Cyanobacterial diversity in mat sample obtained from hypersaline desert, Rann of Kachchh
Rann of Kachchh (RoK) is a unique geoformation, which is exposed to dynamic environmental changes such as salinity, temperature, and nutrients throughout the year. In this study, the pooled mat sample was examined for the cyanobacterial community structure using culture-dependent and culture-independent approaches. Taxonomic profiling was studied using amplicon sequencing that revealed the enrichment of Pseudanabaenales and Oscillatoriales by QIIME and MG-RAST, respectively. Other abundant orders were represented by Chroococcales, Nostocales, and unclassified cyanobacteria by both approaches. Nine cyanobacterial cultures were isolated from mat samples showing 90–98% similarities with available sequences in GenBank. The culture-dependent study suggested that mat was dominated by cyanobacterial orders such as Oscillatoriales—filamentous and Chroococcales—unicellular. Our results from the culture-dependent approach also indicated that despite high similarities in gene sequences, six cyanobacteria fall into the separate clade in the phylogenetic analysis that could be signs of evolution due to an extreme environment. Cultured isolates are correlated well with abundant taxa from amplicon sequencing. Further, protein profiling was done specifically for phycobiliproteins which will be helpful to elucidate their roles in light harvesting and energy transfer mechanism in the unique environment of RoK.
KeywordsCyanobacteria Microbial mat Diversity Amplicon sequencing Evolution of cyanobacteria
Meta Genome Rapid Annotation using Subsystem Technology
Operational taxonomic units
Quantitative insights into microbial ecology
Rann of Kachchh
DM acknowledges to University Grants Commission (UGC), New Delhi for providing financial support under UGC-BSR Faculty Fellowship and Department of Biotechnology, New Delhi (BT/PR15686/AAQ/3/811/2016). RPR is grateful to the University Grants Commission (UGC), New Delhi, India for the Dr. D. S. Kothari Postdoctoral Research Grant.
Compliance with ethical standards
Conflict of interest
The authors declare that they have no competing interests.
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