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APPLIED AND ENVIRONMENTAL MICROBIOLOGY, 0099-2240/01/$04.00 0 DOI: 10.1128/AEM.67.7.29222926.2001
 

Summary: APPLIED AND ENVIRONMENTAL MICROBIOLOGY,
0099-2240/01/$04.00 0 DOI: 10.1128/AEM.67.7.29222926.2001
July 2001, p. 29222926 Vol. 67, No. 7
Copyright 2001, American Society for Microbiology. All Rights Reserved.
Photosynthetic and Phylogenetic Primers for Detection of
Anoxygenic Phototrophs in Natural Environments
LAURIE A. ACHENBACH,* JENNIFER CAREY, AND MICHAEL T. MADIGAN
Department of Microbiology and Center for Systematic Biology, Southern Illinois University, Carbondale, Illinois
Received 17 January 2001/Accepted 10 April 2001
Primer sets were designed to target specific 16S ribosomal DNA (rDNA) sequences of photosynthetic
bacteria, including the green sulfur bacteria, the green nonsulfur bacteria, and the members of the Heliobac-
teriaceae (a gram-positive phylum). Due to the phylogenetic diversity of purple sulfur and purple nonsulfur
phototrophs, the 16S rDNA gene was not an appropriate target for phylogenetic rDNA primers. Thus, a primer
set was designed that targets the pufM gene, encoding the M subunit of the photosynthetic reaction center,
which is universally distributed among purple phototrophic bacteria. The pufM primer set amplified DNAs not
only from purple sulfur and purple nonsulfur phototrophs but also from Chloroflexus species, which also
produce a reaction center like that of the purple bacteria. Although the purple bacterial reaction center
structurally resembles green plant photosystem II, the pufM primers did not amplify cyanobacterial DNA,
further indicating their specificity for purple anoxyphototrophs. This combination of phylogenetic- and pho-
tosynthesis-specific primers covers all groups of known anoxygenic phototrophs and as such shows promise as

  

Source: Achenbach, Laurie A. - Department of Microbiology, Southern Illinois University

 

Collections: Environmental Sciences and Ecology; Environmental Management and Restoration Technologies; Biology and Medicine