GeoChip Applications for Analysing Soil and Water Microbial Communities in Oil-contaminated Sites
Yuting Liang, Liangyin Yi and Chaopeng Song
from: Microarrays: Current Technology, Innovations and Applications (Edited by: Zhili He). Caister Academic Press, U.K. (2014)
Oil contamination of soils, waters and sediments has become a global issue. Understanding the functional diversity, composition, dynamics and metabolic potential of microbial communities is critical for successful bioremediation of oil-contaminated sites. As an ideal metagenomic tool, GeoChip, a functional gene array, has been widely used in tracking microbial functional genes in oil contaminated soil, aquifer, sea water, and sediment environments. Those studies indicated that the overall microbial functional composition and structure changed in response to oil contamination. Although a decreased microbial diversity by oil-contamination is always observed, GeoChip detected that the hydrocarbon degrading genes were stimulated in both oil contaminated soils and deep sea oil plume if contamination occurred, indicating the potential of indigenous microbes in oil removal. GeoChip also provided useful information about the dynamics of functional genes involved in important geochemical processes in oil contaminated sites, such as carbon (C), nitrogen (N), phosphorus (P) and sulfur (S) cycling. The relationship between the abundance of microbial functional genes and oil contamination and other environmental variables was also examined by GeoChip. In addition, the dynamics of microbial functional genes during remediation of oil contaminated sites was studied with GeoChip. However, several challenges remain in applications of GeoChip for microbial community analysis in oil-contaminated sites read more ...