Enrichment and characteristics of mixed methane-oxidizing bacteria from a Chinese coal mine

Applied Microbiology and Biotechnology
Hao JiangXin-Hui Xing


In methane-rich environments, methane-oxidizing bacteria usually occur predominantly among consortia including other types of microorganisms. In this study, artificial coal bed gas and methane gas were used to enrich mixed methanotrophic cultures from the soil of a coal mine in China, respectively. The changes in microbial community structure and function during the enrichment were examined. The microbial diversity was reduced as the enrichment proceeded, while the capacity for methane oxidation was significantly enhanced by the increased abundance of methanotrophs. The proportion of type II methanotrophs increased greatly from 7.84 % in the sampled soil to about 50 % in the enrichment cultures, due to the increase of methane concentration. After the microbial community of the cultures got stable, Methylomonas and Methylocystis became the dominant type I and type II methanotrophs, while Methylophilus was the prevailing methylotroph. The sequences affiliated with pigment-producing strains, Methylomonas rubra, Hydrogenophaga sp. AH-24, and Flavobacterium cucumis, could explain the orange appearance of the cultures. Comparing the two cultures, the multi-carbon sources in the artificial coal bed gas caused more variety of non-metha...Continue Reading


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