Detection of sulfide producing bacteria is typically focused on sulfate reducing bacteria (SRB). However, current molecular screening methods may miss some sulfide producers present in produced water. Many of the common sulfate-reducing bacteria use the dissimilatory sulfite reductase (DSR) enzyme to produce sulfide but other sulfide-producing bacteria do not have DSR. Halanaerobium are thiosulfate reducing bacteria (TRB) that do not have DSR but which do produce sulfide, a corrosive product that is also a health risk to personnel. Halanaerobium are often isolated from oil and gas facilities, and research has shown their dominance and perseverance in produced fluids from high salt and high temperature environments. Monitoring TRB in addition to SRB is essential in evaluating mitigation strategies that seek to prevent damage from the biotic production of sulfide . However, molecular detection methods used for SRB will not detect many of the TRBs. To detect thiosulfate reducing Halanaerobium a novel gene target is needed. Our research has identified the pathway used for thiosulfate reduction in Halanaerobium and a gene target for molecular detection.

Primary Author/Conference Presenter:
Vince Sandifer
Graduate Research Assistant
University of Oklahoma
Department of Microbiology and Plant Biology
Norman, Oklahoma

Kathleen Duncan, University of Oklahoma Department of Microbiology and Plant Biology