Analysis of archaeal communities in full-scale anaerobic digesters using 454 pyrosequencing

Hyunjin Kang, Taek Seung Kim, Young Haeng Lee, Taekjune Lee, Keumsuk Han, Youngjun Choi, Hee Deung Park

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Archaeal communities were investigated using 454 pyrosequencing technology based on 16S rRNA gene in 11 samples collected from six different full-scale anaerobic digesters. Observed operational taxonomic units (OTUs) estimated from the archaeal 16S rRNA gene sequences were 13-55 OTUs (3% cutoff) which was corresponded to 29-89% of Chao1 richness estimates. In the anaerobic digesters there were archaeal sequences within the orders Thermoproteales, Thermoplasmatales, Desulfurococcales as well as within the orders Methanomicrobiales, Methanobacteriales, Methanococcales, Methanosarcinales, and Methanocellales, which are known to produce methane. Among these orders, Methanococcales known to produce methane using hydrogen was the predominant taxon and constituted 51.8-99.7% of total sequences. All samples showed a very similar community structure (Pearson correlation coefficient=0.99) except for one sample based on a heat map analysis. In addition, canonical correspondence analysis correlating archaeal communities to the environmental variables demonstrated that digester temperature and total solids removal rate were the two important explanatory variables. Overall results suggested that environmental and operational variables of anaerobic digester are important factors determining archaeal diversity and community structure.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)209-217
Number of pages9
JournalKorean Journal of Microbiology
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 2011


  • Anaerobic digestion
  • Archaea
  • Methanococcales
  • Methanogenesis
  • Pyrosequencing

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Microbiology


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