In soil, genetic structure modifications of indigenous bacterial community consecutively to a severe stress(mercury contamination)were delayed when the community was pre-exposed to various minor perturbations(heat, copper and atrazine). Such minor perturbations induced transitory community structure modifications leading to an increase of community stability towards a severe mercury stress. These results illustrated well the short-term pre-adaptation process for bacterial community hypothesizing that community submitted to perturbations become more resistant to withstand another stress. © 2008 Society for Applied Microbiology and Blackwell Publishing Ltd.
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