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Prokaryotic Diversity and Composition Within Equatorial Lakes Olbolosat and Oloiden in Kenya, Africa

Highlights •Equatorial lakes Olbolosat and Oloiden are rich in prokaryotic diversity.

•Prokaryotic diversity differ across samples between the two lakes

•Environmental factors shape the prokaryotic community structures

•Alpha Proteobacteria are the most abundant taxa in both lakes Olbolosat and Oloiden

ABSTRACT Total community 16S rDNA was used to determine the diversity and composition of bacteria and archaea within lakes Olbolosat and Oloiden in Kenya. The V3-V4 hypervariable region of the 16S rRNA gene was targeted since it's highly conserved and has a higher resolution for lower rank taxa. High throughput sequencing was performed on 15 samples obtained from the two lakes using the Illumina Miseq platform. Lakes Olbolosat and Oloiden shared 280 of 10,523 Amplicon Sequence Variants (ASVs) recovered while the four sample types (water, microbial mats, dry and wet sediments) shared 4 ASVs. The composition of ASVs in lake Olbolosat was highly dependent on Cu+, Fe2+, NH4+, and Mn2+, while L. Oloiden was dependent on Mg2+, Na+, Ca2+, and K+. All the alpha diversity indices except Simpson were highest in the dry sediment sample (EC1 and 2) both from lake Oloiden. The abundant phyla included Proteobacteria (33.8%), Firmicutes (27.3%), Actinobacteriota (21.2%), Chloroflexi (6.8%), Cyanobacteria (3.8%), Acidobacteriota (2.8%), Planctomycetota (1.9%) and Bacteroidota (1.1%). Analysis of similarity (ANOSIM) revealed a significant difference in ASV composition between the two lakes (r = 0.191, p = 0.048), and between the sample types (r = 0.6667, p = 0.001). The interaction network for prokaryotic communities within the two lakes displayed Proteobacteria to be highly positively connected with other microbes. PERMANOVA results suggest that temperature controls the functioning of the two ecosystems.

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