Enzymatic manganese(II) oxidation by metabolically dormant spores of diverse Bacillus species

Chris A. Francist, Bradley Tebo

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

137 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Bacterial spores are renowned for their longevity, ubiquity, and resistance to environmental insults, but virtually nothing is known regarding whether these metabolically dormant structures impact their surrounding chemical environments. In the present study, a number of spore-forming bacteria that produce dormant spores which enzymatically oxidize soluble Mn(II) to insoluble Mn(IV) oxides were isolated from coastal marine sediments. The highly charged and reactive surfaces of biogenic metal oxides dramatically influence the oxidation and sorption of both trace metals and organics in the environment. Prior to this study, the only known Mn(II)-oxidizing sporeformer was the marine Bacillus sp. strain SG-1, an extensively studied bacterium in which Mn(II) oxidation is believed to be catalyzed by a multicopper oxidase, MnxG. Phylogenetic analysis based on 16S rRNA and mnxG sequences obtained from 15 different Mn(II)-oxidizing sporeformers (including SG-1) revealed extensive diversity within the genus Bacillus, with organisms falling into several distinct clusters and lineages. In addition, active Mn(II)-oxidizing proteins of various sizes, as observed in sodium dodecyl sulfate-polyacrylamide electrophoresis gels, were recovered from the outer layers of purified dormant spores of the isolates. These are the first active Mn (II)-oxidizing enzymes identified in spores or gram-positive bacteria. Although extremely resistant to denaturation, the activities of these enzymes were inhibited by azide and o-phenanthroline, consistent with the involvement of multicopper oxidases. Overall, these studies suggest that the commonly held view that bacterial spores are merely inactive structures in the environment should be revised.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)874-880
Number of pages7
JournalApplied and Environmental Microbiology
Volume68
Issue number2
DOIs
StatePublished - 2002
Externally publishedYes

Fingerprint

Bacillus (bacteria)
Manganese
Spores
Bacillus
manganese
bacterial spores
spore
spores
Bacterial Spores
oxidation
oxides
Oxides
spore-forming bacteria
azides
Oxidoreductases
Metals
marine sediments
Gram-positive bacteria
Geologic Sediments
Bacteria

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Environmental Science(all)
  • Biotechnology
  • Microbiology

Cite this

Enzymatic manganese(II) oxidation by metabolically dormant spores of diverse Bacillus species. / Francist, Chris A.; Tebo, Bradley.

In: Applied and Environmental Microbiology, Vol. 68, No. 2, 2002, p. 874-880.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

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