Anaerobic degradation of aromatic compounds coupled to Fe(III) reduction by Ferroglobus placidus

J M Tor, D R Lovley
Environmental Microbiology 2001, 3 (4): 281-7
Aromatic compounds are an important component of the organic matter in some of the anaerobic environments that hyperthermophilic microorganisms inhabit, but the potential for hyperthermophilic microorganisms to metabolize aromatic compounds has not been described previously. In this study, aromatic metabolism was investigated in the hyperthermophile Ferroglobus placidus. F. placidus grew at 85 degrees C in anaerobic medium with a variety of aromatic compounds as the sole electron donor and poorly crystalline Fe(III) oxide as the electron acceptor. Growth coincided with Fe(III) reduction. Aromatic compounds supporting growth included benzoate, phenol, 4-hydroxybenzoate, benzaldehyde, p-hydroxybenzaldehyde and t-cinnamic acid (3-phenyl-2-propenoic acid). These aromatic compounds did not support growth when nitrate was provided as the electron acceptor, even though nitrate supports the growth of this organism with Fe(II) or H2 as the electron donor. The stoichiometry of benzoate and phenol uptake and Fe(III) reduction indicated that F. placidus completely oxidized these aromatic compounds to carbon dioxide, with Fe(III) serving as the sole electron acceptor. This is the first example of an Archaea that can anaerobically oxidize an aromatic compound. These results also demonstrate for the first time that hyperthermophilic microorganisms can anaerobically oxidize aromatic compounds and suggest that hyperthermophiles may metabolize aromatic compounds in hot environments such as the deep hot subsurface and in marine and terrestrial hydrothermal zones in which Fe(III) is available as an electron acceptor.

Full Text Links

Find Full Text Links for this Article


You are not logged in. Sign Up or Log In to join the discussion.

Trending Papers

Remove bar
Read by QxMD icon Read

Save your favorite articles in one place with a free QxMD account.


Search Tips

Use Boolean operators: AND/OR

diabetic AND foot
diabetes OR diabetic

Exclude a word using the 'minus' sign

Virchow -triad

Use Parentheses

water AND (cup OR glass)

Add an asterisk (*) at end of a word to include word stems

Neuro* will search for Neurology, Neuroscientist, Neurological, and so on

Use quotes to search for an exact phrase

"primary prevention of cancer"
(heart or cardiac or cardio*) AND arrest -"American Heart Association"