The use of genetic probes to detect microorganisms in biomining operations

James R. Yates, John H. Lobos, David S. Holmes

Resultado de la investigación: Contribución a una revistaArtículo

11 Citas (Scopus)

Resumen

Microorganisms are currently used for the recovery of copper from mining dumps of low-grade ore. One of the most important microorganisms involved in copper-solubilization is Thiobacillus ferrooxidans, although many other microbial genera are also thought to be implicated. A mining dump poses some special problems for the industrial microbiologist because it represents a non-sterile and heterogeneous substrate. Consequently, to enhance our knowledge of the role of microorganisms in metal recovery we must identify the indigenous microorganisms and understand their respective contributions to the process. In addition, when a superior strain of microorganism is developed in the laboratory, by genetic engineering or by other means, we must have a method to evaluate the maintenance of such a strain in the mining dump. In this paper, we describe DNA homology studies, using dot blot and Southern blot analysis of hybridizations of both whole genomic DNA and cloned DNA sequences, to identify and enumerate several bioleaching microorganisms. We demonstrate that it is possible to identify different species of microorganisms and, in one case, to discriminate between different strains of a single species. It is also possible to identify and quantitate certain species in a mixed culture. DNA hybridization analysis has several advantages over the more conventional bacteriological methods of identification, especially in a complex bioleaching situation.

Idioma originalInglés
Páginas (desde-hasta)129-135
Número de páginas7
PublicaciónJournal of Industrial Microbiology
Volumen1
N.º2
DOI
EstadoPublicada - jun 1986

Áreas temáticas de ASJC Scopus

  • Microbiología y biotecnología aplicadas

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