Diverse Microbial Communities Grow in Biofilms

Lin H, Zhang S, Zhang S, Lin W, Yu X. The function of advanced treatment process in a drinking water treatment plant with organic matter-polluted source water. Environmental Science and Pollution Research International 2015 Aug 7.

To understand the relationship between chemical and microbial treatment at each treatment step, as well as the relationship between microbial community structure in biofilms in biofilters and their ecological functions, a drinking water plant with severe organic matter-polluted source water was investigated. The bacterial community dynamics of two drinking water supply systems (traditional and advanced treatment processes) in this plant were studied from the source to the product water. Analysis by 454 pyrosequencing was conducted to characterize the bacterial diversity in each step of the treatment processes. The bacterial communities in these two treatment processes were highly diverse. Proteobacteria, which mainly consisted of beta-proteobacteria, was the dominant phylum. The two treatment processes used in the plant could effectively remove organic pollutants and microbial polution, especially the advanced treatment process. Significant differences in the detection of the major groups were observed in the product water samples in the treatment processes. The treatment processes, particularly the biological pretreatment and O3-biological activated carbon in the advanced treatment process, highly influenced the microbial community composition and the water quality. Some opportunistic pathogens were found in the water. Nitrogen-relative microorganisms found in the biofilm of filters may perform an important function on the microbial community composition and water quality improvement.

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