Document Detail

Bioluminescent bacteria as indicators of chemical contamination of coastal waters.
MedLine Citation:
PMID:  15998855     Owner:  NLM     Status:  MEDLINE    
The ratio of bioluminescent to total bacteria (bioluminescent ratio, BLR) as an indicator of a variety of types of anthropogenic contamination of estuarine ecosystems was evaluated through a series of laboratory and field studies. Laboratory studies indicated that the BLR of natural bacterioplankton communities was proportionally reduced in the presence of a number of contaminants including diesel fuel and saltmarsh sediments co-contaminated with mercury and polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs). Bioluminescent ratio inhibition was observed after short-term exposure to a contaminant suggesting a physiological rather than a population response of native microbial communities. Simulated eutrophication did not suppress the BLR. Field observations of the BLR were conducted weekly for a 2-yr period in the Skidaway River estuary, Georgia, USA. These observations revealed considerable seasonal variability associated with the BLR. Bioluminescent ratios were highest during the summer (25 +/- 15%), lower in the fall (6 +/- 5%) and spring (3 +/- 2%), and near zero during the winter. Although the BLR was not significantly correlated to salinity at a single site (Skidaway River estuary), the BLR was significantly correlated with salinity when sites within the same estuary system were compared (r2 = 0.93). Variation in BLR was not correlated to standard bacteriological indicators of water quality including total and fecal coliform bacteria. Comparison of the BLR from impacted and pristine estuarine sites during the fall suggested that anthropogenically impacted sites exhibited lower BLR than predicted from salinity versus BLR relationships developed in pristine systems. These observations suggest that the BLR could be used as a simple and reliable initial indicator of chemical contamination of estuarine systems resulting from human activity.
M E Frischer; J M Danforth; T F Foy; R Juraske
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Publication Detail:
Type:  Journal Article; Research Support, U.S. Gov't, Non-P.H.S.     Date:  2005-07-05
Journal Detail:
Title:  Journal of environmental quality     Volume:  34     ISSN:  0047-2425     ISO Abbreviation:  J. Environ. Qual.     Publication Date:    2005 Jul-Aug
Date Detail:
Created Date:  2005-07-06     Completed Date:  2005-11-01     Revised Date:  2006-11-15    
Medline Journal Info:
Nlm Unique ID:  0330666     Medline TA:  J Environ Qual     Country:  United States    
Other Details:
Languages:  eng     Pagination:  1328-36     Citation Subset:  IM    
Skidaway Institute of Oceanography, 10 Ocean Science Circle, Savannah, GA 31411, USA.
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MeSH Terms
Bacteria / growth & development*
Environmental Monitoring / methods*
Luminescent Measurements
Mercury / analysis*
Polychlorinated Biphenyls / analysis*
Population Dynamics
Water Microbiology
Water Pollutants / analysis*
Reg. No./Substance:
0/Polychlorinated Biphenyls; 0/Water Pollutants; 7439-97-6/Mercury

From MEDLINE®/PubMed®, a database of the U.S. National Library of Medicine

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