Application of Omics Technologies for Microbial Community Structure and Function Analysis in Contaminated Environment
Vineet Kumar1,2, Kshitij Singh2, Maulin P. Shah3, Ajay Kumar Singh2, Adarsh Kumar2, Yogesh Kumar4
Environmental Microbiology and Biotechnology Laboratory, School of Environmental Sciences, Jawaharlal Nehru University, New Delhi, India.
Environmental contamination (soil, water, and air) due to rampant industrialization, anthropogenic activities is a pertinacious problem and continues to be a burden to human and animal health in some parts of the world. Microbial communities are complex biological assemblies and play an integral and often unique role in ecosystem functions, whose study has been difficult for a long time because a large fraction of the species is unknown. Understanding the structure and composition of complex microbial communities and their responses to environmental perturbations, such as toxic contamination, climate change, and land-use changes, is critical for prediction, maintenance, and restoration of desirable ecosystem functions. Effective 16S rRNA genes based unbiased high-throughput “omics” approaches including metagenomics, metatranscriptomics, metaproteomics, metabolomics, interactomics, and fluxomics have been developed and applied for analyzing detailed knowledge of microbial community structure and function and quantitative measurements of various biological molecules in a high-throughput manner, thus allowing a better determination of their variation between different biological states on a genomic scale. In the present chapter, we discussed numerous advanced omics approaches that help to comprehend and explore the structural and functional aspects of the microbial communities in response to different environmental pollutants and presented some success stories by using these approaches.
Keywords: Fluxomicsnext-generation sequencing, ecorestoration, interactomics, metabolomics.