Changes in the actinomycetal communities during continuous thermophilic composting as revealed by denaturing gradient gel electrophoresis and quantitative PCR.

College of Environmental Science and Engineering, Hunan University, Changsha, Hunan Province 410082, China.
Bioresource Technology (Impact Factor: 5.04). 09/2010; 102(2):1383-8. DOI: 10.1016/j.biortech.2010.09.034
Source: PubMed

ABSTRACT Actinomycetes degrade cellulose and solubilize lignin during composting. Changes in the diversity of the actinomycetal communities and the 16S rDNA copy numbers of actinomycetes were monitored by denaturing gradient gel electrophoresis (DGGE) and quantitative PCR (qPCR), respectively, during continuous thermophilic composting (CTC) and traditional composting (TC). qPCR indicated that the copy numbers from the CTC samples were 25-80% higher than those from the TC samples during similar phases of active composting and they were lower than 3×10(9) gene copies/g (dry weight) in the mature compost from both runs. DGGE showed a more diverse actinomycetal community in the CTC than in TC, averaging 16 bands as compared to 12 bands, at the post peak temperature phase. The study suggested that temperatures higher than 50 °C in CTC benefited the growth of actinomycetes.

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