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PM<inf>2.5</inf> drives bacterial functions for carbon, nitrogen, and sulfur cycles in the atmosphere
- Journal Article
Airborne bacteria may absorb the substance from the atmospheric particles and play a role in biogeochemical cycling. However, these studies focused on a few culturable bacteria and the samples were usually collected from one site. The metabolic potential of a majority of airborne bacteria on a regional scale and their driving factors remain unknown. In this study, we collected particulates with aerodynamic diameter ≤2.5 μm (PM2.5) from 8 cities that represent different regions across China and analyzed the samples via high-throughput sequencing of 16S rRNA genes, quantitative polymerase chain reaction (qPCR) analysis, and functional database prediction. Based on the FAPROTAX database, 326 (80.69%), 191 (47.28%) and 45 (11.14%) bacterial genera are possible to conduct the pathways of carbon, nitrogen, and sulfur cycles, respectively. The pathway analysis indicated that airborne bacteria may lead to the decrease in organic carbon while the increase in ammonium and sulfate in PM2.5 samples, all of which are the important components of PM2.5. Among the 19 environmental factors studied including air pollutants, meteorological factors, and geographical conditions, PM2.5 concentration manifested the strongest correlations with the functional genes for the transformation of ammonium and sulfate. Moreover, the PM2.5 concentration rather than the sampling site will drive the distribution of functional genera. Thus, a bi-directional relationship between PM2.5 and bacterial metabolism is suggested. Our findings shed light on the potential bacterial pathway for the biogeochemical cycling in the atmosphere and the important role of PM2.5, offering a new perspective for atmospheric ecology and pollution control. Show more
Journal / seriesEnvironmental Pollution
Organisational unit03887 - Wang, Jing / Wang, Jing
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