SREL Reprint #1945





Genetic Structure of a Lotic Population of Burkholderia (Pseudmonas) cepacia

Department of Microbiology, University of Georgia, Athens, Georgia 30602-2605,
1 and
Savannah River Ecology Laboratory, Aiken, South Carolina 29802

The genetic structure of a population of Burkholderia (Pseudomonas) cepacia isolated from a southeastern blackwater stream was investigated by using multilocus enzyme electrophoresis to examine the alielic variation in eight structural gene loci. Overall, 213 isolates were collected at transect points along the stream continuum, from both the sediments along the bank and the water column. Multilocus enzyme electrophoresis analysis revealed 164 distinct electrophoretic types, and the mean genetic diversity of the entire population was 0.574. Genetic diversity values did not vary spatially along the stream continuum. From a canonical discriminant analysis, Mahalonobis distances (measurements of genetic similarity between populations) revealed significant differences among the subpopulations at the sediment sampling points, suggesting bacterial adaptation to a heterogeneous (or patchy) microgeographical environment. Multilocus linkage disequilibrium analysis of the isolates revealed only limited association between alleles, suggesting frequent recombination, relative to binary fission, in this population. Furthermore, the dendrogram created from the data of this study and the allele mismatch distribution are typical of a population characterized by extensive genetic mixing. We suggest that B. cepacia be added to the growing list of bacteria that are not obligatorily clonal.

SREL Reprint #1945

Wise, M., L.J. Shimkets, and J.V. McArthur. 1995. Genetic structure of a lotic population of Burkholderia (Psuedomonas) cepacia. Applied and Environmental Microbiology 61:1791-1798.

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