A haloalkaliphilic sulfate-respiring bacterium, strain SLSR-1, was isolated from a lactate-fed stable enrichment culture originally obtained from the extreme environment of Searles Lake, California. The isolate proved capable of growth via sulfate-reduction over a broad range of salinities (125–330 g/L), although growth was slowest at salt-saturation. Strain SLSR-1 was also capable of growth via dissimilatory arsenate-reduction and displayed an even broader range of salinity tolerance (50–330 g/L) when grown under these conditions. Strain SLSR-1 could also grow via dissimilatory nitrate reduction to ammonia. Growth experiments in the presence of high borate concentrations indicated a greater sensitivity of sulfate-reduction than arsenate-respiration to this naturally abundant anion in Searles Lake. Strain SLSR-1 contained genes involved in both sulfate-reduction (dsrAB) and arsenate respiration (arrA). Amplicons of 16S rRNA gene sequences obtained from DNA extracted from Searles Lake sediment revealed the presence of close relatives of strain SLSR-1 as part of the flora of this ecosystem despite the fact that sulfate-reduction activity could not be detected in situ. We conclude that strain SLSR-1 can only achieve growth via arsenate-reduction under the current chemical conditions prevalent at Searles Lake. Strain SLSR-1 is a deltaproteobacterium in the family Desulfohalobiacea of anaerobic, haloalkaliphilic bacteria, for which we propose the name Desulfohalophilus alkaliarsenatis gen. nov., sp. nov.
Additional Publication Details
Desulfohalophilus alkaliarsenatis gen. nov., sp. nov., an extremely halophilic sulfate- and arsenate-respiring bacterium from Searles Lake, California