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Molecular biology techniques used in wastewater treatment: An overview

Paper ID Volume ID Publish Year Pages File Format Full-Text
35948 45116 2007 15 PDF Available
Title
Molecular biology techniques used in wastewater treatment: An overview
Abstract

Identification of microorganisms by conventional methods requires the isolation of pure cultures followed by laborious characterization experiments. These procedures are therefore inadequate for study of the biodiversity of a natural or engineered ecosystem. A new set of molecular techniques developed during the 1990s revolutionized microbial ecology research. Among these techniques, cloning and the creation of a gene library, denaturant gradient gel electrophoresis (DGGE) and fluorescent in situ hybridization with DNA probes (FISH) stand out. Cloning provides very precise taxonomical information, but is time consuming and requires specialized personnel and so its introduction in wastewater treatment has been slow. DGGE is a rapid and simple method that provides characteristic band patterns for different samples, allowing quick sample profiling, while retaining the possibility of a more thorough genetic analysis by sequencing of particular bands. FISH makes possible to identify microorganisms at any desired taxonomical level, depending on the specificity of the probe used. It is the only quantitative molecular biology technique, although quantification is either complex or tedious and subjective. Combination with a confocal laser-scanning microscope allows the visualization of three-dimensional microbial structures (granules, biofilms). The methods discussed have deepened our understanding of the microbiology of biological wastewater treatment. PCR-based methods (cloning and DGGE) have proved suitable for identifying the microorganisms that form the sludge. Both DGGE and FISH have been extensively employed. FISH is currently being used for elucidation of the composition, quantification and distribution of different bacterial groups in granules and biofilms, as well as their structure and architecture.

Keywords
Wastewater treatment; Anaerobic digestion; Molecular ecology; Molecular biology techniques; Denaturant gradient gel electrophoresis (DGGE); Fluorescent in situ hybridization (FISH); Gene library
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Molecular biology techniques used in wastewater treatment: An overview
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Publisher
Database: Elsevier - ScienceDirect
Journal: Process Biochemistry - Volume 42, Issue 2, February 2007, Pages 119–133
Authors
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Subjects
Physical Sciences and Engineering Chemical Engineering Bioengineering
Get Full-Text Now
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Price was $35.95
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