Buckley, D. H., J. R. Graber, and T. M. Schmidt. 1998. Phylogenetic analysis of nonthermophilic members of the Kingdom Crenarchaeota and their diversity and abundance in soils. Applied and Environmental Microbiology 64:4333-4339.
Within the last several years, molecular techniques have uncovered numerous 16S rRNA gene (rDNA) sequences which represent a unique and globally distributed lineage of the kingdom Crenarchaeota that is phylogenetically distinct from currently characterized crenarchaeotal species. rDNA sequences of members of this novel crenarchaeotal group have been recovered from low- to moderate-temperature environments (1.5 to 32°C), in contrast to the high-temperature environments (temperature, >80°C) required for growth of the currently recognized crenarchaeotal species. We determined the diversity and abundance of the nonthermophilic members of the Crenarchaeota in soil samples taken from cultivated and uncultivated fields located at the Kellogg Biological Station’s Long-Term Ecological Research site (Hickory Corners, Mich.). Clones were generated from 16S rDNA that was amplified by using broad-specificity archaeal PCR primers. Twelve crenarchaeotal sequences were identified, and the phylogenetic relationships between these sequences and previously described crenarchaeotal 16S rDNA sequences were determined. Phylogenetic analyses included nonthermophilic crenarchaeotal sequences found in public databases and revealed that the nonthermophilic Crenarchaeota group is composed of at least four distinct phylogenetic clusters. A 16S rRNA-targeted oligonucleotide probe specific for all known nonthermophilic crenarchaeotal sequences was designed and used to determine their abundance in soil samples. The nonthermophilic Crenarchaeota accounted for as much as 1.42% ± 0.42% of the 16S rRNA in the soils analyzed.
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