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Influence of the composition of the cellulolytic flora on the development of hydrogenotrophic microorganisms, hydrogen utilization, and methane production in the rumens of gnotobiotically reared lambs

Abstract : We investigated the influence of the composition of the fibrolytic microbial community on the development and activities of hydrogen-utilizing microorganisms in the rumens of gnotobiotically reared lambs. Two groups of lambs were reared. The first group was inoculated with Fibrobacter succinogenes, a non-H(2)-producing species, as the main cellulolytic organism, and the second group was inoculated with Ruminococcus albus, Ruminococcus flavefaciens, and anaerobic fungi that produce hydrogen. The development of hydrogenotrophic bacterial communities, i.e., acetogens, fumarate and sulfate reducers, was monitored in the absence of methanogens and after inoculation of methanogens. Hydrogen production and utilization and methane production were measured in rumen content samples incubated in vitro in the presence of exogenous hydrogen (supplemented with fumarate or not supplemented with fumarate) or in the presence of ground alfalfa hay as a degradable substrate. Our results show that methane production was clearly reduced when the dominant fibrolytic species was a non-H(2)-producing species, such as Fibrobacter succinogenes, without significantly impairing fiber degradation and fermentations in the rumen. The addition of fumarate to the rumen contents stimulated H(2) utilization only by the ruminal microbiota inoculated with F. succinogenes, suggesting that these communities could play an important role in fumarate reduction in vivo.
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Frédérique Chaucheyras-Durand, Sébastien Masséglia, Gérard Fonty, Evelyne Forano. Influence of the composition of the cellulolytic flora on the development of hydrogenotrophic microorganisms, hydrogen utilization, and methane production in the rumens of gnotobiotically reared lambs. Applied and Environmental Microbiology, American Society for Microbiology, 2010, 76 (24), pp.7931-7937. ⟨10.1128/AEM.01784-10⟩. ⟨hal-02658789⟩

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