Diversity and distribution of pigmented heterotrophic bacteria in marine environments
- 海洋环境－已发表论文 
A systematic investigation of marine pigmented heterotrophic bacteria (PHB) based on the cultivation method and sequencing analysis of 16S rRNA genes was conducted in Chinese coastal and shelf waters and the Pacific Ocean. Both the abundance of PHB and the ratio of PHB to CFU decreased along trophic gradients from coastal to oceanic waters, with the highest values of 9.9 x 10(3) cell mL(-1) and 39.6%, respectively, in the Yangtze River Estuary. In contrast to the total heterotrophic bacteria (TB) and CFU, which were present in the whole water column, PHB were primarily confined to the euphotic zone, with the highest abundance of PHB and ratio of PHB to CFU occurring in surface water. In total, 247 pigmented isolates were obtained during this study, and the phylogenetic analysis showed a wide genetic diversity covering 25 genera of six phylogenetic classes: Alphaproteobacteria, Gammaproteobacteria, Actinobacteria, Bacilli, Flavobacteria and Sphingobacteria. PHB belonging to Alphaproteobacteria, Flavobacteria and Sphingobacteria were obtained mainly from the South China Sea and East China Sea; PHB from the Pacific Ocean water were predominantly affiliated with Gammaproteobacteria, and most isolates from the Yangtze River Estuary fell into the classes Actinobacteria and Bacilli. The isolates exhibited various colours (e.g. golden, yellow, red, pink and orange), with genus or species specificity. Furthermore, the pigment of PHB cells absorbed light mainly in the wavelength range between 450 and 550 nm. In conclusion, our work has revealed that PHB with broad genetic diversity are widely distributed in the marine environment, and may account for up to 39.6% of culturable bacteria, equivalent to 1.4% of the total microbial community. This value might even be underestimated because it is probable that not all pigmented bacteria were isolated. Their abundance and genetic distribution are heavily influenced by environmental properties, such as light and nutrition, suggesting that they have important roles in the marine ecosystem, especially in the absorption of visible light.