Microbial community structures in an integrated two-phase anaerobic bioreactor fed by fruit vegetable wastes and wheat straw

Chong Wang , Jiane Zuo , Xiaojie Chen , Wei Xing , Linan Xing , Peng Li , Xiangyang Lu , Chao Li


Received January 07, 2014,Revised June 06, 2014, Accepted , Available online December 22, 2014

Volume 26,2014,Pages 2484-2492

The microbial community structures in an integrated two-phase anaerobic reactor (ITPAR) were investigated by 16S rDNA clone library technology. The 75 L reactor was designed with a 25 L rotating acidogenic unit at the top and a 50 L conventional upflow methanogenic unit at the bottom, with a recirculation connected to the two units. The reactor had been operated for 21 stages to co-digest fruit/vegetable wastes and wheat straw, which showed a very good biogas production and decomposition of cellulosic materials. The results showed that many kinds of cellulose and glycan decomposition bacteria related with Bacteroidales, Clostridiales and Syntrophobacterales were dominated in the reactor, with more bacteria community diversities in the acidogenic unit. The methanogens were mostly related with Methanosaeta, Methanosarcina, Methanoculleus, Methanospirillum and Methanobacterium; the predominating genus Methanosaeta, accounting for 40.5%, 54.2%, 73.6% and 78.7% in four samples from top to bottom, indicated a major methanogenesis pathway by acetoclastic methanogenesis in the methanogenic unit. The beta diversity indexes illustrated a more similar distribution of bacterial communities than that of methanogens between acidogenic unit andmethanogenic unit. The differentiation of methanogenic community composition in two phases, as well as pH values and volatile fatty acid (VFA) concentrations confirmed the phase separation of the ITPAR. Overall, the results of this study demonstrated that the special designing of ITPAR maintained a sufficient number of methanogens, more diverse communities and stronger syntrophic associations among microorganisms, which made two phase anaerobic digestion of cellulosic materials more efficient.

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