Archives of Microbiology

, Volume 139, Issue 4, pp 397–401

Bacillus tusciae, a new species of thermoacidophilic, facultatively chemolithoautotrophic hydrogen oxidizing sporeformer from a geothermal area

  • Fabienne Bonjour
  • Michel Aragno
Original Papers

DOI: 10.1007/BF00408386

Cite this article as:
Bonjour, F. & Aragno, M. Arch. Microbiol. (1984) 139: 397. doi:10.1007/BF00408386


A thermophilic, chemolithoautotrophic, hydrogen-oxidizing sporeformer has been isolated from ponds in a solfatara in the geothermal area of Tuscany (Italy). Some physicochemical parameters of the habitat were determined. The habitat was characterized by the presence of molecular hydrogen in the escaping gases, a very low content of phosphate and organic matter. Temperature and water level in the ponds varied widely. The organism formed oval, subterminal spores, which swelled distinctly the sporangium. Optimal growth occured between pH 4.2 and 4.8 at 55°C. It grew best under autotrophic conditions, but organic substrates including short chain fatty acids, amino acids and alcohols could also support heterotrophic growth. Sugars were not metabolized. The hydrogenase was soluble but did not reduce pyridine nucleotides.

Based on its morphological and biochemical features, the organism belongs to the genus Bacillus, but differs from all the previously described species. It is therefore proposed as constituting a new species, Bacillus tusciae.

Key words

Bacillus tusciae New species Taxonomy Ecology Chemolithoautotrophy Hydrogen oxidation Hydrogenase Thermophily Geothermal manifestation Solfatara 



standard saline citrate buffer

0.15 M NaCl

0.015 M trisodium citrate, pH 7.0


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 1984

Authors and Affiliations

  • Fabienne Bonjour
    • 1
  • Michel Aragno
    • 1
  1. 1.Laboratoire de MicrobiologieInstitut de Botanique de l'UniversitéNeuchâtelSwitzerland

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