High-throughput metagenomic analysis of petroleum-contaminated soil microbiome reveals the versatility in xenobiotic aromatics metabolism

Yun-Juan Bao , Zixiang Xu , Yang Li , Zhi Yao , Jibin Sun , Hui Song


Received April 16, 2016,Revised June 29, 2016, Accepted August 19, 2016, Available online October 01, 2016

Volume 29,2017,Pages 25-35

The soil with petroleum contamination is one of the most studied soil ecosystems due to its rich microorganisms for hydrocarbon degradation and broad applications in bioremediation. However, our understanding of the genomic properties and functional traits of the soil microbiome is limited. In this study, we used high-throughput metagenomic sequencing to comprehensively study the microbial community from petroleum-contaminated soils near Tianjin Dagang oilfield in eastern China. The analysis reveals that the soil metagenome is characterized by high level of community diversity and metabolic versatility. The metageome community is predominated by γ-Proteobacteria and α-Proteobacteria, which are key players for petroleum hydrocarbon degradation. The functional study demonstrates over-represented enzyme groups and pathways involved in degradation of a broad set of xenobiotic aromatic compounds, including toluene, xylene, chlorobenzoate, aminobenzoate, DDT, methylnaphthalene, and bisphenol. A composite metabolic network is proposed for the identified pathways, thus consolidating our identification of the pathways. The overall data demonstrated the great potential of the studied soil microbiome in the xenobiotic aromatics degradation. The results not only establish a rich reservoir for novel enzyme discovery but also provide putative applications in bioremediation.

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