AME 37:137-148 (2004)  -  doi:10.3354/ame037137

Growth dynamics within bacterial communities in riverine and estuarine batch cultures

Silke Langenheder1,*, Veljo Kisand2,3, Eva S. Lindström1,4, Johan Wikner2, Lars J. Tranvik1

1Department of Limnology, Evolutionary Biology Centre, Uppsala University, 75236 Uppsala, Sweden
2Umeå Marine Sciences Centre, Norrbyn, 91020 Hörnefors, Sweden
3Present address: Institute for Chemistry and Biology of the Marine Environment (ICBM), University of Oldenburg, 26111 Oldenburg, Germany
4Present address: Département des sciences biologiques, Université du Québec à Montréal, Montréal H3C 3P8, Canada

ABSTRACT: We investigated temporal changes in community composition of bacteria growing on riverine dissolved organic carbon. Batch cultures were adjusted to riverine or estuarine salinity levels and inoculated with bacteria from these 2 environments to test whether growth patterns of bacterial taxa are influenced by salinity and/or the source of the inoculum. Changes in bacterial community composition at different stages of the growth phase were studied by 16S rDNA denaturing gradient gel electrophoresis (DGGE). Furthermore, the growth dynamics of 7 bacteria previously isolated from the estuary were followed by quantitative DNA-DNA hybridization. Growth dynamics within bacterial communities were significantly influenced by the source of the inoculum but not by salinity, suggesting that slight changes in salinity, to which riverine bacteria are exposed when discharged into the Northern Baltic Sea, are not a major regulating factor of community dynamics. Additionally, our results indicated only minor differences in the appearance and growth of bacteria when examined by quantitative DNA-DNA hybridization, whereas DGGE banding patterns suggested that there were fast- and slow-growing types of bacteria.


KEY WORDS: Heterotrophic bacteria · Growth dynamics · Batch cultures · DGGE · DNA-DNA hybridization


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