Sara Kleindienst

Sara Kleindienst
Universität Stuttgart · Institute for Sanitary Engineering, Water Quality and Solid Waste Management

Professor

About

82
Publications
20,864
Reads
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2,440
Citations
Additional affiliations
December 2017 - June 2022
University of Tuebingen
Position
  • Junior Professor
October 2017 - present
University of Tuebingen
Position
  • Group Leader
March 2015 - September 2017
University of Tuebingen
Position
  • Head of Department

Publications

Publications (82)
Article
Hydrocarbon-degrading bacteria are phylogenetically and physiologically diverse and employ layered strategies to sense hydrocarbons, respond transcriptionally, and then move toward an oil source. They then produce biopolymers that increase hydrocarbon bioavailability. This SnapShot highlights how these bacteria respond to and then remove hydrocarbo...
Article
Taxonomic assignments of anaerobic dichloromethane (DCM)-degrading bacteria remain poorly constrained but are important for understanding the microbial diversity of organisms contributing to the turnover of DCM in environmental systems. The DCM-degrading consortium RM was obtained from pristine Rio Mameyes freshwater sediment and quantitative PCR l...
Article
Full-text available
During the Deepwater Horizon oil well blowout in the Gulf of Mexico, the application of 7 million liters of chemical dispersants aimed to stimulate microbial crude oil degradation by increasing the bioavailability of oil compounds. However, the effects of dispersants on oil biodegradation rates are debated. In laboratory experiments, we simulated e...
Article
Full-text available
The Deepwater Horizon (DWH) oil well blowout generated an enormous plume of dispersed hydrocarbons that substantially altered the Gulf of Mexico's deep-sea microbial community. A significant enrichment of distinct microbial populations was observed, yet, little is known about the abundance and richness of specific microbial ecotypes involved in gas...
Article
Full-text available
Dispersants are globally and routinely applied as an emergency response to oil spills in marine ecosystems with the goal of chemically enhancing the dissolution of oil into water, which is assumed to stimulate microbially mediated oil biodegradation. However, little is known about how dispersants affect the composition of microbial communities or t...
Article
Household sand filters (SFs) are widely applied to remove iron (Fe), manganese (Mn), arsenic (As), and ammonium (NH4⁺) from groundwater in the Red River delta, Vietnam. Processes in the filters probably include a combination of biotic and abiotic reactions. However, there is limited information on the microbial communities treating varied groundwat...
Article
Full-text available
Reductive dissolution during permafrost thaw releases iron-bound organic carbon to pore-waters, rendering previously stable carbon vulnerable to microbial decomposition and subsequent release to the atmosphere. How mineral iron stability and the microbial processes influencing mineral dissolution vary during transitional permafrost thaw are poorly...
Article
Full-text available
In permafrost peatlands, up to 20% of total organic carbon (OC) is bound to reactive iron (Fe) minerals in the active layer overlying intact permafrost, potentially protecting OC from microbial degradation and transformation into greenhouse gases (GHG) such as CO2 and CH4. During the summer, shifts in runoff and soil moisture influence redox condit...
Article
Full-text available
Iron(II) [Fe(II)] oxidation coupled to denitrification is recognized as an environmentally important process in many ecosystems. However, the Fe(II)-oxidizing bacteria (FeOB) dominating autotrophic nitrate-reducing Fe(II)-oxidizing enrichment cultures, affiliated with the family Gallionellaceae, remain poorly taxonomically defined due to lack of re...
Preprint
In permafrost peatlands, up to 20% of total organic carbon (OC) is bound to reactive iron (Fe) minerals in the active layer overlying intact permafrost, potentially protecting OC from microbial degradation and transformation into greenhouse gases (GHG) such as CO2 and CH4. During the summer, shifts in runoff and soil moisture influence redox condit...
Article
Full-text available
In the mining-impacted Rio Tinto, Spain, Fe-cycling microorganisms influence the transport of heavy metals (HMs) into the Atlantic Ocean. However, it remains largely unknown how spatial and temporal hydrogeochemical gradients along the Rio Tinto shape the composition of Fe-cycling microbial communities and how this in turn affects HM mobility. Usin...
Research
https://fems-microbiology.org/femsmicroblog-rock-eating-microbes-remove-nitrate-from-groundwater/
Article
Full-text available
Autotrophic nitrate reduction coupled to Fe(II) oxidation is an important nitrate removal process in anoxic aquifers. However, it remains unknown how changes of O2 and carbon availability influence the community structure of nitrate-reducing Fe(II)-oxidizing (NRFeOx) microbial assemblages and what the genomic traits of these NRFeOx key players are....
Article
Full-text available
Autotrophic nitrate reduction coupled to Fe(II) oxidation is an important nitrate removal process in anoxic aquifers. However, it remains unknown how changes of O 2 and carbon availability influence the community structure of nitrate-reducing Fe(II)-oxidizing (NRFeOx) microbial assemblages and what the genomic traits of these NRFeOx key players are...
Article
Biochar can participate in biogeochemical electron transfer processes due to its electron-accepting and donating capabilities (i.e., geobattery) and electron conductivity (i.e., geoconductor). These two functions were separately demonstrated to play a role in biogeochemical iron cycling and methane formation. Yet, little is known about the coupled...
Article
Full-text available
Background Biosurfactants are naturally derived products that play a similar role to synthetic dispersants in oil spill response but are easily biodegradable and less toxic. Using a combination of analytical chemistry, 16S rRNA amplicon sequencing and simulation-based approaches, this study investigated the microbial community dynamics, ecological...
Preprint
Reactive iron (Fe) minerals can preserve organic carbon (OC) in soils overlying intact permafrost. With permafrost thaw, reductive dissolution of iron minerals releases Fe and OC into the porewater, potentially increasing the bioavailability of OC for microbial decomposition. However, the stability of this so-called rusty carbon sink, the microbial...
Article
Full-text available
Although arsenic (As) groundwater contamination in South and Southeast Asia is a threat to human health, mechanisms of its release from sediment to groundwater are still not fully understood. In many aquifers, Fe(III) minerals are often the main hosting phases for As and their stability is crucial for As mobility. Recently, a new mechanism for As m...
Preprint
Full-text available
Reactive iron (Fe) minerals can preserve organic carbon (OC) in soils overlying intact permafrost. With permafrost thaw, reductive dissolution of iron minerals releases Fe and OC into the porewater, potentially increasing the bioavailability of OC for microbial decomposition. However, the stability of this so-called rusty carbon sink, the microbial...
Article
Full-text available
Fe(II) oxidation coupled to nitrate reduction (NRFO) has been described for many environments. Yet very few autotrophic microorganisms catalysing NRFO have been cultivated and their diversity, as well as their mechanisms for NRFO in situ remain unclear. A novel autotrophic NRFO enrichment culture, named culture BP, was obtained from freshwater sedi...
Article
Nitrate removal in oligotrophic environments is often limited by the availability of suitable organic electron donors. Chemolithoautotrophic bacteria may play a key role in denitrification in aquifers depleted in organic carbon. Under anoxic and circumneutral pH conditions, iron(II) was hypothesized to serve as an electron donor for microbially med...
Preprint
Full-text available
Background: Biosurfactants, however, are naturally derived products that play a similar role to synthetic dispersants in oil spill response but are easily biodegradable and less toxic. Using a combination of analytical chemistry, 16S rRNA amplicon sequencing and simulation-based approaches, this study investigated the microbial community dynamics,...
Article
Nitrate reduction coupled to iron(II) oxidation (NRFO) has been recognized as an environmentally important microbial process in many freshwater ecosystems. However, well-characterized examples of autotrophic nitrate-reducing iron(II)-oxidizing bacteria are rare and their pathway of electron transfer as well as their interaction with flanking commun...
Article
Redox-driven biogeochemical element cycles play a central role in converting organic matter in aquatic ecosystems. They also perform key functions such as removing nitrate, mitigating the formation of greenhouse gases and weakening the effects of contaminants. Recent research has revealed the presence of redox-active compounds in these ecosystems w...
Article
High arsenic (As) concentrations in groundwater are a worldwide problem threatening the health of millions of people. Microbial processes are central in the (trans)formation of the As-bearing ferric and ferrous minerals, and thus regulate dissolved As levels in many aquifers. Mineralogy, microbiology and dissolved As levels can vary sharply within...
Article
Full-text available
Fe(III) minerals play a crucial role for arsenic (As) mobility in aquifers as they usually represent the main As-bearing phases. Microbial reductive dissolution of As-bearing Fe(III) minerals is responsible for the release of As and the resulting groundwater contamination in many sites worldwide. So far, in most studies mainly abiogenic iron minera...
Article
Full-text available
The application of chemical dispersants during marine oil spills can affect the community composition and activity of marine microorganisms. Several studies have indicated that certain marine hydrocarbon-degrading bacteria, such as Marinobacter spp., can be inhibited by chemical dispersants, resulting in lower abundances and/or reduced biodegradati...
Preprint
Background Although synthetic dispersants are effective in dispersing crude oil, they can alter the natural microbial response to oil and potentially hinder its biodegradation. Biosurfactants, however, are naturally derived products that play a similar role to synthetic dispersants in oil spill response but are easily biodegradable and less toxic....
Article
Full-text available
During marine oil spills, chemical dispersants are used routinely to disperse surface slicks, transferring the hydrocarbon constituents of oil into the aqueous phase. Nonetheless, a comprehensive understanding of how dispersants affect natural populations of hydrocarbon-degrading bacteria, particularly under environmentally relevant conditions, is...
Article
Full-text available
Arsenic groundwater contamination threatens the health of millions of people worldwide, particularly in South and Southeast Asia. In most cases, the release of arsenic from sediment was caused by microbial reductive dissolution of arsenic-bearing iron(III) minerals with organic carbon being used as microbial electron donor. Although in many arsenic...
Article
Full-text available
The fate of arsenic (As) in groundwater is determined by multiple interrelated microbial and abiotic processes that contribute to As (im)mobilization. Most studies to date have investigated individual processes related to As (im)mobilization rather than the complex networks present in situ. In this study, we used RNA-based microbial community analy...
Article
Full-text available
One of the major methods to identify microbial community composition, to unravel microbial population dynamics, and to explore microbial diversity in environmental samples is high-throughput DNA- or RNA-based 16S rRNA (gene) amplicon sequencing in combination with bioinformatics analyses. However, focusing on environmental samples from contrasting...
Preprint
Full-text available
Over 7 million liters of Corexit EC9500A and EC9527A were applied to the Gulf of Mexico in response to the Deepwater Horizon oil spill. The impacts of dispersants remain under debate and negative, positive, and inconclusive impacts have been reported. Here, metatrancriptomics was applied in the context of metapangenomes to microcosms that simulated...
Article
Until recently, the importance and relevance of Zetaproteobacteria were mainly thought to be restricted to high-Fe(II) environments, such as deep-sea hydrothermal vents. The two novel Mariprofundus isolates presented here originate from typical low-Fe(II) coastal marine sediments. As well as being low in Fe(II), these environments are often subject...
Article
Full-text available
Natural organic matter (NOM) can contribute to arsenic (As) mobilization as an electron donor for microbially-mediated reductive dissolution of As-bearing Fe(III) (oxyhydr)oxides. However, to investigate this process, instead of using NOM, most laboratory studies used simple fatty acids or sugars, often at relatively high concentrations. To investi...
Chapter
Microorganisms are key players in our biosphere because of their ability to degrade various organic compounds including a wide range of hydrocarbons. At hydrocarbon seeps, microorganisms with the ability to utilize diverse hydrocarbons (such as methane, short- and long-chain alkanes, or aromatic hydrocarbons) as carbon and electron source are signi...
Chapter
Traditional microbiological methods for the identification of microorganisms after they have been isolated in pure culture have revealed key players in the degradation of hydrocarbons. But have we identified them all? The conspicuous enrichment of an uncultured Oceanospirillales in a sub-surface hydrocarbon plume during the Deepwater Horizon oil sp...
Article
Full-text available
Geogenic arsenic (As) contamination of groundwater poses a major threat to global health, particularly in Asia. To mitigate this exposure, groundwater is increasingly extracted from low-As Pleistocene aquifers. This, however, disturbs groundwater flow and potentially draws high-As groundwater into low-As aquifers. Here we report a detailed characte...
Article
Oxidation of sulfide ores in the Iberian Pyrite Belt region leads to the presence of extremely high concentration of dissolved heavy metals (HMs) in the acidic water of the Rio Tinto. Fe(II) is microbially oxidized resulting in the formation of suspended particulate matter (SPM) consisting of microbial cells and Fe(III) minerals with co-precipitate...
Preprint
Full-text available
One of the major methods to identify microbial community composition, to unravel microbial population dynamics, and to explore microbial diversity in environmental samples is DNA- or RNA-based 16S rRNA (gene) amplicon sequencing. Subsequent bioinformatics analyses are required to extract valuable information from the high-throughput sequencing appr...
Article
Full-text available
Oceanic oil-degrading bacteria produce copious amounts of exopolymeric substances (EPS) that facilitate their access to oil. The fate of EPS in the water column is in part determined by activities of heterotrophic microbes capable of utilizing EPS compounds as carbon and energy sources. To evaluate the potential of natural microbial communities to...
Article
Full-text available
Nitrous oxide (N2O) is a potent greenhouse gas that also contributes to stratospheric ozone depletion. Besides microbial denitrification, abiotic nitrite reduction by Fe(II) (chemodenitrification) has the potential to be an important source of N2O. Here, using microcosms, we quantified N2O formation in coastal marine sediments under typical summer...
Article
Full-text available
Here, we present the draft genome sequence of the halotolerant photoferrotroph Chlorobium sp. strain N1. This draft genome provides insights into the genomic potential of the only marine Fe(II)-oxidizing green sulfur bacterium (GSB) available in culture and expands our views on the metabolic capabilities of Fe(II)-oxidizing GSB more generally.
Article
Naturally produced and anthropogenically released DCM can reside in anoxic environments, yet little is known about the diversity of organisms, enzymes, and mechanisms involved in carbon-chlorine bond cleavage in the absence of oxygen. A proteogenomic approach identified two RDases and four corrinoid-dependent methyltransferases expressed by the DCM...
Article
To distinguish between biotic and abiotic processes in laboratory experiments with environmental samples, an effective sterilization method is required that prevents biological activity but does not change physico-geochemical properties of samples. We compared standard sterilization methods with respect to their impact on microbial abundance and ac...
Presentation
Full-text available
Elevated concentrations of As in groundwater leading to a serious health risk for millions of people have been reported at many places all over the world. Most existing investigations are limited to a uni-disciplinary research approach, thereby neglecting the interactions between hydrochemistry, geochemistry, mineralogy, microbiology and groundwate...
Conference Paper
Full-text available
Nitrous oxide (N2O) is a major greenhouse gas and contributes to stratospheric ozone depletion. Besides microbial denitrification, abiotic nitrite reduction by Fe(II) (chemodenitrification) has the potential to be an important source of N2O. The contribution of chemodenitrification to the global N2O budget is currently unknown. We therefore quanti...
Presentation
Full-text available
Pyrite oxidation in the Iberian Pyrite Belt mines leads to a high input of dissolved heavy metals into the Rio Tinto. Despite of these potentially harmful and toxic conditions, the Rio Tinto is inhabited by acidophilic Fe(II)-oxidizing microorganisms enriching the acidic water with dissolved Fe(III). However, the hydrochemistry of the river is dram...
Article
The oxidation of Fe(II) by anoxygenic photosynthetic bacteria was likely a key contributor to Earth's biosphere prior to the evolution of oxygenic photosynthesis and is still found in a diverse range of modern environments. All known phototrophic Fe(II) oxidizers can utilize a wide range of substrates, thus making them very metabolically flexible....
Article
Full-text available
Iron is the most abundant redox‐active metal in the Earth's crust. The one electron transfer between the two most common redox states, Fe(II) and Fe(III), plays a role in a huge range of environmental processes from mineral formation and dissolution to contaminant remediation and global biogeochemical cycling. It has been appreciated for more than...
Article
The cycling of iron between redox states leads to the precipitation and dissolution of minerals, which can in turn impact other major biogeochemical cycles, such as those of carbon, nitrogen, phosphorus and sulfur. Anoxygenic phototrophs are one of the few drivers of Fe(II) oxidation in anoxic environments and are thought to contribute significantl...
Article
As a consequence of Earth's surface oxygenation, ocean geochemistry changed from ferruginous (iron(II)‐rich) into more complex ferro‐euxinic (iron(II)‐sulphide‐rich) conditions during the Paleoproterozoic. This transition must have had profound implications for the Proterozoic microbial community that existed within the ocean water and bottom sedim...
Conference Paper
Full-text available
Microorganisms can oxidize Fe(II) with oxygen (microaerophilic Fe(II)-oxidizers (FeOx)), with nitrate (nitrate-reducing FeOx) or with light during CO2 reduction (anoxygenic phototrophic FeOx). Recently, it was shown that these three physiological types of neutrophilic FeOx co-exist in marine (Kalø Vig and Norsminde Fjord, coastal regions in Aarhus...
Article
The enrichment culture KS is one of the few existing autotrophic, nitrate-reducing Fe(II)-oxidizing cultures that can be continuously transferred without an organic carbon source. We used a combination of Catalyzed Amplification Reporter Deposition Fluorescence In-Situ Hybridization (CARD-FISH) and Nanoscale Secondary Ion Mass Spectrometry (NanoSIM...
Article
The microbial mixed culture RM grows with dichloromethane (DCM) as the sole energy source generating acetate, methane, chloride, and biomass as products. Chloromethane (CM) was not an intermediate during DCM utilization consistent with the observation that CM could not replace DCM as a growth substrate. Interestingly, cultures that received DCM and...