EGU General Assembly 2021
© Author(s) 2021. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.

Mobilization of bacteriophages from soil matrix to soil water in the Attert River basin: A case study

Perrine Florent1,2, Henry-Michel Cauchie1, and Leslie Ogorzaly1
Perrine Florent et al.
  • 1Luxembourg Institute of sciences and technology (LIST), Belvaux, Luxembourg
  • 2University of Luxembourg (FSTC-DSSE), Esch-sur-Alzette, Luxembourg

Bacteriophages are numerous, tremendously diverse and ubiquitous in the environment. Since the 1960s, bacteriophages have been proposed as new tracers to investigate the hydrological processes in addition to conventional tracers (i.e. isotopes, salts, dyes). Their dynamic into water (i.e. surface water, groundwater) have been well studied. However, the soil compartment known for its important microbial activity, have been few characterized in terms of bacteriophage diversity. Hence, in the present study, the objective is to investigate the transport of soil viral population from the soil matrix to the soil water compartment. This mobilization from the soil matrix is mainly driven by the adsorption/desorption mechanisms to which bacteriophages are subjected. Therefore, in order to understand the dynamics of the bacteriophage population, both soil and soil water were sampled from the Weierbach forest, located in the Attert River basin (Grand-Duchy of Luxembourg) at the topsoil level (i.e. 0-20 cm) over a period of one month. Due to a lower abundance of the microbial population in soil water, an enrichment method was carried out to increase the concentration. Subsequently, a shotgun metagenomics analysis was performed on the soil and soil water samples to obtain the DNA sequences, which were then sorted using bioinformatics and statistical analyses, allowing ultimately the identification of the viral populations. The moving of the bacteriophage populations from the soil to the soil water provides information on their transport capacity, in particular by taking into account environmental conditions such as air and soil temperatures, precipitation, soil humidity, soil pH, etc.  


Key words: bacteriophages, soil, water, transport, environmental conditions

How to cite: Florent, P., Cauchie, H.-M., and Ogorzaly, L.: Mobilization of bacteriophages from soil matrix to soil water in the Attert River basin: A case study, EGU General Assembly 2021, online, 19–30 Apr 2021, EGU21-12113,, 2021.


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