2018 Volume 64 Issue 5 Pages 221-231
Acetate is a significant intermediate of anaerobic fermentation. There are two pathways for converting acetate to CH4 and CO2: acetoclastic methanogenesis by acetoclastic methanogens, and syntrophic acetate oxidation by acetate-oxidizing bacteria (AOB) and hydrogenotrophic methanogens. Detailed investigations of syntrophic acetate-oxidizing bacteria (SAOB) should contribute to the elucidation of the microbial mechanisms of methanogenesis. In this study, we investigated the major phylogenetic groups of acetate-utilizing bacteria (AUB) in a mesophilic methanogenic chemostat fed with acetate as the sole carbon source by using DNA stable isotope probing (SIP) technology. The results indicated that acetoclastic methanogenesis and acetate oxidization/hydrogenotrophic methanogenesis coexisted in the mesophilic chemostat fed with acetate, operated at a dilution rate of 0.1 d–1. OTU Ace13(9-17) (KU869530), Ace13(9-4) (KU667241), and Ace13(9-23) (KU667236), assigned to the phyla Firmicutes and Bacteroidetes, were probably potential SAOB in the chemostat, which needs further investigation. Species in the phyla Proteobacteria, Deferribacteres, Acidobacteria, Spirochaetes and Actinobacteria were probably capable of utilizing acetate for their growth. Methanoculleus was likely to be the preferred hydrogenotrophic methanogen for syntrophy with AOB in the chemostat.