Distribution of anammox bacteria in domestic WWTPs and their enrichments evaluated by real-time quantitative PCR
Enrichment of anaerobic ammonium oxidation (anammox) bacteria using five activated sludges in three domestic wastewater treatment plants (WWTPs) were processed in a short term of 70 days and evaluated by real-time quantitative PCR (RTQ-PCR). Before the enrichment, building phylogenetic trees of Planctomycetes phylum in four reactors of sequencing batch reactor (SBR), anoxic and oxic reactors of anaerobic–anoxic–oxic (A2O) process, and rotating biological contactor (RBC) revealed six groups of distantly relative genera of Planctomyces, Pirellula, Gemmata, Isophaera, Candidatus and putative anammox bacteria. All clones of Candidatus sp. were affiliated with anammox bacteria and the majority of anammox clones were related to Planctomycete KSU-1 (AB057453). The discovery of anammox bacteria in raw activated sludges provided a partial rationale for the utilization of activated sludge as a seeding source of the anammox process. To verify the activity of anammox bacteria in the activated sludges, enrichment cultivations were conducted using SBRs. The enrichment of anammox bacteria resulted in the significant anammox activity of three samples. Quantification of 16S rRNA gene of anammox bacteria using RTQ-PCR showed the highest concentration of anammox bacteria of 2.48 ± 0.22 × 109 copies of 16S rRNA gene/mg-volatile suspended solids (VSS), which was the same order of magnitude as that of the referential granular anammox sludge, 6.23 ± 0.59 × 109 copies of 16S rRNA gene/mg-VSS, taken from an anammox upflow anaerobic sludge blanket (UASB) reactor. The doubling time of anammox bacteria enriched in this study was 1.18 days. The growth yield of anammox bacteria enriched in this study was 4.75 ± 0.57 × 106 copies of 16S rRNA gene/mg of ammonium- and nitrite-nitrogen, which was similar to 4.50 ± 0.61 × 106 copies of 16S rRNA gene/mg of ammonium- and nitrite-nitrogen for the referential anammox sludge. Substrate uptake rates of three successful enrichments at the end of the enrichment were comparable to those of granular and suspended anammox sludges. Rapid enrichment of anammox bacteria using activated sludge could offer an alternative method for obtaining a large volume of seeding anammox sludge.
Journal: Process Biochemistry - Volume 45, Issue 3, March 2010, Pages 323–334