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An artificial neural network and Random Forest identify glyphosate-impacted brackish communities based on 16S rRNA amplicon MiSeq read counts

: Janßen, René; Zabel, Jakob; Lukas, Uwe von; Labrenz, Matthias


Marine pollution bulletin 149 (2019), Art. 110530, 11 pp.
ISSN: 0025-326X
ISSN: 1879-3363
Journal Article
Fraunhofer IGD, Institutsteil Rostock ()
Fraunhofer IGD ()
Artificial Neural Networks; machine learning; marine applications; Lead Topic: Digitized Work; Research Line: Computer vision (CV)

Machine learning algorithms can be trained on complex data sets to detect, predict, or model specific aspects. Aim of this study was to train an artificial neural network in comparison to a Random Forest model to detect induced changes in microbial communities, in order to support environmental monitoring efforts of contamination events. Models were trained on taxon count tables obtained via next-generation amplicon sequencing of water column samples originating from a lab microcosm incubation experiment conducted over 140 days to determine the effects of glyphosate on succession within brackish-water microbial communities. Glyphosate-treated assemblages were classified correctly; a subsetting approach identified the taxa primarily responsible for this, permitting the reduction of input features. This study demonstrates the potential of artificial neural networks to predict indicator species for glyphosate contamination. The results could empower the development of environmental monitoring strategies with applications limited to neither glyphosate nor amplicon sequence data.