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TitleEndurance of methanogenic archaea in anaerobic bioreactors treating oleate-based wastewater
Author(s)Salvador, A. F.
Cavaleiro, A. J.
Sousa, D. Z.
Alves, M. M.
Pereira, M. A.
KeywordsAnaerobic treatment
High-rate bioreactor
16S rRNA gene
Issue date2013
JournalApplied Microbiology and Biotechnology
Abstract(s)Methanogenic archaea are reported as very sensitive to lipids and long chain fatty acids (LCFA). Therefore, in conventional anaerobic processes, methane recovery during LCFA-rich wastewater treatment is usually low. By applying a start-up strategy, based on a sequence of step feeding and reaction cycles, an oleate-rich wastewater was efficiently treated at an organic loading rate of 21 kg COD m(-3) day(-1) (50 % as oleate), showing a methane recovery of 72 %. In the present work, the archaeal community developed in that reactor is investigated using a 16S rRNA gene approach. This is the first time that methanogens present in a bioreactor converting efficiently high loads of LCFA to methane are monitored. Denaturing gradient gel electrophoresis profiling showed that major changes on the archaeal community took place during the bioreactor start-up, where phases of continuous feeding were alternated with batch phases. After the start-up, a stable archaeal community (similarity higher than 84 %) was observed and maintained throughout the continuous operation. This community exhibited high LCFA tolerance and high acetoclastic and hydrogenotrophic activity. Cloning and sequencing results showed that Methanobacterium- and Methanosaeta-like microorganisms prevailed in the system and were able to tolerate and endure during prolonged exposure to high LCFA loads, despite the previously reported LCFA sensitivity of methanogens.
AccessOpen access
Appears in Collections:CEB - Publicações em Revistas/Séries Internacionais / Publications in International Journals/Series

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