-3-0215 and partially by the POSCCE programme, project number 236/16.08.2010.

Supplementary material

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Supplementary material 1 (JPEG 473 kb)
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Copyright information

© Springer Japan 2013

Authors and Affiliations

  • Cristian Coman
    • 1
    Email author
  • Bogdan Drugă
    • 1
  • Adriana Hegedus
    • 1
  • Cosmin Sicora
    • 1
    • 3
  • Nicolae Dragoş
    • 1
    • 2
  1. 1.NIRDBS Romania, Institute of Biological ResearchCluj-NapocaRomania
  2. 2.Department of BiologyBabeş-Bolyai UniversityCluj-NapocaRomania
  3. 3.Biological Research CenterJibouRomania

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