Lipid Biomarker and Isotopic Study of Community Distribution and Biomarker Preservation in a Laminated Microbial Mat from Shark Bay, Western Australia

Anais Pagès, Kliti Grice, David T. Welsh, Peter T. Teasdale, Martin Van Kranendonk, Paul Greenwood

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

13 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Modern microbial mats from Shark Bay present some structural similarities with ancient stromatolites; thus, the functionality of microbial communities and processes of diagenetic preservation of modern mats may provide an insight into ancient microbial assemblages and preservation. In this study, the vertical distribution of microbial communities was investigated in a well-laminated smooth mat from Shark Bay. Biolipid and compound-specific isotopic analyses were performed to investigate the distribution of microbial communities in four distinct layers of the mat. Biomarkers indicative of cyanobacteria were more abundant in the uppermost oxic layer. Diatom markers (e.g. C25 HBI alkene, C20:4ω6 and C20:5ω3 polar lipid fatty acids (PLFAs)) were also detected in high abundance in the uppermost layer, but also in the deepest layer under conditions of permanent darkness and anoxia, where they probably used NO3 for respiration. CycC19:0, an abundant PLFA of purple sulfur bacteria (PSB), was detected in all layers and presented the most 13C-depleted values of all PLFAs, consistent with photoautotrophic PSB. Sulfur-bound aliphatic and aromatic biomarkers were detected in all layers, highlighting the occurrence of early sulfurisation which may be an important mechanism in the sedimentary preservation of functional biolipids in living and, thus, also ancient mats.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)459-472
Number of pages14
JournalMicrobial Ecology
Volume70
Issue number2
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Aug 21 2015
Externally publishedYes

Fingerprint

microbial mat
shark
sharks
Chromatiaceae
Western Australia
microbial communities
biomarker
biomarkers
lipid
fatty acids
lipids
microbial community
alkenes
fatty acid
Bacillariophyceae
sulfur
breathing
aromatic compounds
hypoxia
Cyanobacteria

Keywords

  • Cyanobacteria
  • Lipid biomarkers
  • Microbial mats
  • Stable isotopes
  • Sulfate-reducing bacteria

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Ecology, Evolution, Behavior and Systematics
  • Ecology
  • Soil Science

Cite this

Lipid Biomarker and Isotopic Study of Community Distribution and Biomarker Preservation in a Laminated Microbial Mat from Shark Bay, Western Australia. / Pagès, Anais; Grice, Kliti; Welsh, David T.; Teasdale, Peter T.; Van Kranendonk, Martin; Greenwood, Paul.

In: Microbial Ecology, Vol. 70, No. 2, 21.08.2015, p. 459-472.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Pagès, Anais ; Grice, Kliti ; Welsh, David T. ; Teasdale, Peter T. ; Van Kranendonk, Martin ; Greenwood, Paul. / Lipid Biomarker and Isotopic Study of Community Distribution and Biomarker Preservation in a Laminated Microbial Mat from Shark Bay, Western Australia. In: Microbial Ecology. 2015 ; Vol. 70, No. 2. pp. 459-472.
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