This article is part of the supplement: Eleventh International Conference on Bioinformatics (InCoB2012): Computational Biology

Open Access Proceedings

Metagenomic profiles of free-living archaea, bacteria and small eukaryotes in coastal areas of Sichang island, Thailand

Naraporn Somboonna1*, Anunchai Assawamakin2, Alisa Wilantho2, Sithichoke Tangphatsornruang2 and Sissades Tongsima2

Author Affiliations

1 Department of Microbiology, Faculty of Science, Chulalongkorn University, Bangkok 10330, Thailand

2 Genome Institute, National Center for Genetic Engineering and Biotechnology, Klong 1, Klong Luang, Pathum thani 12120, Thailand

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BMC Genomics 2012, 13(Suppl 7):S29  doi:10.1186/1471-2164-13-S7-S29

Published: 13 December 2012



Tha Wang and Tham Phang coasts, though situated at similar oceanographic positions on Sichang island, Chonburi province, Thailand, are different in bay geography and amount of municipal disturbances. These affect the marine ecosystems. The study used metagenomics combined with 16S and 18S rDNA pyrosequencing to identify types and distributions of archaea, bacteria, fungi and small eukaryotes of sizes ranges 0.45 and ~30 μm.


Following the open bay geography and minimal municipal sewages, Tham Phang coast showed the cleaner water properties, described by color, salinity, pH, conductivity and percent dissolved oxygen. The 16S and 18S rDNA metagenomic profiles for Tha Wang and Tham Phang coasts revealed many differences, highlighting by low Lennon and Yue & Clayton theta similarity indices (66.03-73.03% for 16S rDNA profiles, 2.85-25.38% for 18S rDNA profiles). For 16S rDNA, the percent compositions of species belonging to Proteobacteria, Bacteroidetes, Cyanobacteria, Firmicutes, Verrucomicrobia, Gammatimonadetes, Tenericutes, Acidobacteria, Spirochaetes, Chlamydiae, Euryarchaeota, Nitrospirae, Planctomycetes, Thermotogae and Aquificae were higher or distinctly present in Tha Wang. In Tham Phang, except Actinobacteria, the fewer number of prokaryotic species existed. For 18S rDNA, fungi represented 74.745% of the species in Tha Wang, whereas only 6.728% in Tham Phang. Basidiomycota (71.157%) and Ascomycota (3.060%) were the major phyla in Tha Wang. Indeed, Tha Wang-to-Tham Phang percent composition ratios for fungi Basidiomycota and Chytridiomycota were 1264.701 and 25.422, respectively. In Tham Phang, Brachiopoda (lamp shells) and Mollusca (snails) accounted for 80.380% of the 18S rDNA species detected, and their proportions were approximately tenfold greater than those in Tha Wang. Overall, coastal Tham Phang comprised abundant animal species.


Tha Wang contained numerous archaea, bacteria and fungi, many of which could synthesize useful biotechnology gas and enzymes that could also function in high-saline and high-temperature conditions. Tham Phang contained less abundant archaea, bacteria and fungi, and the majority of the extracted metagenomes belonged to animal kingdom. Many microorganisms in Tham Phang were essential for nutrient-recycling and pharmaceuticals, for instances, Streptomyces, Pennicilium and Saccharomyces. Together, the study provided metagenomic profiles of free-living prokaryotes and eukaryotes in coastal areas of Sichang island.