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Spore-forming bacteria as an indicator of pollution in sediments of Lake Geneva

Author Matthieu BUECHE
Director of thesis Pilar Junier
Co-director of thesis
Summary of thesis

Bacterial spores are highly specialized cellular forms that allow certain bacterial groups to tolerate harsh environmental conditions while conserving intact their genetic information. Recently, spore-forming bacteria have been detected as dominant members of the microbial communities in polluted environments. There is emerging evidence for the ability of some spore-forming microorganisms to reduce a variety of metals and/or anthropogenic contaminants, supporting the idea that spore-formers contribute to the metabolism of pollutants. Particularly in the case of lake sediments, one of the major sinks of anthropogenic pollution, the effect of pollutants over the prevalence of spore-forming bacteria is unknown. The aim of this study is to investigate the correlation between the frequency and diversity of spore-forming bacteria and the deposition of pollutants. In addition to this, the effect of certain selected pollutants on sporulation in model species will be assessed in the laboratory in order to gain an additional causal link between pollution and sporulation in natural environments.

Administrative delay for the defence