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Bacteriohopanepolyols in tropical soils and sediments from the Congo River catchment area

Spencer-Jones, C.L.; Wagner, T.; Dinga, B.J.; Schefuß, E.; Mann, P.J.; Poulsen, J.R.; Spencer, R.G.M.; Wabakanghanzi, J.N.; Talbot, H.M.


T. Wagner

B.J. Dinga

E. Schefuß

P.J. Mann

J.R. Poulsen

R.G.M. Spencer

J.N. Wabakanghanzi

H.M. Talbot


The Congo River basin drains the second largest area of tropical rainforest in the world, including a large proportion of pristine wetlands. We present the bacteriohopanepolyol (BHP) inventory of a suite of tropical soils and, from comparison with published data, propose some initial ideas on BHP distribution controls. Strong taxonomic controls on BHP production are evident in wetland sediments. Dominant within the suite were 35-aminobacteriohopane-31,32,33,34-tetrol (aminotetrol) and 35-aminobacteriohopane-30,31,32,33,34-pentol (aminopentol), indicating aerobic methanotrophy. A narrow range and low mean relative abundance of 30-(5′-adenosyl)hopane (adenosylhopane) and related compounds, collectively termed “soil marker” BHPs, were observed in Congo soils (mean 17%, range 7.9–36% of total BHPs, n = 22) compared with literature data from temperate surface soils and Arctic surface soils (mean 36%, range 0–66% of total BHPs, n = 28) suggesting a greater rate of conversion of these BHP precursors to other structures.


Spencer-Jones, C., Wagner, T., Dinga, B., Schefuß, E., Mann, P., Poulsen, J., …Talbot, H. (2015). Bacteriohopanepolyols in tropical soils and sediments from the Congo River catchment area. Organic Geochemistry, 89-90, 1-13.

Journal Article Type Article
Acceptance Date Sep 10, 2015
Online Publication Date Sep 21, 2015
Publication Date 2015-12
Deposit Date Jul 21, 2016
Journal Organic Geochemistry
Print ISSN 0146-6380
Publisher Elsevier
Peer Reviewed Peer Reviewed
Volume 89-90
Pages 1-13