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Changes in microbial communities during seawater pre-treatment within a desalination plant
Balzano, S.; Jamieson, T.; Leterme, S. (2021). Changes in microbial communities during seawater pre-treatment within a desalination plant. Aquat. Microb. Ecol. 86: 63-68.
In: Aquatic Microbial Ecology. Inter-Research: Oldendorf/Luhe. ISSN 0948-3055; e-ISSN 1616-1564, meer
Peer reviewed article  

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Author keywords
    16S rDNA; 18S rDNA ; Ammonium oxidation; Desalination

Auteurs  Top 
  • Balzano, S., meer
  • Jamieson, T.
  • Leterme, S.


    We analysed prokaryotic and eukaryotic communities across the seawater pre-treatment system of Penneshaw (Kangaroo Island, South Australia) desalination plant, using 16S and 18S rRNA gene sequencing. The richness of operational taxonomic units increased downstream of the pre-treatmentsystem (reverse osmosis feedwater) compared to raw seawater for Archaea, while it decreased for bacteria and protists. Overall, the reverse osmosis feedwater was found to be enriched in ammonia-oxidising bacteria and Archaea compared to raw seawater, and also contained greater proportions of taxa typically observed in aquatic biofilms and/or within other water treatment systems. Although the microbial load was reduced by the pre-treatment system, the increase in proportion of biofilm-associated microbes suggests the presence of active microbial communities within multimedia filters and other parts of the pre-treatment system that might increase biofouling risks.

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