The composting process is carried out under aerobic conditions involving bacteria, archaea, and fungi. Little is known about the diversity of archaeal community in compost, although they may play an important role in methane production and ammonia oxidation. In the present study, archaeal community dynamics during cattle manure composting were analyzed using a clone library of the archaeal 16S rRNA gene. The results indicated that methane-producing archaea (methanogen) and ammonia-oxidizing archaea (AOA) may be the dominant microbes throughout the composting. The community consisted primarily of Methanocorpusculum-like and Methanosarcina-like sequences until day 2, while the number of Candidatus Nitrososphaera-like sequences increased from day 6 to day 30. Methanosarcina thermophila-like sequences were dominant from day 2, suggesting that M. thermophila-like species can adapt to increasing temperature or nutrient loss. A denaturant gradient gel electrophoresis analysis of the archaeal amoA genes revealed that the dominant amoA gene sequence with 99% homology to that of Candidatus Nitrososphaera gargensis was identical to those obtained from a different composting facility. These data suggested that AOA may play a role in ammonia oxidation in several composting practices. Our results provide fundamental information regarding archaeal community dynamics that will help in understanding the collective microbial community in compost.
- 16S rRNA gene
- Ammonia-oxidizing archaea
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Applied Microbiology and Biotechnology