Enumeration of methanogens with a focus on fluorescence in situ hybridization

Sanjay Kumar, Sumit Singh Dagar, Ashok Kumar Mohanty, Sunil Kumar Sirohi, Monica Puniya, Ramesh Chander Kuhad, K. P. S. Sangu, Gareth Wyn Griffith, Anil Kumar Puniya

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

16 Citations (SciVal)


Methanogens, the members of domain Archaea are potent contributors in global warming. Being confined to the strict anaerobic environment, their direct cultivation as pure culture is quite difficult. Therefore, a range of culture-independent methods have been developed to investigate their numbers, substrate uptake patterns, and identification in complex microbial communities. Unlike other approaches, fluorescence in situ hybridization (FISH) is not only used for faster quantification and accurate identification but also to reveal the physiological properties and spatiotemporal dynamics of methanogens in their natural environment. Aside from the methodological aspects and application of FISH, this review also focuses on culture-dependent and -independent techniques employed in enumerating methanogens along with associated problems. In addition, the combination of FISH with micro-autoradiography that could also be an important tool in investigating the activities of methanogens is also discussed.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)457-472
Number of pages16
Issue number6
Early online date08 Apr 2011
Publication statusPublished - 01 Jun 2011


  • Archaea
  • Fluorescence in situ hybridization
  • Methanogens
  • Methane


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