FUNGAL DIVERSITY IN EUKARYOTE-DOMINATED BIOFILMS IN ACID MINE DRAINAGE
Preliminary microscopic investigations of the biofilms show no evidence of fungal hyphae, but fungi were isolated from the biofilms and from acid mine drainage samples using culturing techniques. Three growth media were used, resulting in isolation of different fungal taxa. Penicillium sp., Mucor sp., and yeasts were isolated on malt extract agar and chitin agar (near-neutral pH). Yeasts and a different species of Penicillium were isolated on a modified 9K medium (pH 3.0). Identification of seasonal trends in fungal species will continue through the summer of 2004. Future studies will focus on establishing possible synergistic relationships between fungi and other biofilm microbes, as well as evaluating the role of fungi in biomineralization in AMD systems.