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The purpose of this research was to evaluate the use of fatty acid methyl ester (FAME) analysis for the examination of microbial community structure in various anaerobic environments. Three reactors were examined under a wide range of operating conditions. Granule samples were taken from an anaerobic sequencing batch reactor (ASBR) and a static granular bed reactor (SGBR) treating pork slaughterhouse wastewater operated under identical conditions. The results from these two reactors were compared with FAME analysis of another SGBR treating synthetic wastewater containing non-fat dry milk. Using FAME, fatty acids were extracted and a profile or “fingerprint” of the community structure was created. Profiles of the different reactors were compared, and the community differences among the reactors were evaluated. FAME profiles indicated that the microorganism structure did not change significantly as a function of the hydraulic retention time (HRT). Significant variations were observed, however, for the different reactor configurations and influent wastewater compositions.
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Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: 2002-01-01

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