Elucidation of taste- and odor-producing bacteria and toxigenic cyanobacteria in a Midwestern drinking water supply reservoir by shotgun metagenomics analysis

Applied and Environmental Microbiology
By: , and 

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Abstract

While commonplace in clinical settings, DNA-based assays for identification or enumeration of drinking water pathogens and other biological contaminants remain widely unadopted by the monitoring community. In this study, shotgun metagenomics was used to identify taste-and-odor producers and toxin-producing cyanobacteria over a 2-year period in a drinking water reservoir. The sequencing data implicated several cyanobacteria, including Anabaena spp.,Microcystis spp., and an unresolved member of the order Oscillatoriales as the likely principal producers of geosmin, microcystin, and 2-methylisoborneol (MIB), respectively. To further demonstrate this, quantitative PCR (qPCR) assays targeting geosmin-producing Anabaena and microcystin-producing Microcystis were utilized, and these data were fitted using generalized linear models and compared with routine monitoring data, including microscopic cell counts, sonde-based physicochemical analyses, and assays of all inorganic and organic nitrogen and phosphorus forms and fractions. The qPCR assays explained the greatest variation in observed geosmin (adjusted R2 = 0.71) and microcystin (adjusted R2 = 0.84) concentrations over the study period, highlighting their potential for routine monitoring applications. The origin of the monoterpene cyclase required for MIB biosynthesis was putatively linked to a periphytic cyanobacterial mat attached to the concrete drinking water inflow structure. We conclude that shotgun metagenomics can be used to identify microbial agents involved in water quality deterioration and to guide PCR assay selection or design for routine monitoring purposes. Finally, we offer estimates of microbial diversity and metagenomic coverage of our data sets for reference to others wishing to apply shotgun metagenomics to other lacustrine systems.

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Additional publication details

Publication type Article
Publication Subtype Journal Article
Title Elucidation of taste- and odor-producing bacteria and toxigenic cyanobacteria in a Midwestern drinking water supply reservoir by shotgun metagenomics analysis
Series title Applied and Environmental Microbiology
DOI 10.1128/AEM.01334-16
Volume 82
Issue 17
Year Published 2016
Language English
Publisher American Society for Microbiology
Contributing office(s) Kansas Water Science Center
Description 10 p.
First page 5410
Last page 5420
Country United States
State Kansas
Other Geospatial Cheney Reservoir
Online Only (Y/N) N
Additional Online Files (Y/N) N