Stable-isotope probing and metagenomics reveal predation by protozoa drives E. Coli removal in slow sand filters

Haig, Sarah Jane, Schirmer, Melanie, D'Amore, Rosalinda, Gibbs, Joseph, Davies, Robert L., Collins, Gavin and Quince, Christopher (2015) Stable-isotope probing and metagenomics reveal predation by protozoa drives E. Coli removal in slow sand filters. ISME Journal, 9. pp. 797-808. ISSN 1751-7362

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Stable-isotope probing and metagenomics were applied to study samples taken from laboratory-scale slow sand filters 0.5, 1, 2, 3 and 4 h after challenging with 13 C-labelled Escherichia coli to determine the mechanisms and organisms responsible for coliform removal. Before spiking, the filters had been continuously operated for 7 weeks using water from the River Kelvin, Glasgow as their influent source. Direct counts and quantitative PCR assays revealed a clear predator-prey response between protozoa and E. Coli. The importance of top-down trophic-interactions was confirmed by metagenomic analysis, identifying several protozoan and viral species connected to E. Coli attrition, with protozoan grazing responsible for the majority of the removal. In addition to top-down mechanisms, indirect mechanisms, such as algal reactive oxygen species-induced lysis, and mutualistic interactions between algae and fungi, were also associated with coliform removal. The findings significantly further our understanding of the processes and trophic interactions underpinning E. Coli removal. This study provides an example for similar studies, and the opportunity to better understand, manage and enhance E. Coli removal by allowing the creation of more complex trophic interaction models.

Item Type: Article
Additional Information: Funding Information: S-JH is supported by a Lord Kelvin/Adam Smith Research scholarship from the University of Glasgow. MS is supported by Unilever R&D, Port Sunlight, Bedington, UK. GC is supported by a European Research Council award (3C-BIOTECH; 261330). CQ is supported by an EPSRC Career Acceleration Fellowship award (EP/ H003851/1). A special thanks to the GU68 Engineers Trust, Ian Scouller, Brian Robb, Tim Montgomery, Robert Boyd and Cindy Smith without whom this work would not have been possible. Publisher Copyright: © 2015 International Society for Microbial Ecology All rights reserved.
Uncontrolled Keywords: microbiology,ecology, evolution, behavior and systematics ,/dk/atira/pure/subjectarea/asjc/2400/2404
Faculty \ School: Faculty of Science > School of Biological Sciences
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Depositing User: LivePure Connector
Date Deposited: 09 Sep 2022 14:30
Last Modified: 20 Oct 2022 19:31
DOI: 10.1038/ismej.2014.175

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