Paraphrasing a classical definition of soil, we can define stone monuments as the place in which art and (micro)-biology encounter each other. The outdoor and indoor exposure of lithic surfaces leads, in fact, to the interaction of stone with its close environment and the consequent colonization by microorganisms, whose diversity and biodeteriorative activity is dependent on the carbon and energy sources as well as on the bioreceptivity of the substrata. , Stone monuments dating back to pre-history and more recent history have been built up and decorated using a multitude of materials, the majority of which consisted of rocky and mineral components. Although organic compounds have been also used, particularly in the case of wall paintings and frescoes, the metabolic activity of microorganisms has resulted in the biomineralization of these types of substrata. Therefore, stone monument are, in general terms, considered as built up by inorganic (both natural and artificial) materials. In this type of man-made terrestrial environment, most of the organism settlement occurs at the surface and results in the formation of more or less thick biofilms that originate from the development of air-borne cells and spores. However, microbial colonization may produce different patterns and appear as a patchy distribution of cells that accumulate in fissures, cracks or in sub-surface and deep layers depending on the porosity and state of conservation of the material as well as on the ecological requirement of individual species. Therefore, according to the distribution on or within the substratum, colonizing microorganisms can be distinguished in epilithobionts and endolithobionts respectively. Among the latter group, chasmo- (living in pre-existing cracks and fissures), crypto- (developing beneath the mineral surface layer) and eu-endolithic (actively boring the calcareous substratum) forms can be recognized. In this chapter, we will deal with the most recent methodologies that have been applied to the study of phototrophic and heterotrophic microorganisms by researchers working in the field of conservation of cultural heritage.

Studying phototrophic and heterotrophic microbial communities on stone monuments

URZI', Clara Enza
;
2001

Abstract

Paraphrasing a classical definition of soil, we can define stone monuments as the place in which art and (micro)-biology encounter each other. The outdoor and indoor exposure of lithic surfaces leads, in fact, to the interaction of stone with its close environment and the consequent colonization by microorganisms, whose diversity and biodeteriorative activity is dependent on the carbon and energy sources as well as on the bioreceptivity of the substrata. , Stone monuments dating back to pre-history and more recent history have been built up and decorated using a multitude of materials, the majority of which consisted of rocky and mineral components. Although organic compounds have been also used, particularly in the case of wall paintings and frescoes, the metabolic activity of microorganisms has resulted in the biomineralization of these types of substrata. Therefore, stone monument are, in general terms, considered as built up by inorganic (both natural and artificial) materials. In this type of man-made terrestrial environment, most of the organism settlement occurs at the surface and results in the formation of more or less thick biofilms that originate from the development of air-borne cells and spores. However, microbial colonization may produce different patterns and appear as a patchy distribution of cells that accumulate in fissures, cracks or in sub-surface and deep layers depending on the porosity and state of conservation of the material as well as on the ecological requirement of individual species. Therefore, according to the distribution on or within the substratum, colonizing microorganisms can be distinguished in epilithobionts and endolithobionts respectively. Among the latter group, chasmo- (living in pre-existing cracks and fissures), crypto- (developing beneath the mineral surface layer) and eu-endolithic (actively boring the calcareous substratum) forms can be recognized. In this chapter, we will deal with the most recent methodologies that have been applied to the study of phototrophic and heterotrophic microorganisms by researchers working in the field of conservation of cultural heritage.
9780121822378
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: http://hdl.handle.net/11570/1600106
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