Wastewater treatment plants (WWTPs) are necessary to protect ecosystems quality and human health. Their function relies on the degradation of organic matter and nutrients from a water influent, prior to the effluent release into the environment. In this work we studied the bacterial community dynamics of a municipal WWTP with a membrane bioreactor through 16S rRNA gene sequencing. The main phyla identified in the wastewater were Proteobacteria, Bacteroidetes, Chloroflexi, Planctomycetes and Actinobacteria. The WWTP is located in Spain and, like other studied WWTP in temperate climate zones, the temperature played a major role in community assembly. Seasonal community succession is observed along the two years sampling period, in addition to a continual annual drift in the microbial populations. The core community of the WWTP bioreactor was also studied, where a small fraction of sequence variants constituted a large fraction of the total abundance. This core microbiome stability along the sampling period and the likewise dissimilarity patterns along the temperature gradient makes this feature a good candidate for a new process control in WWTPs.
link to the paper: https://www.nature.com/articles/s41598-020-61092-1