Metagenomic analysis of near-surface atmosphere in Singapore
Tan, Ghim Yeow
Date of Issue2017
School of Biological Sciences
Singapore Centre for Environmental Life Sciences Engineering
In this study, we conducted metagenomic analysis on DNA isolated from the near-surface air on campus grounds over ten months. We show for the first time the outdoor air microbiome of western Singapore at the species level. Eukaryota was the dominant kingdom with numerous contaminating insect reads. We discovered evidence of a core microbiome consisting of mainly fungi, some bacteria and a few higher plants. The fungi identified were mainly saprophytic species or plant pathogens. The bacteria were usually species first isolated from soil. Due to the proximity of wooded areas to the sampling site, the results suggest that the air microbiome was very endemic and influenced by short distance wind. There was weak positive correlation between the abundance of Eutypa lata and Schizophyllum commune and the amount of rainfall (p<0.001). There was weak positive correlation between temperature and bacteria diversity during the afternoon sampling (p<0.01). In general, we found little statistical significance in the correlation between the abiotic parameters measured and species diversity. Overall, our study demonstrates the effectiveness of outdoor air metagenomics using Coriolis air samplers. This foundational study of the local outdoor air microbiome will be important in guiding future experiments.
Final Year Project (FYP)
Nanyang Technological University