Environmental Science and Pollution Research

, Volume 26, Issue 9, pp 9379–9389 | Cite as

Vertical variation of bulk and metabolically active prokaryotic community in sediment of a hypereutrophic freshwater lake

  • Shun TsuboiEmail author
  • Ayato Kohzu
  • Akio Imai
  • Kazuhiro Iwasaki
  • Shigeki YamamuraEmail author
Short Research and Discussion Article


This study was conducted to acquire novel insight into differences between bulk (16S rDNA) and metabolically active (16S rRNA) prokaryotic communities in the sediment of a hypereutrophic lake (Japan). In the bulk communities, the class Deltaproteobacteria and the order Methanomicrobiales were dominant among bacteria and methanogens. In the metabolically active communities, the class Alphaproteobacteria and the order Methanomicrobiales and the family Methanosaetaceae were frequently found among bacteria and methanogens. Unlike the bulk communities of prokaryotes, the composition of the metabolically active communities varied remarkably vertically, and their diversities greatly decreased in the lower 20 cm of sediment. The metabolically active prokaryotic community in the sediment core was divided into three sections based on their similarity: 0–6 cm (section 1), 9–18 cm (section 2), and 21–42 cm (section 3). This sectional distribution was consistent with the vertical pattern of the sedimentary stable carbon and nitrogen isotope ratios and oxidation–reduction potential in the porewater. These results suggest that vertical disturbance of the sediment may influence the communities and functions of metabolically active prokaryotes in freshwater lake sediments. Overall, our results indicate that rRNA analysis may be more effective than rDNA analysis for evaluation of relationships between actual microbial processes and material cycling in lake sediments.


Prokaryotic community Freshwater lake Sediment Vertical disturbance 16S rDNA 16S rRNA 



The authors thank the staff at the National Institute for Environmental Studies for collecting sediment samples. The authors also thank Ms. Shigemi Taguchi for assistance with the clone library constructions. We also thank two anonymous reviewers for their constructive comments and suggestions, which helped to improve this paper.

Supplementary material

11356_2019_4465_MOESM1_ESM.pptx (55 kb)
ESM 1 (PPTX 55.4 kb)


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag GmbH Germany, part of Springer Nature 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Center for Regional Environmental ResearchNational Institute for Environmental Studies (NIES)TsukubaJapan
  2. 2.Institute for Agro-Environmental SciencesNational Agriculture and Food Research Organization (NARO)TsukubaJapan
  3. 3.Lake Biwa Branch OfficeNational Institute for Environmental Studies (NIES)OtsuJapan

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