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author:("bettered, yan")
1.  Enumerating Viruses in Coral Mucus 
Applied and Environmental Microbiology  2012;78(17):6377-6379.
The distribution of viruses inhabiting the coral mucus remains undetermined, as there is no suitable standardized procedure for their separation from this organic matrix, principally owing to its viscosity and autofluorescence. Seven protocols were tested, and the most efficient separations were obtained from a chemical treatment requiring potassium citrate.
PMCID: PMC3416620  PMID: 22729548
2.  Short-term responses of unicellular planktonic eukaryotes to increases in temperature and UVB radiation 
BMC Microbiology  2012;12:202.
Small size eukaryotes play a fundamental role in the functioning of coastal ecosystems, however, the way in which these micro-organisms respond to combined effects of water temperature, UVB radiations (UVBR) and nutrient availability is still poorly investigated.
We coupled molecular tools (18S rRNA gene sequencing and fingerprinting) with microscope-based identification and counting to experimentally investigate the short-term responses of small eukaryotes (<6 μm; from a coastal Mediterranean lagoon) to a warming treatment (+3°C) and UVB radiation increases (+20%) at two different nutrient levels. Interestingly, the increase in temperature resulted in higher pigmented eukaryotes abundances and in community structure changes clearly illustrated by molecular analyses. For most of the phylogenetic groups, some rearrangements occurred at the OTUs level even when their relative proportion (microscope counting) did not change significantly. Temperature explained almost 20% of the total variance of the small eukaryote community structure (while UVB explained only 8.4%). However, complex cumulative effects were detected. Some antagonistic or non additive effects were detected between temperature and nutrients, especially for Dinophyceae and Cryptophyceae.
This multifactorial experiment highlights the potential impacts, over short time scales, of changing environmental factors on the structure of various functional groups like small primary producers, parasites and saprotrophs which, in response, can modify energy flow in the planktonic food webs.
PMCID: PMC3478981  PMID: 22966751
Small eukaryotes; Molecular diversity; Temperature; UVB radiation; Microcosms experiment; Mediterranean lagoon
3.  Disentangling the relative influence of bacterioplankton phylogeny and metabolism on lysogeny in reservoirs and lagoons 
The ISME journal  2010;5(5):831-842.
Previous studies indicate that lysogeny is preponderant when environmental conditions are challenging for the bacterial communities and when their metabolism is reduced. Furthermore, it appears that lysogeny is more frequent within certain bacterial phylogenetic groups. In this comparative study from 10 freshwater reservoirs and 10 coastal lagoons, we aim to disentangle the influence of these different factors. In eight reservoirs and four lagoons, lysogeny was detected by induction assays with mitomycin C, and induction significantly modified the bacterial community composition (BCC), whereas community composition remained constant in ecosystems in which lysogeny was not observed. Among the phylogenetic groups studied, the most abundant ones were Bacteroidetes and α-proteobacteria in lagoons, and β-proteobacteria and Bacteroidetes in reservoirs. These dominant groups comprised the highest proportions of inducible lysogens. In order to unravel the effects of bacterial metabolism from phylogeny on lysogeny, we measured bacterial community physiology and the specific activities of selected phylogenetic groups. The proportion of inducible lysogens within the α- and the β-proteobacteria decreased with increasing group-specific metabolism in lagoons and reservoirs, respectively. In contrast, this relationship was not observed for the other lysogen-containing groups. Hence, both host physiology and phylogeny are critical for the establishment of lysogeny. This study illustrates the importance of lysogeny among the most abundant phylogenetic groups, and further suggests its strong structuring impact on BCC.
PMCID: PMC3105773  PMID: 21124489
aquatic ecosystems; bacterial community composition; bacterial physiology; lysogeny; MAR-FISH; temperate phages
5.  Virus-Bacterium Interactions in Water and Sediment of West African Inland Aquatic Systems 
The ecology of virioplankton in tropical aquatic ecosystems is poorly documented, and in particular, there are no references concerning African continental waters in the literature. In this study, we examined virus-bacterium interactions in the pelagic and benthic zones of seven contrasting shallow inland waters in Senegal, including one hypersaline lake. SYBR Gold-stained samples revealed that in the surface layers of the sites, the numbers of viruses were in the same range as the numbers of viruses reported previously for productive temperate systems. Despite high bacterial production rates, the percentages of visibly infected cells (as determined by transmission electron microscopy) were similar to the lowest percentages (range, 0.3 to 1.1%; mean, 0.5%) found previously at pelagic freshwater or marine sites, presumably because of the local environmental and climatic conditions. Since the percentages of lysogenic bacteria were consistently less than 8% for pelagic and benthic samples, lysogeny did not appear to be a dominant strategy for virus propagation at these sites. In the benthic samples, viruses were highly concentrated, but paradoxically, no bacteria were visibly infected. This suggests that sediment provides good conditions for virus preservation but ironically is an unfavorable environment for proliferation. In addition, given the comparable size distributions of viruses in the water and sediment samples, our results support the paradigm that aquatic viruses are ubiquitous and may have moved between the two compartments of the shallow systems examined. Overall, this study provides additional information about the relevance of viruses in tropical areas and indicates that the intensity of virus-bacterium interactions in benthic habitats may lower than the intensity in the adjacent bodies of water.
PMCID: PMC1538746  PMID: 16885276
6.  Infection Paradox: High Abundance but Low Impact of Freshwater Benthic Viruses 
The discovery of an abundant and diverse virus community in oceans and lakes has profoundly reshaped ideas about global carbon and nutrient fluxes, food web dynamics, and maintenance of microbial biodiversity. These roles are exerted through massive viral impact on the population dynamics of heterotrophic bacterioplankton and primary producers. We took advantage of a shallow wetland system with contrasting microhabitats in close proximity to demonstrate that in marked contrast to pelagic systems, viral infection, determined directly by transmission electron microscopy, and consequently mortality of prokaryotes were surprisingly low in benthic habitats in all seasons. This was true even though free viruses were abundant throughout the year and bacterial infection and mortality rates were high in surrounding water. The habitats in which we found this pattern include sediment, decomposing plant litter, and biofilms on aquatic vegetation. Overall, we detected viruses in only 4 of a total of ∼15,000 bacterial cells inspected in these three habitats; for comparison, nearly 300 of ∼5,000 cells suspended in the water column were infected. The strikingly low incidence of impact of phages in the benthos may have important implications, since a major portion of microbial biodiversity and global carbon and nutrient turnover are associated with surfaces. Therefore, if failure to infect benthic bacteria is a widespread phenomenon, then the global role of viruses in controlling microbial diversity, food web dynamics, and biogeochemical cycles would be greatly diminished compared to predictions based on data from planktonic environments.
PMCID: PMC1489317  PMID: 16820485
7.  Viral Activity in Two Contrasting Lake Ecosystems 
For aquatic systems, especially freshwaters, there is little data on the long-term (i.e., >6-month period) and depth-related variability of viruses. In this study, we examined virus-induced mortality of heterotrophic bacteria over a 10-month period and throughout the water column in two lakes of the French Massif Central, the oligomesotrophic Lake Pavin and the eutrophic Lake Aydat. Concurrently, we estimated nonviral mortality through heterotrophic nanoflagellate and ciliate bacterivory. Overall, viral infection parameters were much less variable than bacterial production. We found that the frequency of visibly infected cells (FVIC), estimated using transmission electron microscopy, peaked in both lakes at the end of spring (May to June) and in early autumn (September to October). FVIC values were significantly higher in Lake Pavin (mean [M] = 1.6%) than in Lake Aydat (M = 1.1%), whereas the opposite trend was observed for burst sizes, which averaged 25.7 and 30.2 virus particles bacterium−1, respectively. We detected no significant depth-related differences in FVIC or burst size. We found that in both lakes the removal of bacterial production by flagellate grazing (MPavin = 37.7%, MAydat = 18.5%) was nearly always more than the production removed by viral lysis (MPavin = 16.2%, MAydat = 19%) or ciliate grazing (MPavin = 2.7%, MAydat = 8.8%). However, at specific times and locations, viral lysis prevailed over protistan grazing, for example, in the anoxic hypolimnion of Lake Aydat. In addition, viral mortality represented a relatively constant mortality source in a bacterial community showing large variations in growth rate and subject to large variations in loss rates from grazers. Finally, although viruses did not represent the main agent of bacterial mortality, our data seem to show that their relative importance was higher in the less productive system.
PMCID: PMC404444  PMID: 15128555
8.  A Comparison of Methods for Counting Viruses in Aquatic Systems 
In this study, we compared different methods—including transmission electron microscopy—and various nucleic acid labeling methods in which we used the fluorochromes 4′,6′-diamidino-2-phenylindole (DAPI), 4-[3-methyl-2,3-dihydro-(benzo-1,3-oxazole)-2-methylmethyledene]-1-(3′-trimethyl ammoniumpropyl)-quinilinium diioide (YOPRO-1), and SYBR Green I, which can be detected by epifluorescence microscopy (EM), for counting viruses in samples obtained from freshwater ecosystems whose trophic status varied and from a culture of T7 phages. From a quantitative and qualitative viewpoint, our results showed that the greatest efficiency for all ecosystems was obtained when we used the EM counting protocol in which YOPRO-1 was the label, as this fluorochrome exhibited strong and very stable fluorescence. A modification of the original protocol in which YOPRO-1 was used is recommended, because this modification makes the protocol faster and allows it to be used for routine analysis of fixed samples. Because SYBR Green I fades very quickly, the use of this fluorochrome is not recommended for systems in which the viral content is very high (>108 particles/ml), such as treated domestic sewage effluents. Experiments in which we used DNase and RNase revealed that the number of viruses determined by EM was slightly overestimated (by approximately 15%) because of interference caused by the presence of free nucleic acids.
PMCID: PMC110512  PMID: 10831400

Results 1-8 (8)