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Title: Structure and Function of Subsurface Microbial Communities Affecting Radionuclide Transport and Bio-immobilization

The goal of this research project was to employ a multi-disciplinary team to investigate the DOE-ERSP Field Research Center at Oak Ridge, TN (ORFRC), which contains well-defined subsurface contaminant plumes with contrasting pH and redox conditions. Part of the team would pursue cultivation-independent characterization of the microbial groups catalyzing relevant biogeochemical reactions to gain an understanding of the physiological mechanisms controlling radionuclide immobilization. Other team members would focus on cultivation and physiological characterization of model microorganisms from the site using single cell sorting methods. In order to understand and predict the in situ function of microbial communities, the PIs hope to develop new strategies for cultivation and to couple phylogenetic structure with microbial community function. Specific objectives by the Rutgers group was to discern the active bacteria at the Oak Ridge Research Field Challenge Site: 1. by applying stable isotope probing techniques to enrichment cultures developed from Florida State University; 2. by fingerprinting intact rRNA from groundwater samples obtained along the various flow pathways at ORFRC; and 3. by identifying functional genes for N and S cycling along the flowpaths to aid in detection of active bacteria.
Publication Date:
OSTI Identifier:
Report Number(s):
Final Report
DOE Contract Number:
Resource Type:
Technical Report
Research Org:
Rutgers, the State University of New Jersey
Sponsoring Org:
USDOE Office of Science (SC), Biological and Environmental Research (BER) (SC-23)
Country of Publication:
United States
54 ENVIRONMENTAL SCIENCES; 58 GEOSCIENCES; Final report; subsurface microbial communities, stable isotope probing