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Archives of Microbiology

, Volume 160, Issue 1, pp 35–42 | Cite as

Copper association with iron sulfide magnetosomes in a magnetotactic bacterium

  • Dennis A. Bazylinski
  • Anthony J. Garratt-Reed
  • Afshin Abedi
  • Richard B. Frankel
Original Papers
  • 134 Downloads

Abstract

Greigite (Fe3S4) and pyrite (FeS2) particles in the magnetosomes of a many-celled, magnetotactic prokaryote (MMP), common in brackish-to-marine, sulfidic, aquatic habitats, contained relatively high concentrations of copper which ranged from about 0.1 to 10 atomic per cent relative to iron. In contrast, the greigite particles in the magnetosomes of a curved magnetotactic bacterium collected from the same sampling site did not contain significant levels of copper. The ability of the MMP to biomineralize copper within its magnetosomes appeared to be limited to that organism and dependent upon the site from which it was collected. Although the chemical mechanism and physiological function of copper accumulation in the magnetosomes of the MMP is unclear, the presence of copper is the first evidence that another transition metal ion could be incorporated in the mineral phase of the magnetosomes of a magnetotactic bacterium.

Key words

Biomineralization Copper concentration Greigite Iron sulfide Magnetite Magnetosome Magnetotactic bacterium Pyrite Single magneticdomain 

Abbreviation

MMP

many-celled magnetotactic prokaryote

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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 1993

Authors and Affiliations

  • Dennis A. Bazylinski
    • 1
  • Anthony J. Garratt-Reed
    • 2
  • Afshin Abedi
    • 3
  • Richard B. Frankel
    • 3
  1. 1.Department of Anaerobic MicrobiologyVirginia Polytechnic Institute and State UniversityBlacksburgUSA
  2. 2.Center for Materials ResearchMassachusetts Institute of TechnologyCambridgeUSA
  3. 3.Department of PhysicsCalifornia Polytechnic State UniversitySan Luis ObispoUSA

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