, Volume 19, Issue 6, pp 1183–1192 | Cite as

Structural characterization of amphiphilic siderophores produced by a soda lake isolate, Halomonas sp. SL01, reveals cysteine-, phenylalanine- and proline-containing head groups

  • Luis O’mar Serrano FigueroaEmail author
  • Benjamin Schwarz
  • Abigail M. Richards
Original Paper


Soap Lake, located in Washington State, is a naturally occurring saline and alkaline lake. Several organisms inhabiting this lake have been identified as producers of siderophores that are unique in structure. Bacterial isolates, enriched from Soap Lake sediment and water samples, were screened for siderophore production using both the chrome azurol S (CAS) agar plate and liquid methods. Bacterial isolate Halomonas sp. SL01 was found to produce relatively high concentrations of siderophores in liquid medium (up to 40 µM). Siderophores from the isolate were separated from the culture supernatant using solid phase extraction and purified by high-performance liquid chromatography (HPLC). Siderophore structure was determined using LC/MS/MS (liquid chromatography/mass spectrometry/mass spectrometry) and fatty acid methyl ester (FAME) GC. Two distinct new families of amphiphilic siderophores were produced by isolate SL01. All siderophores ranged in size from 989 to 1096 atomic mass units and consisted of a conserved peptidic head group (per family), which coordinates iron, coupled to fatty acid moieties. The fatty acyl moieties were C10–C14 in length and some with hydroxyl substitutions at the third α position. These siderophores resembled amphiphilic aquachelin siderophores produced by Halomonas aquamarina strain DS40M3, a marine bacterium as well as siderophores from isolate Halomonas sp. SL28 that was found to produce amphiphilic siderophores. Bacteria thriving under saline and alkaline conditions are capable of producing unique siderophores resembling those produced by microbes inhabiting marine environments.


Halomonas Amphiphilic siderophores Cysteine Phenylalanine Proline Halochelins 



Mass spectrometry data was done with the assistance of Dr. Jonathan Hilmer from the Mass Spectrometry Facility in the Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry, Montana State University-Bozeman. Special thanks to Ann Willis for HPLC support. Also thanks to Dr. Royce Wilkinson for assistance with the lyophilizer and to MIDI Labs, Inc. for the FAME and GC analysis. Funding was from the National Science Foundation (NSF) Grant Number EEC-0927109.

Compliance with ethical standards

Conflict of interest

The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.

Supplementary material

792_2015_790_MOESM1_ESM.pdf (799 kb)
Supplementary material 1 (PDF 798 kb)


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Copyright information

© Springer Japan 2015

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Microbiology and ImmunologyMontana State UniversityBozemanUSA
  2. 2.Department of Chemistry and BiochemistryMontana State UniversityBozemanUSA
  3. 3.Department of Chemical and Biological EngineeringMontana State UniversityBozemanUSA
  4. 4.Center for Biofilm EngineeringMontana State UniversityBozemanUSA

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