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Sample records for microbial cell cycle

  1. The microbial cell cycle

    SciTech Connect

    Nurse, P.; Streiblova, E.

    1984-01-01

    This book concentrates on the major problems of cell cycle control in microorganisms. A wide variety of microorganisms, ranging from bacteria and yeasts to hyphal fungi, algae, and ciliates are analyzed, with emphasis on the basic similarities among the organisms. Different ways of looking at cell cycle control which emphasize aspects of the problem such as circadian rhythms, limit cycle oscillators, and cell size models, are considered. New approaches such as the study of cell cycle mutants, and cloning of cell cycle control genes are also presented.

  2. Single cell visualization of sulfur cycling in intertidal microbial mats

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dawson, K.; Green, A.; Orphan, V. J.

    2014-12-01

    Chemoautrophic microbial mats form in shallow intertidal pools adjacent to sulfidic hydrothermal vents in San Pedro, CA. Sulfide is primarily geologically derived. However, microscopy revealed deltaproteobacteria closely associated with Beggiatoa -like filaments, indicating an additional biogenic sulfide source, derived from sulfate reduction or sulfur disproportionation. At small scales the intercellular interaction of sulfide producing and sulfide consuming bacteria may play a important role in biogeochemical sulfur cycling. We explored the intracellular transfer of biologically derived sulfide in this system with triple and quadruple stable isotope labeling experiments: 13C, 15N, 33S, and 34S. Silicon wafers colonized by microbial mats in situ, were then incubated with 34SO42- or 34SO42- and 33S0 as well as 13C-acetate and 15NH4+and analyzed by fluorescent in situ hybridization (FISH) coupled to nanometer-scale secondary ion mass spectrometry (NanoSIMS). We observed enrichment of 34S and 33S in both deltaproteobacteria and sulfide oxidizing gammaproteobacteria. Greater enrichment relative to killed controls occurred in deltaproteobacteria than the sulfide oxidizers during both sulfate reducing (Δ34Sdelta-killed = 240‰, Δ34Sgamma-killed = 40‰) and sulfur disproportionating incubations (Δ33Sdelta-killed = 1730‰, Δ33Sgamma-killed = 1050‰). These results provide a direct visualization of interspecies sulfur transfer and indicate that biogenic sulfide derived from either sulfate or intermediate oxidation state sulfur species plays a role in sulfur cycling in this system.

  3. Duty Cycling Influences Current Generation in Multi-Anode Environmental Microbial Fuel Cells

    SciTech Connect

    Gardel, EJ; Nielsen, ME; Grisdela, PT; Girguis, PR

    2012-05-01

    Improving microbial fuel cell (MFC) performance continues to be the subject of research, yet the role of operating conditions, specifically duty cycling, on MFC performance has been modestly addressed. We present a series of studies in which we use a 15-anode environmental MFC to explore how duty cycling (variations in the time an anode is connected) influences cumulative charge, current, and microbial composition. The data reveal particular switching intervals that result in the greatest time-normalized current. When disconnection times are sufficiently short, there is a striking decrease in current due to an increase in the overall electrode reaction resistance. This was observed over a number of whole cell potentials. Based on these results, we posit that replenishment of depleted electron donors within the biofilm and surrounding diffusion layer is necessary for maximum charge transfer, and that proton flux may be not limiting in the highly buffered aqueous phases that are common among environmental MFCs. Surprisingly, microbial diversity analyses found no discernible difference in gross community composition among duty cycling treatments, suggesting that duty cycling itself has little or no effect. Such duty cycling experiments are valuable in determining which factors govern performance of bioelectrochemical systems and might also be used to optimize field-deployed systems.

  4. The microbial nitrogen cycle.

    PubMed

    Jetten, Mike S M

    2008-11-01

    This special issue highlights several recent discoveries in the microbial nitrogen cycle including the diversity of nitrogen-fixing bacteria in special habitats, distribution and contribution of aerobic ammonium oxidation by bacteria and crenarchaea in various aquatic and terrestrial ecosystems, regulation of metabolism in nitrifying bacteria, the molecular diversity of denitrifying microorganisms and their enzymes, the functional diversity of freshwater and marine anammox bacteria, the physiology of nitrite-dependent anaerobic methane oxidation and the degradation of recalcitrant organic nitrogen compounds. Simultaneously the articles in this issue show that many questions still need to be addressed, and that the microbes involved in catalyzing the nitrogen conversions still harbour many secrets that need to be disclosed to fully understand the biogeochemical nitrogen cycle, and make future predictions and global modelling possible.

  5. [Microbial geochemical calcium cycle].

    PubMed

    Zavarzin, G A

    2002-01-01

    The participation of microorganisms in the geochemical calcium cycle is the most important factor maintaining neutral conditions on the Earth. This cycle has profound influence on the fate of inorganic carbon, and, thereby, on the removal of CO2 from the atmosphere. The major part of calcium deposits was formed in the Precambrian, when prokaryotic biosphere predominated. After that, calcium recycling based on biogenic deposition by skeletal organisms became the main process. Among prokaryotes, only a few representatives, e.g., cyanobacteria, exhibit a special calcium function. The geochemical calcium cycle is made possible by the universal features of bacteria involved in biologically mediated reactions and is determined by the activities of microbial communities. In the prokaryotic system, the calcium cycle begins with the leaching of igneous rock predominantly through the action of the community of organotrophic organisms. The release of carbon dioxide to the soil air by organotrophic aerobes leads to leaching with carbonic acid and soda salinization. Under anoxic conditions, of major importance is the organic acid production by primary anaerobes (fermentative microorganisms). Calcium carbonate is precipitated by secondary anaerobes (sulfate reducers) and to a smaller degree by methanogens. The role of the cyanobacterial community in carbonate deposition is exposed by stromatolites, which are the most common organo-sedimentary Precambrian structures. Deposition of carbonates in cyanobacterial mats as a consequence of photoassimilation of CO2 does not appear to be a significant process. It is argued that carbonates were deposited at the boundary between the "soda continent", which emerged as a result of subaerial leaching with carbonic acid, and the ocean containing Ca2+. Such ecotones provided favorable conditions for the development of the benthic cyanobacterial community, which was a precursor of stromatolites.

  6. A Microbial Avenue to Cell Cycle Control in the Plant Superkingdom[C][W][OPEN

    PubMed Central

    Tulin, Frej; Cross, Frederick R.

    2014-01-01

    Research in yeast and animals has resulted in a well-supported consensus model for eukaryotic cell cycle control. The fit of this model to early diverging eukaryotes, such as the plant kingdom, remains unclear. Using the green alga Chlamydomonas reinhardtii, we developed an efficient pipeline, incorporating robotics, semiautomated image analysis, and deep sequencing, to molecularly identify >50 genes, mostly conserved in higher plants, specifically required for cell division but not cell growth. Mutated genes include the cyclin-dependent kinases CDKA (resembling yeast and animal Cdk1) and the plant-specific CDKB. The Chlamydomonas cell cycle consists of a long G1 during which cells can grow >10-fold, followed by multiple rapid cycles of DNA replication and segregation. CDKA and CDKB execute nonoverlapping functions: CDKA promotes transition between G1 and entry into the division cycle, while CDKB is essential specifically for spindle formation and nuclear division, but not for DNA replication, once CDKA-dependent initiation has occurred. The anaphase-promoting complex is required for similar steps in the Chlamydomonas cell cycle as in Opisthokonts; however, the spindle assembly checkpoint, which targets the APC in Opisthokonts, appears severely attenuated in Chlamydomonas, based on analysis of mutants affecting microtubule function. This approach allows unbiased integration of the consensus cell cycle control model with innovations specific to the plant lineage. PMID:25336509

  7. A microbial avenue to cell cycle control in the plant superkingdom.

    PubMed

    Tulin, Frej; Cross, Frederick R

    2014-10-01

    Research in yeast and animals has resulted in a well-supported consensus model for eukaryotic cell cycle control. The fit of this model to early diverging eukaryotes, such as the plant kingdom, remains unclear. Using the green alga Chlamydomonas reinhardtii, we developed an efficient pipeline, incorporating robotics, semiautomated image analysis, and deep sequencing, to molecularly identify >50 genes, mostly conserved in higher plants, specifically required for cell division but not cell growth. Mutated genes include the cyclin-dependent kinases CDKA (resembling yeast and animal Cdk1) and the plant-specific CDKB. The Chlamydomonas cell cycle consists of a long G1 during which cells can grow >10-fold, followed by multiple rapid cycles of DNA replication and segregation. CDKA and CDKB execute nonoverlapping functions: CDKA promotes transition between G1 and entry into the division cycle, while CDKB is essential specifically for spindle formation and nuclear division, but not for DNA replication, once CDKA-dependent initiation has occurred. The anaphase-promoting complex is required for similar steps in the Chlamydomonas cell cycle as in Opisthokonts; however, the spindle assembly checkpoint, which targets the APC in Opisthokonts, appears severely attenuated in Chlamydomonas, based on analysis of mutants affecting microtubule function. This approach allows unbiased integration of the consensus cell cycle control model with innovations specific to the plant lineage.

  8. Microbial Fuel Cell as Life Detector: Arsenic Cycling in Hypersaline Environments

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Miller, L. G.; Blum, J. S.; Oremland, R. S.

    2006-12-01

    Detection of extant life on Mars or Europa is a future goal of exobiology. For the present, biosignatures arising from life in extreme environments on Earth suggest how to search for life elsewhere. One such biosignature is the electrical current derived from the metabolic activity of microorganisms, which may be measured using microbial fuel cells (MFCs). MFCs generate electricity by coupling bacterially mediated redox transformations to electrochemical reactions through a circuit. Our laboratory fuel cell employs solid graphite electrodes and uses a proton exchange membrane to separate anode (anaerobic) and cathode (aerobic) chambers. Mineral salts media are circulated by peristaltic pump through the chambers and through temperature-controlled reservoirs that are sparged with nitrogen (anode) or oxygen (cathode). In experiments with pure cultures, bacteria reduced arsenate to arsenite in the anode chamber, and produced electrical power in the process. Power production was sustained in the MFC only while bacteria were active. An arsenate respiring bacterium, Bacillus selenitireducens, isolated from moderately-hypersaline Mono Lake, CA grew on lactate using arsenate as the electron acceptor and also grew without arsenate, using the anode as the electron acceptor. Power densities (per unit area of anode surface) of 60 μW m-2 were achieved during growth without arsenate. Less power (3 μW m-2) was produced when arsenate was available because arsenate acted as an alternate electron acceptor to the anode. Another arsenate respiring bacterium, strain SLAS-1, isolated from extremely-hypersaline Searles Lake, CA respired lactate and reduced arsenate in the MFC, albeit more slowly. An arsenite oxidizing bacterium, Alkalilimnicola ehrlichii, isolated from Mono Lake will also be tested for its ability to generate electricity before proceeding to an examination of biocurrent production using natural sediments and waters from Mono Lake and Searles Lake.

  9. Interconnection between tricarboxylic acid cycle and energy generation in microbial fuel cell performed by desulfuromonas acetoxidans IMV B-7384

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Vasyliv, Oresta M.; Maslovska, Olga D.; Ferensovych, Yaroslav P.; Bilyy, Oleksandr I.; Hnatush, Svitlana O.

    2015-05-01

    Desulfuromonas acetoxidans IMV B-7384 is exoelectrogenic obligate anaerobic sulfur-reducing bacterium. Its one of the first described electrogenic bacterium that performs complete oxidation of an organic substrate with electron transfer directly to the electrode in microbial fuel cell (MFC). This bacterium is very promising for MFC development because of inexpensive cultivation medium, high survival rate and selective resistance to various heavy metal ions. The size of D. acetoxidans IMV B-7384 cells is comparatively small (0.4-0.8×1-2 μm) that is highly beneficial while application of porous anode material because of complete bacterial cover of an electrode area with further significant improvement of the effectiveness of its usage. The interconnection between functioning of reductive stage of tricarboxylic acid (TCA) cycle under anaerobic conditions, and MFC performance was established. Malic, pyruvic, fumaric and succinic acids in concentration 42 mM were separately added into the anode chamber of MFC as the redox agents. Application of malic acid caused the most stabile and the highest power generation in comparison with other investigated organic acids. Its maximum equaled 10.07±0.17mW/m2 on 136 hour of bacterial cultivation. Under addition of pyruvic, succinic and fumaric acids into the anode chamber of MFC the maximal power values equaled 5.80±0.25 mW/m2; 3.2±0.11 mW/m2, and 2.14±0.19 mW/m2 respectively on 40, 56 and 32 hour of bacterial cultivation. Hence the malic acid conversion via reductive stage of TCA cycle is shown to be the most efficient process in terms of electricity generation by D. acetoxidans IMV B-7384 in MFC under anaerobic conditions.

  10. Microbial extracellular enzymes and the marine carbon cycle.

    PubMed

    Arnosti, Carol

    2011-01-01

    Extracellular enzymes initiate microbial remineralization of organic matter by hydrolyzing substrates to sizes sufficiently small to be transported across cell membranes. As much of marine primary productivity is processed by heterotrophic microbes, the substrate specificities of extracellular enzymes, the rates at which they function in seawater and sediments, and factors controlling their production, distribution, and active lifetimes, are central to carbon cycling in marine systems. In this review, these topics are considered from biochemical, microbial/molecular biological, and geochemical perspectives. Our understanding of the capabilities and limitations of heterotrophic microbial communities has been greatly advanced in recent years, in part through genetic and genomic approaches. New methods to measure enzyme activities in the field are needed to keep pace with these advances and to pursue intriguing evidence that patterns of enzyme activities in different environments are linked to differences in microbial community composition that may profoundly affect the marine carbon cycle.

  11. Nitrogen cycle in microbial mats: completely unknown?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Coban, O.; Bebout, B.

    2015-12-01

    Microbial mats are thought to have originated around 3.7 billion years ago, most likely in the areas around submarine hydrothermal vents, which supplied a source of energy in the form of reduced chemical species from the Earth's interior. Active hydrothermal vents are also believed to exist on Jupiter's moon Europa, Saturn's moon Enceladus, and on Mars, earlier in that planet's history. Microbial mats have been an important force in the maintenance of Earth's ecosystems and the first photosynthesis was also originated there. Microbial mats are believed to exhibit most, if not all, biogeochemical processes that exist in aquatic ecosystems, due to the presence of different physiological groups of microorganisms therein. While most microbially mediated biogeochemical transformations have been shown to occur within microbial mats, the nitrogen cycle in the microbial mats has received very little study in spite of the fact that nitrogen usually limits growth in marine environments. We will present the first results in the determination of a complete nitrogen budget for a photosynthetic microbial mat. Both in situ sources and sinks of nitrogen in photosynthetic microbial mats are being measured using stable isotope techniques. Our work has a particular focus on recently described, but poorly understood, processes, e.g., anammox and dissimilatory nitrate reduction, and an emphasis on understanding the role that nitrogen cycling may play in generating biogenic nitrogen isotopic signatures and biomarker molecules. Measurements of environmental controls on nitrogen cycling should offer insight into the nature of co-evolution of these microbial communities and their planets of origin. Identifying the spatial (microscale) as well as temporal (diel and seasonal) distribution of nitrogen transformations, e.g., rates of nitrification and denitrification, within mats, particularly with respect to the distribution of photosynthetically-produced oxygen, is anticipated. The results

  12. Simulated Carbon Cycling in a Model Microbial Mat.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Decker, K. L.; Potter, C. S.

    2006-12-01

    We present here the novel addition of detailed organic carbon cycling to our model of a hypersaline microbial mat ecosystem. This ecosystem model, MBGC (Microbial BioGeoChemistry), simulates carbon fixation through oxygenic and anoxygenic photosynthesis, and the release of C and electrons for microbial heterotrophs via cyanobacterial exudates and also via a pool of dead cells. Previously in MBGC, the organic portion of the carbon cycle was simplified into a black-box rate of accumulation of simple and complex organic compounds based on photosynthesis and mortality rates. We will discuss the novel inclusion of fermentation as a source of carbon and electrons for use in methanogenesis and sulfate reduction, and the influence of photorespiration on labile carbon exudation rates in cyanobacteria. We will also discuss the modeling of decomposition of dead cells and the ultimate release of inorganic carbon. The detailed modeling of organic carbon cycling is important to the accurate representation of inorganic carbon flux through the mat, as well as to accurate representation of growth models of the heterotrophs under different environmental conditions. Because the model ecosystem is an analog of ancient microbial mats that had huge impacts on the atmosphere of early earth, this MBGC can be useful as a biological component to either early earth models or models of other planets that potentially harbor life.

  13. Applications of Microbial Cell Sensors

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Shimomura-Shimizu, Mifumi; Karube, Isao

    Since the first microbial cell sensor was studied by Karube et al. in 1977, many types of microbial cell sensors have been developed as analytical tools. The microbial cell sensor utilizes microbes as a sensing element and a transducer. The characteristics of microbial cell sensors as sensing devices are a complete contrast to those of enzyme sensors or immunosensors, which are highly specific for the substrates of interest, although the specificity of the microbial cell sensor has been improved by genetic modification of the microbe used as the sensing element. Microbial cell sensors have the advantages of tolerance to measuring conditions, a long lifetime, and good cost performance, and have the disadvantage of a long response time. In this review, applications of microbial cell sensors are summarized.

  14. Microbial Cell Imaging

    SciTech Connect

    Doktycz, Mitchel John; Sullivan, Claretta; Mortensen, Ninell P; Allison, David P

    2011-01-01

    the maximum scan size (roughly 100 x 100 {mu}m) and the restricted movement of the cantilever in the Z (or height) direction. In most commercial AFMs, the Z range is restricted to roughly 10 {mu}m such that the height of cells to be imaged must be seriously considered. Nevertheless, AFM can provide structural-functional information at nanometer resolution and do so in physiologically relevant environments. Further, instrumentation for scanning probe microscopy continues to advance. Systems for high-speed imaging are becoming available, and techniques for looking inside the cells are being demonstrated. The ability to combine AFM with other imaging modalities is likely to have an even greater impact on microbiological studies. AFM studies of intact microbial cells started to appear in the literature in the 1990s. For example, AFM studies of Saccharomyces cerevisiae examined buddings cars after cell division and detailed changes related to cell growth processes. Also, the first AFM studies of bacterial biofilms appeared. In the late 1990s, AFM studies of intact fungal spores described clear changes in spore surfaces upon germination, and studies of individual bacterial cells were also described. These early bacterial imaging studies examined changes in bacterial morphology due to antimicrobial peptides exposure and bacterial adhesion properties. The majority of these early studies were carried out on dried samples and took advantage of the resolving power of AFM. The lack of cell mounting procedures presented an impediment for cell imaging studies. Subsequently, several approaches to mounting microbial cells have been developed, and these techniques are described later. Also highlighted are general considerations for microbial imaging and a description of some of the various applications of AFM to microbiology.

  15. Microbial fuel cells

    SciTech Connect

    Nealson, Kenneth H; Pirbazari, Massoud; Hsu, Lewis

    2013-04-09

    A microbial fuel cell includes an anode compartment with an anode and an anode biocatalyst and a cathode compartment with a cathode and a cathode biocatalyst, with a membrane positioned between the anode compartment and the cathode compartment, and an electrical pathway between the anode and the cathode. The anode biocatalyst is capable of catalyzing oxidation of an organic substance, and the cathode biocatalyst is capable of catalyzing reduction of an inorganic substance. The reduced organic substance can form a precipitate, thereby removing the inorganic substance from solution. In some cases, the anode biocatalyst is capable of catalyzing oxidation of an inorganic substance, and the cathode biocatalyst is capable of catalyzing reduction of an organic or inorganic substance.

  16. Sulphur cycling in a Neoarchaean microbial mat.

    PubMed

    Meyer, N R; Zerkle, A L; Fike, D A

    2017-01-27

    Multiple sulphur (S) isotope ratios are powerful proxies to understand the complexity of S biogeochemical cycling through Deep Time. The disappearance of a sulphur mass-independent fractionation (S-MIF) signal in rocks <~2.4 Ga has been used to date a dramatic rise in atmospheric oxygen levels. However, intricacies of the S-cycle before the Great Oxidation Event remain poorly understood. For example, the isotope composition of coeval atmospherically derived sulphur species is still debated. Furthermore, variation in Archaean pyrite δ(34) S values has been widely attributed to microbial sulphate reduction (MSR). While petrographic evidence for Archaean early-diagenetic pyrite formation is common, textural evidence for the presence and distribution of MSR remains enigmatic. We combined detailed petrographic and in situ, high-resolution multiple S-isotope studies (δ(34) S and Δ(33) S) using secondary ion mass spectrometry (SIMS) to document the S-isotope signatures of exceptionally well-preserved, pyritised microbialites in shales from the ~2.65-Ga Lokammona Formation, Ghaap Group, South Africa. The presence of MSR in this Neoarchaean microbial mat is supported by typical biogenic textures including wavy crinkled laminae, and early-diagenetic pyrite containing <26‰ μm-scale variations in δ(34) S and Δ(33) S = -0.21 ± 0.65‰ (±1σ). These large variations in δ(34) S values suggest Rayleigh distillation of a limited sulphate pool during high rates of MSR. Furthermore, we identified a second, morphologically distinct pyrite phase that precipitated after lithification, with δ(34) S = 8.36 ± 1.16‰ and Δ(33) S = 5.54 ± 1.53‰ (±1σ). We propose that the S-MIF signature of this secondary pyrite does not reflect contemporaneous atmospheric processes at the time of deposition; instead, it formed by the influx of later-stage sulphur-bearing fluids containing an inherited atmospheric S-MIF signal and/or from magnetic isotope effects during

  17. Microbial iron-redox cycling in subsurface environments.

    PubMed

    Roden, Eric E

    2012-12-01

    In addition to its central role in mediating electron-transfer reactions within all living cells, iron undergoes extracellular redox transformations linked to microbial energy generation through utilization of Fe(II) as a source of chemical energy or Fe(III) as an electron acceptor for anaerobic respiration. These processes permit microbial populations and communities to engage in cyclic coupled iron oxidation and reduction within redox transition zones in subsurface environments. In the present paper, I review and synthesize a few case studies of iron-redox cycling in subsurface environments, highlighting key biochemical aspects of the extracellular iron-redox metabolisms involved. Of specific interest are the coupling of iron oxidation and reduction in field and experimental systems that model redox gradients and fluctuations in the subsurface, and novel pathways and organisms involved in the redox cycling of insoluble iron-bearing minerals. These findings set the stage for rapid expansion in our knowledge of the range of extracellular electron-transfer mechanisms utilized by subsurface micro-organisms. The observation that closely coupled oxidation and reduction of iron can take place under conditions common to the subsurface motivates this expansion in pursuit of molecular tools for studying iron-redox cycling communities in situ.

  18. Why should cell biologists study microbial pathogens?

    PubMed

    Welch, Matthew D

    2015-12-01

    One quarter of all deaths worldwide each year result from infectious diseases caused by microbial pathogens. Pathogens infect and cause disease by producing virulence factors that target host cell molecules. Studying how virulence factors target host cells has revealed fundamental principles of cell biology. These include important advances in our understanding of the cytoskeleton, organelles and membrane-trafficking intermediates, signal transduction pathways, cell cycle regulators, the organelle/protein recycling machinery, and cell-death pathways. Such studies have also revealed cellular pathways crucial for the immune response. Discoveries from basic research on the cell biology of pathogenesis are actively being translated into the development of host-targeted therapies to treat infectious diseases. Thus there are many reasons for cell biologists to incorporate the study of microbial pathogens into their research programs.

  19. Specific cell cycle synchronization with butyrate and cell cycle analysis

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Synchronized cells have been invaluable for many kinds of cell cycle and cell proliferation studies. Butyrate induces cell cycle arrest and apoptosis in MDBK cells. To explore the possibility of using butyrate-blocked cells to obtain synchronized cells, we investigated the property of the cell cyc...

  20. Cell Cycle Regulators and Cell Death in Immunity

    PubMed Central

    Zebell, Sophia G.; Dong, Xinnian

    2015-01-01

    Summary Various cell death mechanisms are integral to host defense in both plants and mammals. Plant defense against biotrophic pathogens is associated with programmed cell death (PCD) of the infected cell. This effector-triggered PCD is partly analogous to pyroptosis, an inflammatory host cell death process that plays a crucial role in defense against microbial infections in mammals. Plant effector-triggered PCD also shares with mammalian apoptosis the involvement of cell cycle regulators as signaling components. Here we explore the similarities between these different cell death programs as they relate to host defense and their relationship to the cell-cycle. PMID:26468745

  1. Elevated CO2 influences microbial carbon and nitrogen cycling

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Background Elevated atmospheric CO2 (eCO2) has been shown to have significant effects on terrestrial ecosystems. However, little is known about its influence on the structure, composition, and functional potential of soil microbial communities, especially carbon (C) and nitrogen (N) cycling. A high-throughput functional gene array (GeoChip 3.0) was used to examine the composition, structure, and metabolic potential of soil microbial communities from a grassland field experiment after ten-year field exposure to ambient and elevated CO2 concentrations. Results Distinct microbial communities were established under eCO2. The abundance of three key C fixation genes encoding ribulose-1,5-bisphosphate carboxylase/oxygenase (Rubisco), carbon monoxide dehydrogenase (CODH) and propionyl-CoA/acetyl-CoA carboxylase (PCC/ACC), significantly increased under eCO2, and so did some C degrading genes involved in starch, cellulose, and hemicellulose. Also, nifH and nirS involved in N cycling were significantly stimulated. In addition, based on variation partitioning analysis (VPA), the soil microbial community structure was largely shaped by direct and indirect eCO2-driven factors. Conclusions These findings suggest that the soil microbial community structure and their ecosystem functioning for C and N cycling were altered dramatically at eCO2. This study provides new insights into our understanding of the feedback response of soil microbial communities to elevated CO2 and global change. PMID:23718284

  2. Nitrogen Cycling Potential of a Grassland Litter Microbial Community.

    PubMed

    Nelson, Michaeline B; Berlemont, Renaud; Martiny, Adam C; Martiny, Jennifer B H

    2015-10-01

    Because microorganisms have different abilities to utilize nitrogen (N) through various assimilatory and dissimilatory pathways, microbial composition and diversity likely influence N cycling in an ecosystem. Terrestrial plant litter decomposition is often limited by N availability; however, little is known about the microorganisms involved in litter N cycling. In this study, we used metagenomics to characterize the potential N utilization of microbial communities in grassland plant litter. The frequencies of sequences associated with eight N cycling pathways differed by several orders of magnitude. Within a pathway, the distributions of these sequences among bacterial orders differed greatly. Many orders within the Actinobacteria and Proteobacteria appeared to be N cycling generalists, carrying genes from most (five or six) of the pathways. In contrast, orders from the Bacteroidetes were more specialized and carried genes for fewer (two or three) pathways. We also investigated how the abundance and composition of microbial N cycling genes differed over time and in response to two global change manipulations (drought and N addition). For many pathways, the abundance and composition of N cycling taxa differed over time, apparently reflecting precipitation patterns. In contrast to temporal variability, simulated global change had minor effects on N cycling potential. Overall, this study provides a blueprint for the genetic potential of N cycle processes in plant litter and a baseline for comparisons to other ecosystems.

  3. Microbial Fuel Cells and Sensors

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2007-11-02

    funding foreign research over Quality U.S. research needs to be investigated by government officials. PATENT INFORMATION: Improved fuel cell designs and...Zeikus. Analysis of microbial electrochemical activity in marine sediment. (In preparation) REPOT D CUM NTA ON AGEForm Approved REPOT D CUM NTATON

  4. Energy from algae using microbial fuel cells.

    PubMed

    Velasquez-Orta, Sharon B; Curtis, Tom P; Logan, Bruce E

    2009-08-15

    Bioelectricity production from a phytoplankton, Chlorella vulgaris, and a macrophyte, Ulva lactuca was examined in single chamber microbial fuel cells (MFCs). MFCs were fed with the two algae (as powders), obtaining differences in energy recovery, degradation efficiency, and power densities. C. vulgaris produced more energy generation per substrate mass (2.5 kWh/kg), but U. lactuca was degraded more completely over a batch cycle (73 +/- 1% COD). Maximum power densities obtained using either single cycle or multiple cycle methods were 0.98 W/m(2) (277 W/m(3)) using C. vulgaris, and 0.76 W/m(2) (215 W/m(3)) using U. lactuca. Polarization curves obtained using a common method of linear sweep voltammetry (LSV) overestimated maximum power densities at a scan rate of 1 mV/s. At 0.1 mV/s, however, the LSV polarization data was in better agreement with single- and multiple-cycle polarization curves. The fingerprints of microbial communities developed in reactors had only 11% similarity to inocula and clustered according to the type of bioprocess used. These results demonstrate that algae can in principle, be used as a renewable source of electricity production in MFCs.

  5. Microbial activities and phosphorus cycling: An application of oxygen isotope ratios in phosphate

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Stout, Lisa M.; Joshi, Sunendra R.; Kana, Todd M.; Jaisi, Deb P.

    2014-08-01

    Microorganisms carry out biochemical transformations of nutrients that make up their cells. Therefore, understanding how these nutrients are transformed or cycled in natural environments requires knowledge of microbial activity. Commonly used indicators for microbial activity typically include determining microbial respiration by O2/CO2 measurements, cell counts, and measurement of enzyme activities. However, coupled studies on nutrient cycling and microbial activity are not given enough emphasis. Here we apply phosphate oxygen isotope ratios (δ18OP) as a tool for measurement of microbial activity and compare the rate of isotope exchange with methods of measuring microbial activities that are more commonly applied in environmental studies including respiration, dehydrogenase activity, alkaline phosphatase activity, and cell counts. Our results show that different bacteria may have different strategies for P uptake, storage and release, their respiration and consequently expression of DHA and APase activities, but in general the trend of their enzyme activities are comparable. Phosphate δ18OP values correlated well with these other parameters used to measure microbial activity with the strongest linear relationships between δ18OP and CO2 evolution (r = -0.99). Even though the rate of isotope exchange for each microorganism used in this study is different, the rate per unit CO2 respiration showed one general trend, where δ18OP values move towards equilibrium while CO2 is generated. While this suggests that P cycling among microorganisms used in this study can be generalized, further research is needed to determine whether the microorganism-specific isotope exchange trend may occur in natural environments. In summary, phosphate oxygen isotope measurements may offer an alternative for use as a tracer to measure microbial activity in soils, sediments, and many other natural environments.

  6. Cell cycle effects of drugs

    SciTech Connect

    Dethlefsen, L.A.

    1986-01-01

    This book contains 11 chapters. Some of the chapter titles are: Cell Growth and Division Cycle; Cell Cycle Effects of Alkylating Agents; Biological Effects of Folic Acid Antagonists with Antineoplastic Activity; and Bleomycin-Mode of Action with Particular Reference to the Cell Cycle.

  7. Microbial biomass dynamics dominate N cycle responses to warming in a sub-arctic peatland

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Weedon, J. T.; Aerts, R.; Kowalchuk, G. K.; van Bodegom, P. M.

    2012-04-01

    The balance of primary production and decomposition in sub-arctic peatlands may shift with climate change. Nitrogen availability will modulate this shift, but little is known about the drivers of soil nitrogen dynamics in these environments, and how they are influenced by rising soil temperatures. We used a long-term open top chamber warming experiment in Abisko, Sweden, to test for the interactive effects of spring warming, summer warming and winter snow addition on soil organic and inorganic nitrogen fluxes, potential activities of carbon and nitrogen cycle enzymes, and the structure of the soil-borne microbial communities. Summer warming increased the flux of soil organic nitrogen over the growing season, while simultaneously causing a seasonal decrease in microbial biomass, suggesting that N flux is driven by large late-season dieback of microbes. This change in N cycle dynamics was not reflected in any of the measured potential enzyme activities. Moreover, the soil microbial community structure was stable across treatments, suggesting non-specific microbial dieback. To further test whether the observed patterns were driven by direct temperature effects or indirect effects (via microbial biomass dynamics), we conducted follow-up controlled experiments in soil mesocosms. Experimental additions of dead microbial cells had stronger effects on N pool sizes and enzyme activities than either plant litter addition or a 5 °C alteration in incubation temperatures. Peat respiration was positively affected by both substrate addition and higher incubation temperatures, but the temperature-only effect was not sufficient to account for the increases in respiration observed in previous field experiments. We conclude that warming effects on peatland N cycling (and to some extent C cycling) are dominated by indirect effects, acting through alterations to the seasonal flux of microbe-derived organic matter. We propose that climate change models of soil carbon and nitrogen

  8. Towards a Microbial Thermoelectric Cell

    PubMed Central

    Rodríguez-Barreiro, Raúl; Abendroth, Christian; Vilanova, Cristina; Moya, Andrés; Porcar, Manuel

    2013-01-01

    Microbial growth is an exothermic process. Biotechnological industries produce large amounts of heat, usually considered an undesirable by-product. In this work, we report the construction and characterization of the first microbial thermoelectric cell (MTC), in which the metabolic heat produced by a thermally insulated microbial culture is partially converted into electricity through a thermoelectric device optimized for low ΔT values. A temperature of 41°C and net electric voltage of around 250–600 mV was achieved with 1.7 L baker’s yeast culture. This is the first time microbial metabolic energy has been converted into electricity with an ad hoc thermoelectric device. These results might contribute towards developing a novel strategy to harvest excess heat in the biotechnology industry, in processes such as ethanol fermentation, auto thermal aerobic digestion (ATAD) or bioremediation, which could be coupled with MTCs in a single unit to produce electricity as a valuable by-product of the primary biotechnological product. Additionally, we propose that small portable MTCs could be conceived and inoculated with suitable thermophilic of hyperthermophilic starter cultures and used for powering small electric devices. PMID:23468862

  9. Regenerable Microbial Check Valve - Life cycle tests results

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Atwater, James E.; Wheeler, Richard R., Jr.; Olivadoti, J. T.; Sauer, Richard L.; Flanagan, David T.

    1992-01-01

    Life cycle regeneration testing of the Microbial Check Valve (MCV) that is used on the Shuttle Orbiter to provide microbial control of potable water is currently in progress. Four beds are being challenged with simulated reclaimed waters and repeatedly regenerated. Preliminary results indicate that contaminant systems exhibit unique regeneration periodicities. Cyclic throughput diminishes with increasing cumulative flow. It is considered to be feasible to design a regenerable MCV system which will function without human intervention and with minimal resupply penalty for the 30 year life of the Space Station.

  10. Photosynthetic Microbial Fuel Cells.

    PubMed

    Laureanti, Joseph A; Jones, Anne K

    2017-01-10

    This chapter presents the current state of research on bioelectrochemical systems that include phototrophic organisms. First, we describe what is known of how phototrophs transfer electrons from internal metabolism to external substrates. This includes efforts to understand both the source of electrons and transfer pathways within cells. Second, we consider technological progress toward producing bio-photovoltaic devices with phototrophs. Efforts to improve these devices by changing the species included, the electrode surfaces, and chemical mediators are described. Finally, we consider future directions for this research field.

  11. Global biogeography of microbial nitrogen-cycling traits in soil

    PubMed Central

    Nelson, Michaeline B.; Martiny, Jennifer B. H.

    2016-01-01

    Microorganisms drive much of the Earth’s nitrogen (N) cycle, but we still lack a global overview of the abundance and composition of the microorganisms carrying out soil N processes. To address this gap, we characterized the biogeography of microbial N traits, defined as eight N-cycling pathways, using publically available soil metagenomes. The relative frequency of N pathways varied consistently across soils, such that the frequencies of the individual N pathways were positively correlated across the soil samples. Habitat type, soil carbon, and soil N largely explained the total N pathway frequency in a sample. In contrast, we could not identify major drivers of the taxonomic composition of the N functional groups. Further, the dominant genera encoding a pathway were generally similar among habitat types. The soil samples also revealed an unexpectedly high frequency of bacteria carrying the pathways required for dissimilatory nitrate reduction to ammonium, a little-studied N process in soil. Finally, phylogenetic analysis showed that some microbial groups seem to be N-cycling specialists or generalists. For instance, taxa within the Deltaproteobacteria encoded all eight N pathways, whereas those within the Cyanobacteria primarily encoded three pathways. Overall, this trait-based approach provides a baseline for investigating the relationship between microbial diversity and N cycling across global soils. PMID:27432978

  12. Repeated Anaerobic Microbial Redox Cycling of Iron▿†

    PubMed Central

    Coby, Aaron J.; Picardal, Flynn; Shelobolina, Evgenya; Xu, Huifang; Roden, Eric E.

    2011-01-01

    Some nitrate- and Fe(III)-reducing microorganisms are capable of oxidizing Fe(II) with nitrate as the electron acceptor. This enzymatic pathway may facilitate the development of anaerobic microbial communities that take advantage of the energy available during Fe-N redox oscillations. We examined this phenomenon in synthetic Fe(III) oxide (nanocrystalline goethite) suspensions inoculated with microflora from freshwater river floodplain sediments. Nitrate and acetate were added at alternate intervals in order to induce repeated cycles of microbial Fe(III) reduction and nitrate-dependent Fe(II) oxidation. Addition of nitrate to reduced, acetate-depleted suspensions resulted in rapid Fe(II) oxidation and accumulation of ammonium. High-resolution transmission electron microscopic analysis of material from Fe redox cycling reactors showed amorphous coatings on the goethite nanocrystals that were not observed in reactors operated under strictly nitrate- or Fe(III)-reducing conditions. Microbial communities associated with N and Fe redox metabolism were assessed using a combination of most-probable-number enumerations and 16S rRNA gene analysis. The nitrate-reducing and Fe(III)-reducing cultures were dominated by denitrifying Betaproteobacteria (e.g., Dechloromonas) and Fe(III)-reducing Deltaproteobacteria (Geobacter), respectively; these same taxa were dominant in the Fe cycling cultures. The combined chemical and microbiological data suggest that both Geobacter and various Betaproteobacteria participated in nitrate-dependent Fe(II) oxidation in the cycling cultures. Microbially driven Fe-N redox cycling may have important consequences for both the fate of N and the abundance and reactivity of Fe(III) oxides in sediments. PMID:21742920

  13. How do prokaryotic cells cycle?

    PubMed

    Margolin, William; Bernander, Rolf

    2004-09-21

    This issue of Current Biology features five reviews covering various key aspects of the eukaryotic cell cycle. The topics include initiation of chromosome replication, assembly of the mitotic spindle, cytokinesis, the regulation of cell-cycle progression, and cell-cycle modeling, focusing mainly on budding yeast, fission yeast and animal cell model systems. The reviews underscore common themes as well as key differences in the way these processes are carried out and regulated among the different model organisms. Consequently, an important question is how cell-cycle mechanisms and controls have evolved, particularly in the broader perspective of the three domains of life.

  14. Elevated temperature alters carbon cycling in a model microbial community

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mosier, A.; Li, Z.; Thomas, B. C.; Hettich, R. L.; Pan, C.; Banfield, J. F.

    2013-12-01

    Earth's climate is regulated by biogeochemical carbon exchanges between the land, oceans and atmosphere that are chiefly driven by microorganisms. Microbial communities are therefore indispensible to the study of carbon cycling and its impacts on the global climate system. In spite of the critical role of microbial communities in carbon cycling processes, microbial activity is currently minimally represented or altogether absent from most Earth System Models. Method development and hypothesis-driven experimentation on tractable model ecosystems of reduced complexity, as presented here, are essential for building molecularly resolved, benchmarked carbon-climate models. Here, we use chemoautotropic acid mine drainage biofilms as a model community to determine how elevated temperature, a key parameter of global climate change, regulates the flow of carbon through microbial-based ecosystems. This study represents the first community proteomics analysis using tandem mass tags (TMT), which enable accurate, precise, and reproducible quantification of proteins. We compare protein expression levels of biofilms growing over a narrow temperature range expected to occur with predicted climate changes. We show that elevated temperature leads to up-regulation of proteins involved in amino acid metabolism and protein modification, and down-regulation of proteins involved in growth and reproduction. Closely related bacterial genotypes differ in their response to temperature: Elevated temperature represses carbon fixation by two Leptospirillum genotypes, whereas carbon fixation is significantly up-regulated at higher temperature by a third closely related genotypic group. Leptospirillum group III bacteria are more susceptible to viral stress at elevated temperature, which may lead to greater carbon turnover in the microbial food web through the release of viral lysate. Overall, this proteogenomics approach revealed the effects of climate change on carbon cycling pathways and other

  15. Microbial diversity and carbon cycling in San Francisco Bay wetlands

    SciTech Connect

    Theroux, Susanna; Hartman, Wyatt; He, Shaomei; Tringe, Susannah

    2014-03-21

    Wetland restoration efforts in San Francisco Bay aim to rebuild habitat for endangered species and provide an effective carbon storage solution, reversing land subsidence caused by a century of industrial and agricultural development. However, the benefits of carbon sequestration may be negated by increased methane production in newly constructed wetlands, making these wetlands net greenhouse gas (GHG) sources to the atmosphere. We investigated the effects of wetland restoration on below-ground microbial communities responsible for GHG cycling in a suite of historic and restored wetlands in SF Bay. Using DNA and RNA sequencing, coupled with real-time GHG monitoring, we profiled the diversity and metabolic potential of wetland soil microbial communities. The wetland soils harbor diverse communities of bacteria and archaea whose membership varies with sampling location, proximity to plant roots and sampling depth. Our results also highlight the dramatic differences in GHG production between historic and restored wetlands and allow us to link microbial community composition and GHG cycling with key environmental variables including salinity, soil carbon and plant species.

  16. Microbial contributions to climate change through carbon cycle feedbacks.

    PubMed

    Bardgett, Richard D; Freeman, Chris; Ostle, Nicholas J

    2008-08-01

    There is considerable interest in understanding the biological mechanisms that regulate carbon exchanges between the land and atmosphere, and how these exchanges respond to climate change. An understanding of soil microbial ecology is central to our ability to assess terrestrial carbon cycle-climate feedbacks, but the complexity of the soil microbial community and the many ways that it can be affected by climate and other global changes hampers our ability to draw firm conclusions on this topic. In this paper, we argue that to understand the potential negative and positive contributions of soil microbes to land-atmosphere carbon exchange and global warming requires explicit consideration of both direct and indirect impacts of climate change on microorganisms. Moreover, we argue that this requires consideration of complex interactions and feedbacks that occur between microbes, plants and their physical environment in the context of climate change, and the influence of other global changes which have the capacity to amplify climate-driven effects on soil microbes. Overall, we emphasize the urgent need for greater understanding of how soil microbial ecology contributes to land-atmosphere carbon exchange in the context of climate change, and identify some challenges for the future. In particular, we highlight the need for a multifactor experimental approach to understand how soil microbes and their activities respond to climate change and consequences for carbon cycle feedbacks.

  17. Microbial electrolysis cell with a microbial biocathode.

    PubMed

    Jeremiasse, Adriaan W; Hamelers, Hubertus V M; Buisman, Cees J N

    2010-04-01

    This study demonstrates, for the first time, the proof-of-principle of an MEC in which both the anodic and cathodic reaction are catalyzed by microorganisms. No expensive chemical catalysts, such as platinum, are needed. Two of these MECs were simultaneously operated and reached a maximum of 1.4 A/m(2) at an applied cell voltage of 0.5 V. At a cathode potential of -0.7 V, the biocathode in the MECs had a higher current density (MEC 1: 1.9 A/m(2), MEC 2: 3.3 A/m(2)) than a control cathode (0.3 A/m(2), graphite felt without biofilm) in an electrochemical half cell. This indicates that hydrogen production is catalyzed at the biocathode, likely by electrochemically active microorganisms. The cathodic hydrogen recovery was 17% for MEC 1 and 21% for MEC 2. Hydrogen losses were ascribed to diffusion through membrane and tubing, and methane formation. After 1600 h of operation, the current density of the MECs had decreased to 0.6 A/m(2), probably caused by precipitation of calcium phosphate on the biocathode. The slow deteriorating effect of calcium phosphate, and the production of methane show the importance of studying the combination of bioanode and biocathode in one electrochemical cell, and of studying long term performance of such an MEC.

  18. Microbial fuel cells: novel microbial physiologies and engineering approaches.

    PubMed

    Lovley, Derek R

    2006-06-01

    The possibility of generating electricity with microbial fuel cells has been recognized for some time, but practical applications have been slow to develop. The recent development of a microbial fuel cell that can harvest electricity from the organic matter stored in marine sediments has demonstrated the feasibility of producing useful amounts of electricity in remote environments. Further study of these systems has led to the discovery of microorganisms that conserve energy to support their growth by completely oxidizing organic compounds to carbon dioxide with direct electron transfer to electrodes. This suggests that self-sustaining microbial fuel cells that can effectively convert a diverse range of waste organic matter or renewable biomass to electricity are feasible. Significant progress has recently been made to increase the power output of systems designed to convert organic wastes to electricity, but substantial additional optimization will be required for large-scale electricity production.

  19. The Abbreviated Pluripotent Cell Cycle

    PubMed Central

    Kapinas, Kristina; Grandy, Rodrigo; Ghule, Prachi; Medina, Ricardo; Becker, Klaus; Pardee, Arthur; Zaidi, Sayyed K.; Lian, Jane; Stein, Janet; van Wijnen, Andre; Stein, Gary

    2013-01-01

    Human embryonic stem cells and induced pluripotent stem cells proliferate rapidly and divide symmetrically producing equivalent progeny cells. In contrast, lineage committed cells acquire an extended symmetrical cell cycle. Self-renewal of tissue-specific stem cells is sustained by asymmetric cell division where one progeny cell remains a progenitor while the partner progeny cell exits the cell cycle and differentiates. There are three principal contexts for considering the operation and regulation of the pluripotent cell cycle: temporal, regulatory andstructural. The primary temporal context that the pluripotent self-renewal cell cycle of human embryonic stem cells (hESCs) is a short G1 period without reducing periods of time allocated to S phase, G2, and mitosis. The rules that govern proliferation in hESCs remain to be comprehensively established. However, several lines of evidence suggest a key role for the naïve transcriptome of hESCs, which is competent to stringently regulate the ESC cell cycle. This supports the requirements of pluripotent cells to self propagate while suppressing expression of genes that confer lineage commitment and/or tissue specificity. However, for the first time, we consider unique dimensions to the architectural organization and assembly of regulatory machinery for gene expression in nuclear microenviornments that define parameters of pluripotency. From both fundamental biological and clinical perspectives, understanding control of the abbreviated embryonic stem cell cycle can provide options to coordinate control of proliferation versus differentiation. Wound healing, tissue engineering, and cell-based therapy to mitigate developmental aberrations illustrate applications that benefit from knowledge of the biology of the pluripotent cell cycle. PMID:22552993

  20. Isotopic insights into microbial sulfur cycling in oil reservoirs.

    PubMed

    Hubbard, Christopher G; Cheng, Yiwei; Engelbrekston, Anna; Druhan, Jennifer L; Li, Li; Ajo-Franklin, Jonathan B; Coates, John D; Conrad, Mark E

    2014-01-01

    Microbial sulfate reduction in oil reservoirs (biosouring) is often associated with secondary oil production where seawater containing high sulfate concentrations (~28 mM) is injected into a reservoir to maintain pressure and displace oil. The sulfide generated from biosouring can cause corrosion of infrastructure, health exposure risks, and higher production costs. Isotope monitoring is a promising approach for understanding microbial sulfur cycling in reservoirs, enabling early detection of biosouring, and understanding the impact of souring. Microbial sulfate reduction is known to result in large shifts in the sulfur and oxygen isotope compositions of the residual sulfate, which can be distinguished from other processes that may be occurring in oil reservoirs, such as precipitation of sulfate and sulfide minerals. Key to the success of this method is using the appropriate isotopic fractionation factors for the conditions and processes being monitored. For a set of batch incubation experiments using a mixed microbial culture with crude oil as the electron donor, we measured a sulfur fractionation factor for sulfate reduction of -30‰. We have incorporated this result into a simplified 1D reservoir reactive transport model to highlight how isotopes can help discriminate between biotic and abiotic processes affecting sulfate and sulfide concentrations. Modeling results suggest that monitoring sulfate isotopes can provide an early indication of souring for reservoirs with reactive iron minerals that can remove the produced sulfide, especially when sulfate reduction occurs in the mixing zone between formation waters (FW) containing elevated concentrations of volatile fatty acids (VFAs) and injection water (IW) containing elevated sulfate. In addition, we examine the role of reservoir thermal, geochemical, hydrological, operational and microbiological conditions in determining microbial souring dynamics and hence the anticipated isotopic signatures.

  1. Isotopic insights into microbial sulfur cycling in oil reservoirs

    PubMed Central

    Hubbard, Christopher G.; Cheng, Yiwei; Engelbrekston, Anna; Druhan, Jennifer L.; Li, Li; Ajo-Franklin, Jonathan B.; Coates, John D.; Conrad, Mark E.

    2014-01-01

    Microbial sulfate reduction in oil reservoirs (biosouring) is often associated with secondary oil production where seawater containing high sulfate concentrations (~28 mM) is injected into a reservoir to maintain pressure and displace oil. The sulfide generated from biosouring can cause corrosion of infrastructure, health exposure risks, and higher production costs. Isotope monitoring is a promising approach for understanding microbial sulfur cycling in reservoirs, enabling early detection of biosouring, and understanding the impact of souring. Microbial sulfate reduction is known to result in large shifts in the sulfur and oxygen isotope compositions of the residual sulfate, which can be distinguished from other processes that may be occurring in oil reservoirs, such as precipitation of sulfate and sulfide minerals. Key to the success of this method is using the appropriate isotopic fractionation factors for the conditions and processes being monitored. For a set of batch incubation experiments using a mixed microbial culture with crude oil as the electron donor, we measured a sulfur fractionation factor for sulfate reduction of −30‰. We have incorporated this result into a simplified 1D reservoir reactive transport model to highlight how isotopes can help discriminate between biotic and abiotic processes affecting sulfate and sulfide concentrations. Modeling results suggest that monitoring sulfate isotopes can provide an early indication of souring for reservoirs with reactive iron minerals that can remove the produced sulfide, especially when sulfate reduction occurs in the mixing zone between formation waters (FW) containing elevated concentrations of volatile fatty acids (VFAs) and injection water (IW) containing elevated sulfate. In addition, we examine the role of reservoir thermal, geochemical, hydrological, operational and microbiological conditions in determining microbial souring dynamics and hence the anticipated isotopic signatures. PMID:25285094

  2. The abbreviated pluripotent cell cycle.

    PubMed

    Kapinas, Kristina; Grandy, Rodrigo; Ghule, Prachi; Medina, Ricardo; Becker, Klaus; Pardee, Arthur; Zaidi, Sayyed K; Lian, Jane; Stein, Janet; van Wijnen, Andre; Stein, Gary

    2013-01-01

    Human embryonic stem cells (hESCs) and induced pluripotent stem cells proliferate rapidly and divide symmetrically producing equivalent progeny cells. In contrast, lineage committed cells acquire an extended symmetrical cell cycle. Self-renewal of tissue-specific stem cells is sustained by asymmetric cell division where one progeny cell remains a progenitor while the partner progeny cell exits the cell cycle and differentiates. There are three principal contexts for considering the operation and regulation of the pluripotent cell cycle: temporal, regulatory, and structural. The primary temporal context that the pluripotent self-renewal cell cycle of hESCs is a short G1 period without reducing periods of time allocated to S phase, G2, and mitosis. The rules that govern proliferation in hESCs remain to be comprehensively established. However, several lines of evidence suggest a key role for the naïve transcriptome of hESCs, which is competent to stringently regulate the embryonic stem cell (ESC) cell cycle. This supports the requirements of pluripotent cells to self-propagate while suppressing expression of genes that confer lineage commitment and/or tissue specificity. However, for the first time, we consider unique dimensions to the architectural organization and assembly of regulatory machinery for gene expression in nuclear microenviornments that define parameters of pluripotency. From both fundamental biological and clinical perspectives, understanding control of the abbreviated ESC cycle can provide options to coordinate control of proliferation versus differentiation. Wound healing, tissue engineering, and cell-based therapy to mitigate developmental aberrations illustrate applications that benefit from knowledge of the biology of the pluripotent cell cycle.

  3. Enzymatic assays of sediments from North Pond (IODP Expedition 336) to elucidate microbial phosphorus cycling strategies

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Defforey, D.; Paytan, A.

    2015-12-01

    Phosphorus (P) is a key macronutrient for living cells and its availability is limited in the deep subseafloor environment, a habitat estimated to contain up to 1% of Earth's total biomass. The existence and activity of deep subseafloor microbial populations have profound implications on global biogeochemical cycles and our understanding of the limits of life. However, little is known about the impact of the deep biosphere on sedimentary P cycling and P diagenetic processes. Our previous work has shown that sedimentary P at North Pond is mainly present in mineral phases, and that refractory organic P is detectable throughout the sediment column. The latter could constitute a P source to the deep biosphere. Alternatively, microorganisms could have mechanisms to harvest P from recalcitrant mineral phases. The aim of this study is to determine the presence and maximum potential activity of enzymes involved in microbial P uptake in deep-sea sediments. These include phosphomonoesterases, such as alkaline phosphatase, phosphodiesterases, pyrophosphatase and phosphonatases. The sediment samples used for this study were collected at North Pond, a sediment pond located on the western flank of the Mid-Atlantic Ridge, during IODP Expedition 336. This work will provide key insights into the microbial P uptake mechanisms at play in open ocean sediments, and their effects on sedimentary P cycling. These results, in conjunction with our previous work investigating P geochemistry at North Pond, will yield valuable information regarding the impact of the deep biosphere on P cycling in open ocean sediments.

  4. Microbial Carbon Cycling in Permafrost-Affected Soils

    SciTech Connect

    Vishnivetskaya, T.; Liebner, Susanne; Wilhelm, Ronald; Wagner, Dirk

    2011-01-01

    The Arctic plays a key role in Earth s climate system as global warming is predicted to be most pronounced at high latitudes and because one third of the global carbon pool is stored in ecosystems of the northern latitudes. In order to improve our understanding of the present and future carbon dynamics in climate sensitive permafrost ecosystems, present studies concentrate on investigations of microbial controls of greenhouse gas fluxes, on the activity and structure of the involved microbial communities, and on their response to changing environmental conditions. Permafrost-affected soils can function as both a source and a sink for carbon dioxide and methane. Under anaerobic conditions, caused by flooding of the active layer and the effect of backwater above the permafrost table, the mineralization of organic matter can only be realized stepwise by specialized microorganisms. Important intermediates of the organic matter decomposition are hydrogen, carbon dioxide and acetate, which can be further reduced to methane by methanogenic archaea. Evolution of methane fluxes across the subsurface/atmosphere boundary will thereby strongly depend on the activity of anaerobic methanogenic archaea and obligately aerobic methane oxidizing proteobacteria, which are known to be abundant and to significantly reduce methane emissions in permafrost-affected soils. Therefore current studies on methane-cycling microorganisms are the object of particular attention in permafrost studies, because of their key role in the Arctic methane cycle and consequently of their significance for the global methane budget.

  5. The cell cycle and pluripotency.

    PubMed

    Hindley, Christopher; Philpott, Anna

    2013-04-15

    PSCs (pluripotent stem cells) possess two key properties that have made them the focus of global research efforts in regenerative medicine: they have unlimited expansion potential under conditions which favour their preservation as PSCs and they have the ability to generate all somatic cell types upon differentiation (pluripotency). Conditions have been defined in vitro in which pluripotency is maintained, or else differentiation is favoured and is directed towards specific somatic cell types. However, an unanswered question is whether or not the core cell cycle machinery directly regulates the pluripotency and differentiation properties of PSCs. If so, then manipulation of the cell cycle may represent an additional tool by which in vitro maintenance or differentiation of PSCs may be controlled in regenerative medicine. The present review aims to summarize our current understanding of links between the core cell cycle machinery and the maintenance of pluripotency in ESCs (embryonic stem cells) and iPSCs (induced PSCs).

  6. Cell Cycle Regulation by Checkpoints

    PubMed Central

    Barnum, Kevin J.; O’Connell, Matthew J.

    2016-01-01

    Cell cycle checkpoints are surveillance mechanisms that monitor the order, integrity, and fidelity of the major events of the cell cycle. These include growth to the appropriate cell size, the replication and integrity of the chromosomes, and their accurate segregation at mitosis. Many of these mechanisms are ancient in origin and highly conserved, and hence have been heavily informed by studies in simple organisms such as the yeasts. Others have evolved in higher organisms, and control alternative cell fates with significant impact on tumor suppression. Here, we consider these different checkpoint pathways and the consequences of their dysfunction on cell fate. PMID:24906307

  7. Cell cycle regulation by checkpoints.

    PubMed

    Barnum, Kevin J; O'Connell, Matthew J

    2014-01-01

    Cell cycle checkpoints are surveillance mechanisms that monitor the order, integrity, and fidelity of the major events of the cell cycle. These include growth to the appropriate cell size, the replication and integrity of the chromosomes, and their accurate segregation at mitosis. Many of these mechanisms are ancient in origin and highly conserved, and hence have been heavily informed by studies in simple organisms such as the yeasts. Others have evolved in higher organisms, and control alternative cell fates with significant impact on tumor suppression. Here, we consider these different checkpoint pathways and the consequences of their dysfunction on cell fate.

  8. Microbial Influences on Trace Metal Cycling in a Meromictic Lake, Fayetteville Green Lake, NY

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zerkle, A. L.; House, C.; Kump, L.

    2002-12-01

    Microorganisms can exist in aquatic environments at very high cell densities of up to 1011 cells/L, and can accumulate significant quantities of trace metals. Bacteria actively take up bioactive trace metals, including Fe, Zn, Mn, Co, Ni, Cu, and Mo, which function as catalytic centers in metalloproteins and metal-activated enzymes involved in virtually all cellular functions. In addition, bacteria may catalyze the release of trace metals from inorganic substrates by processes such as the reduction of iron and manganese oxides, suggesting that trace metal distributions within a natural environment dominated by microbial processes may be controlled primarily by microbial ecology. Fayetteville Green Lake (FGL), NY, is a permanently stratified meromictic lake that has a well-oxygenated surface water mass (mixolimnion) overlying a relatively stagnant, anoxic deep water mass (monimolimnion). A chemocline separates the water masses at around 20m depth, where oxygen concentrations decrease and sulfate and methane concentrations increase. In addition, previous studies have indicated that trace metals such as V, Cr, Co, Mn, and Fe reach elevated concentrations at the chemocline. Using fluorescent in situ hybridization (FISH) of FGL samples from depths of up to 40m with bacterial and archaeal probes, we have shown that fluctuating redox conditions within the FGL water column correlate with significant variations in the composition and distribution of microbial populations with depth. The mixolimnion is dominated by Eubacteria, with increasing concentrations of Archaea in the lower anoxic zone. Increases in microbial cell densities coincide with increases in trace metals at the chemocline, suggesting microbial activity may be responsible for trace metal release at this boundary. 16S rRNA PCR cloning techniques are currently being used to identify dominant microbial populations at various levels within the FGL water column. Future studies will focus on the potential for these

  9. What cycles the cell? -Robust autonomous cell cycle models.

    PubMed

    Lavi, Orit; Louzoun, Yoram

    2009-12-01

    The cell cycle is one of the best studied cellular mechanisms at the experimental and theoretical levels. Although most of the important biochemical components and reactions of the cell cycle are probably known, the precise way the cell cycle dynamics are driven is still under debate. This phenomenon is not atypical to many other biological systems where the knowledge of the molecular building blocks and the interactions between them does not lead to a coherent picture of the appropriate dynamics. We here propose a methodology to develop plausible models for the driving mechanisms of embryonic and cancerous cell cycles. We first define a key property of the system (a cyclic behaviour in the case of the embryonic cell cycle) and set mathematical constraints on the types of two variable simplified systems robustly reproducing such a cyclic behaviour. We then expand these robust systems to three variables and reiterate the procedure. At each step, we further limit the type of expanded systems to fit the known microbiology until a detailed description of the system is obtained. This methodology produces mathematical descriptions of the required biological systems that are more robust to changes in the precise function and rate constants. This methodology can be extended to practically any type of subcellular mechanism.

  10. Effect of temperature and cycle length on microbial competition in PHB-producing sequencing batch reactor.

    PubMed

    Jiang, Yang; Marang, Leonie; Kleerebezem, Robbert; Muyzer, Gerard; van Loosdrecht, Mark C M

    2011-05-01

    The impact of temperature and cycle length on microbial competition between polyhydroxybutyrate (PHB)-producing populations enriched in feast-famine sequencing batch reactors (SBRs) was investigated at temperatures of 20 °C and 30 °C, and in a cycle length range of 1-18 h. In this study, the microbial community structure of the PHB-producing enrichments was found to be strongly dependent on temperature, but not on cycle length. Zoogloea and Plasticicumulans acidivorans dominated the SBRs operated at 20 °C and 30 °C, respectively. Both enrichments accumulated PHB more than 75% of cell dry weight. Short-term temperature change experiments revealed that P. acidivorans was more temperature sensitive as compared with Zoogloea. This is particularly true for the PHB degradation, resulting in incomplete PHB degradation in P. acidivorans at 20 °C. Incomplete PHB degradation limited biomass growth and allowed Zoogloea to outcompete P. acidivorans. The PHB content at the end of the feast phase correlated well with the cycle length at a constant solid retention time (SRT). These results suggest that to establish enrichment with the capacity to store a high fraction of PHB, the number of cycles per SRT should be minimized independent of the temperature.

  11. Microbial cycling of volatile organic sulfur compounds in anoxic environments.

    PubMed

    Lomans, B P; Pol, A; Op den Camp, H J M

    2002-01-01

    Microbial cycling of volatile organic sulfur compounds (VOSC) is investigated due to the impact these compounds are thought to have on environmental processes like global temperature control, acid precipitation and the global sulfur cycle. Moreover, in several kinds of industries like composting plants and the paper industry VOSC are released causing odor problems. Waste streams containing these compounds must be treated in order to avoid the release of these compounds to the atmosphere. This paper describes the general mechanisms for the production and degradation of methanethiol (MT) and dimethyl sulfide (DMS), two ubiquitous VOSC in anaerobic environments. Slurry incubations indicated that methylation of sulfide and MT resulting in MT and DMS, respectively, is one of the major mechanisms for VOSC in sulfide-rich anaerobic environments. An anaerobic bacterium that is responsible for the formation of MT and DMS through the anaerobic methylation of H2S and MT was isolated from a freshwater pond after enrichment with syringate as a methyl group donating compound and sole carbon source. In spite of the continuous formation of MT and DMS, steady state concentrations are generally very low. This is due to the microbial degradation of these compounds. Experiments with sulfate-rich and sulfate-amended sediment slurries demonstrated that besides methanogens, sulfate-reducing bacteria can also degrade MT and DMS, provided that sulfate is available. A methanogen was isolated that is able to grow on DMS as the sole carbon source. A large survey of sediments slurries of various origin demonstrated that both isolates are commonly occurring inhabitants of anaerobic environments.

  12. Autoradiography and the Cell Cycle.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Jones, C. Weldon

    1992-01-01

    Outlines the stages of a cell biology "pulse-chase" experiment in which the students apply autoradiography techniques to learn about the concept of the cell cycle. Includes (1) seed germination and plant growth; (2) radioactive labeling and fixation of root tips; (3) feulgen staining of root tips; (4) preparation of autoradiograms; and…

  13. Microbial nitrogen cycling response to forest-based bioenergy production.

    PubMed

    Minick, Kevan J; Strahm, Brian D; Fox, Thomas R; Sucre, Eric B; Leggett, Zakiya H

    2015-12-01

    Concern over rising atmospheric CO2 and other greenhouse gases due to fossil fuel combustion has intensified research into carbon-neutral energy production. Approximately 15.8 million ha of pine plantations exist across the southeastern United States, representing a vast land area advantageous for bioenergy production without significant landuse change or diversion of agricultural resources from food production. Furthermore, intercropping of pine with bioenergy grasses could provide annually harvestable, lignocellulosic biomass feedstocks along with production of traditional wood products. Viability of such a system hinges in part on soil nitrogen (N) availability and effects of N competition between pines and grasses on ecosystem productivity. We investigated effects of intercropping loblolly pine (Pinus taeda) with switchgrass (Panicum virgatum) on microbial N cycling processes in the Lower Coastal Plain of North Carolina, USA. Soil samples were collected from bedded rows of pine and interbed space of two treatments, composed of either volunteer native woody and herbaceous vegetation (pine-native) or pure switchgrass (pine-switchgrass) in interbeds. An in vitro 15N pool-dilution technique was employed to quantify gross N transformations at two soil depths (0-5 and 5-15 cm) on four dates in 2012-2013. At the 0-5 cm depth in beds of the pine-switchgrass treatment, gross N mineralization was two to three times higher in November and February compared to the pine-native treatment, resulting in increased NH4(+) availability. Gross and net nitrification were also significantly higher in February in the same pine beds. In interbeds of the pine-switchgrass treatment, gross N mineralization was lower from April to November, but higher in February, potentially reflecting positive effects of switchgrass root-derived C inputs during dormancy on microbial activity. These findings indicate soil N cycling and availability has increased in pine beds of the pine

  14. Microbial Character Related Sulfur Cycle under Dynamic Environmental Factors Based on the Microbial Population Analysis in Sewerage System

    PubMed Central

    Dong, Qian; Shi, Hanchang; Liu, Yanchen

    2017-01-01

    The undesired sulfur cycle derived by microbial population can ultimately causes the serious problems of sewerage systems. However, the microbial community characters under dynamic environment factors in actual sewerage system is still not enough. This current study aimed to character the distributions and compositions of microbial communities that participate in the sulfur cycle under the dynamic environmental conditions in a local sewerage system. To accomplish this, microbial community compositions were assessed using 454 high-throughput sequencing (16S rDNA) combined with dsrB gene-based denaturing gradient gel electrophoresis. The results indicated that a higher diversity of microbial species was present at locations in sewers with high concentrations of H2S. Actinobacteria and Proteobacteria were dominant in the sewerage system, while Actinobacteria alone were dominant in regions with high concentrations of H2S. Specifically, the unique operational taxonomic units could aid to characterize the distinct microbial communities within a sewerage manhole. The proportion of sulfate-reducing bacteria, each sulfur-oxidizing bacteria (SOB) were strongly correlated with the liquid parameters (DO, ORP, COD, Sulfide, NH3-N), while the Mycobacterium and Acidophilic SOB (M&A) was strongly correlated with gaseous factors within the sewer, such as H2S, CH4, and CO. Identifying the distributions and proportions of critical microbial communities within sewerage systems could provide insights into how the microbial sulfur cycle is affected by the dynamic environmental conditions that exist in sewers and might be useful for explaining the potential sewerage problems. PMID:28261160

  15. Biochar affects soil organic matter cycling and microbial functions but does not alter microbial community structure in a paddy soil.

    PubMed

    Tian, Jing; Wang, Jingyuan; Dippold, Michaela; Gao, Yang; Blagodatskaya, Evgenia; Kuzyakov, Yakov

    2016-06-15

    The application of biochar (BC) in conjunction with mineral fertilizers is one of the most promising management practices recommended to improve soil quality. However, the interactive mechanisms of BC and mineral fertilizer addition affecting microbial communities and functions associated with soil organic matter (SOM) cycling are poorly understood. We investigated the SOM in physical and chemical fractions, microbial community structure (using phospholipid fatty acid analysis, PLFA) and functions (by analyzing enzymes involved in C and N cycling and Biolog) in a 6-year field experiment with BC and NPK amendment. BC application increased total soil C and particulate organic C for 47.4-50.4% and 63.7-74.6%, respectively. The effects of BC on the microbial community and C-cycling enzymes were dependent on fertilization. Addition of BC alone did not change the microbial community compared with the control, but altered the microbial community structure in conjunction with NPK fertilization. SOM fractions accounted for 55% of the variance in the PLFA-related microbial community structure. The particulate organic N explained the largest variation in the microbial community structure. Microbial metabolic activity strongly increased after BC addition, particularly the utilization of amino acids and amines due to an increase in the activity of proteolytic (l-leucine aminopeptidase) enzymes. These results indicate that microorganisms start to mine N from the SOM to compensate for high C:N ratios after BC application, which consequently accelerate cycling of stable N. Concluding, BC in combination with NPK fertilizer application strongly affected microbial community composition and functions, which consequently influenced SOM cycling.

  16. Functionally stable and phylogenetically diverse microbial enrichments from microbial fuel cells during wastewater treatment.

    PubMed

    Ishii, Shun'ichi; Suzuki, Shino; Norden-Krichmar, Trina M; Nealson, Kenneth H; Sekiguchi, Yuji; Gorby, Yuri A; Bretschger, Orianna

    2012-01-01

    Microbial fuel cells (MFCs) are devices that exploit microorganisms as biocatalysts to recover energy from organic matter in the form of electricity. One of the goals of MFC research is to develop the technology for cost-effective wastewater treatment. However, before practical MFC applications are implemented it is important to gain fundamental knowledge about long-term system performance, reproducibility, and the formation and maintenance of functionally-stable microbial communities. Here we report findings from a MFC operated for over 300 days using only primary clarifier effluent collected from a municipal wastewater treatment plant as the microbial resource and substrate. The system was operated in a repeat-batch mode, where the reactor solution was replaced once every two weeks with new primary effluent that consisted of different microbial and chemical compositions with every batch exchange. The turbidity of the primary clarifier effluent solution notably decreased, and 97% of biological oxygen demand (BOD) was removed after an 8-13 day residence time for each batch cycle. On average, the limiting current density was 1000 mA/m(2), the maximum power density was 13 mW/m(2), and coulombic efficiency was 25%. Interestingly, the electrochemical performance and BOD removal rates were very reproducible throughout MFC operation regardless of the sample variability associated with each wastewater exchange. While MFC performance was very reproducible, the phylogenetic analyses of anode-associated electricity-generating biofilms showed that the microbial populations temporally fluctuated and maintained a high biodiversity throughout the year-long experiment. These results suggest that MFC communities are both self-selecting and self-optimizing, thereby able to develop and maintain functional stability regardless of fluctuations in carbon source(s) and regular introduction of microbial competitors. These results contribute significantly toward the practical application

  17. Mitochondrial dynamics during cell cycling.

    PubMed

    Horbay, Rostyslav; Bilyy, Rostyslav

    2016-12-01

    Mitochondria are the cell's power plant that must be in a proper functional state in order to produce the energy necessary for basic cellular functions, such as proliferation. Mitochondria are 'dynamic' in that they are constantly undergoing fission and fusion to remain in a functional state throughout the cell cycle, as well as during other vital processes such as energy supply, cellular respiration and programmed cell death. The mitochondrial fission/fusion machinery is involved in generating young mitochondria, while eliminating old, damaged and non-repairable ones. As a result, the organelles change in shape, size and number throughout the cell cycle. Such precise and accurate balance is maintained by the cytoskeletal transporting system via microtubules, which deliver the mitochondrion from one location to another. During the gap phases G1 and G2, mitochondria form an interconnected network, whereas in mitosis and S-phase fragmentation of the mitochondrial network will take place. However, such balance is lost during neoplastic transformation and autoimmune disorders. Several proteins, such as Drp1, Fis1, Kif-family proteins, Opa1, Bax and mitofusins change in activity and might link the mitochondrial fission/fusion events with processes such as alteration of mitochondrial membrane potential, apoptosis, necrosis, cell cycle arrest, and malignant growth. All this indicates how vital proper functioning of mitochondria is in maintaining cell integrity and preventing carcinogenesis.

  18. Stable isotope approaches for tracking C cycling and function in microbial communities

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pett-Ridge, J.

    2008-12-01

    Identifying the microorganisms responsible for specific processes in C cycling remains a major challenge in environmental microbiology, one that requires integration of multiple techniques. Stable isotope probing, or SIP, has come to represent a variety of powerful approaches that allow simultaneous identification of identity and function in microbial communities. Bulk methods such as DNA/RNA-SIP and PLFA-SIP are well developed and allow tracking of a multitude of C substrates (acetate, cellulose, CH4, CO2, and plant litter) into specific microbial consumers. However, to understand the spatio-temporal context of may key C transformations and microbial interactions, new imaging technologies are needed to analyze processes and properties of macromolecule complexes, microbes, plant root cells, soil (micro)aggregates, phytoplankton and marine snow as they undergoes formation and decomposition. New and sensitive in situ approaches include NanoSIMS single cell analysis, isotope arrays, and combinations of immuno- or FISH labeling with high resolution isotope imaging. Recent work illustrates how these powerful new techniques use targeted stable isotope probing to measure biological, physical and chemical processes and can be used in soil systems to study microbial mats or rhizosphere interactions. In both terrestrial and aquatic systems, they allow us to directly link C and other nutrient metabolism at the organismal level. Lastly, these new aproaches may be of great use in the study of trophic cascades and metabolic networks. While cross-feeding is often thought of as a confounding effect in SIP-type studies, with fine scale temporal sampling and FISH-SIMS analysis, we have the opportunity trace C flows through microbial foodwebs and to their eventual fate in stabilized organic-mineral complexes.

  19. Metagenomic and lipid analyses reveal a diel cycle in a hypersaline microbial ecosystem

    PubMed Central

    Andrade, Karen; Logemann, Jörn; Heidelberg, Karla B; Emerson, Joanne B; Comolli, Luis R; Hug, Laura A; Probst, Alexander J; Keillar, Angus; Thomas, Brian C; Miller, Christopher S; Allen, Eric E; Moreau, John W; Brocks, Jochen J; Banfield, Jillian F

    2015-01-01

    Marine microbial communities experience daily fluctuations in light and temperature that can have important ramifications for carbon and nutrient cycling. Elucidation of such short time scale community-wide dynamics is hindered by system complexity. Hypersaline aquatic environments have lower species richness than marine environments and can be well-defined spatially, hence they provide a model system for diel cycle analysis. We conducted a 3-day time series experiment in a well-defined pool in hypersaline Lake Tyrrell, Australia. Microbial communities were tracked by combining cultivation-independent lipidomic, metagenomic and microscopy methods. The ratio of total bacterial to archaeal core lipids in the planktonic community increased by up to 58% during daylight hours and decreased by up to 32% overnight. However, total organism abundances remained relatively consistent over 3 days. Metagenomic analysis of the planktonic community composition, resolved at the genome level, showed dominance by Haloquadratum species and six uncultured members of the Halobacteriaceae. The post 0.8 μm filtrate contained six different nanohaloarchaeal types, three of which have not been identified previously, and cryo-transmission electron microscopy imaging confirmed the presence of small cells. Notably, these nano-sized archaea showed a strong diel cycle, with a pronounced increase in relative abundance over the night periods. We detected no eukaryotic algae or other photosynthetic primary producers, suggesting that carbon resources may derive from patchily distributed microbial mats at the sediment-water interface or from surrounding land. Results show the operation of a strong community-level diel cycle, probably driven by interconnected temperature, light abundance, dissolved oxygen concentration and nutrient flux effects. PMID:25918833

  20. Cell cycle regulation and regeneration.

    PubMed

    Heber-Katz, Ellen; Zhang, Yong; Bedelbaeva, Khamila; Song, Fengyu; Chen, Xiaoping; Stocum, David L

    2013-01-01

    Regeneration of ear punch holes in the MRL mouse and amputated limbs of the axolotl show a number of similarities. A large proportion of the fibroblasts of the uninjured MRL mouse ear are arrested in G2 of the cell cycle, and enter nerve-dependent mitosis after injury to form a ring-shaped blastema that regenerates the ear tissue. Multiple cell types contribute to the establishment of the regeneration blastema of the urodele limb by dedifferentiation, and there is substantial reason to believe that the cells of this early blastema are also arrested in G2, and enter mitosis under the influence of nerve-dependent factors supplied by the apical epidermal cap. Molecular analysis reveals other parallels, such as; (1) the upregulation of Evi5, a centrosomal protein that prevents mitosis by stabilizing Emi1, a protein that inhibits the degradation of cyclins by the anaphase promoting complex and (2) the expression of sodium channels by the epidermis. A central feature in the entry into the cell cycle by MRL ear fibroblasts is a natural downregulation of p21, and knockout of p21 in wild-type mice confers regenerative capacity on non-regenerating ear tissue. Whether the same is true for entry into the cell cycle in regenerating urodele limbs is presently unknown.

  1. Virus manipulation of cell cycle.

    PubMed

    Nascimento, R; Costa, H; Parkhouse, R M E

    2012-07-01

    Viruses depend on host cell resources for replication and access to those resources may be limited to a particular phase of the cell cycle. Thus manipulation of cell cycle is a commonly employed strategy of viruses for achieving a favorable cellular environment. For example, viruses capable of infecting nondividing cells induce S phase in order to activate the host DNA replication machinery and provide the nucleotide triphosphates necessary for viral DNA replication (Flemington in J Virol 75:4475-4481, 2001; Sullivan and Pipas in Microbiol Mol Biol Rev 66:179-202, 2002). Viruses have developed several strategies to subvert the cell cycle by association with cyclin and cyclin-dependent kinase complexes and molecules that regulate their activity. Viruses tend to act on cellular proteins involved in a network of interactions in a way that minimal protein-protein interactions lead to a major effect. The complex and interactive nature of intracellular signaling pathways controlling cell division affords many opportunities for virus manipulation strategies. Taking the maxim "Set a thief to catch a thief" as a counter strategy, however, provides us with the very same virus evasion strategies as "ready-made tools" for the development of novel antivirus therapeutics. The most obvious are attenuated virus vaccines with critical evasion genes deleted. Similarly, vaccines against viruses causing cancer are now being successfully developed. Finally, as viruses have been playing chess with our cell biology and immune responses for millions of years, the study of their evasion strategies will also undoubtedly reveal new control mechanisms and their corresponding cellular intracellular signaling pathways.

  2. Coastal microbial fuel cell: scaling laws and systems

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bandyopadhyay, Promode R.; McNeilly, Frank J.; Thivierge, Daniel P.; Fredette, Albert R.

    2006-05-01

    Microbes, like Geobacters, have inhabited the seafloors around the world since the early days of earth. Such regions are anaerobic and they gain energy by using the widely prevalent iron oxides and organic matters. Because they appear to colonize conducting surfaces that act as sinks of electrons, microbial fuel cells have been shown to convert organic matter to electricity. A microbial fuel cell system has been deployed in Narragansett Bay in Newport, Rhode Island for a year. Currently, the cathode and anode areas are of the order of that of a small wind mill. Measurements have been carried out to determine the marine scaling laws of power harvesting in passive benthic microbial fuel cells. The focus has been on the ocean engineering aspects such as marine scaling laws and the integration of the biochemical and the electronic systems. The characteristics examined are: the relationship of electrode surface area and power produced, the stabilization rates of ionic paths, that is, the effects of location depth of cathodes on stabilization after deployment, the effects of solar and lunar cycles in the Narragansett Bay on the dynamic components of power produced, and the hysteresis effects between periods of active power harvesting and dormancy; the effects of 'on sediment surface' versus 'in sediment' anode deployment have been examined for smaller electrode areas so far. A capacitance model of power consumption and harvesting has been proposed for the marine environment. It is assumed that the primordial benthic microbe laden layer of the earth acts like a giant capacitor. In the microbial fuel cell, this charged benthic layer acts in series with a smaller constant voltage DC power source. This giant benthic capacitance is a result of untapped accumulated charge from the microbes while the DC source originates from the real-time production due to the microbes. Finally, the microbial fuel cell is integrated with a power conversion system to intermittently energize a

  3. [Advances in microbial solar cells--A review].

    PubMed

    Guo, Xiaoyun; Yu, Changping; Zheng, Tianling

    2015-08-04

    The energy crisis has become one of the major problems hindering the development of the world. The emergence of microbial fuel cells provides a new solution to the energy crisis. Microbial solar cells, integrating photosynthetic organisms such as plants and microalgae into microbial fuel cells, can convert solar energy into electrical energy. Microbial solar cell has steady electric energy, and broad application prospects in wastewater treatment, biodiesel processing and intermediate metabolites production. Here we reviewed recent progress of microbial solar cells from the perspective of the role of photosynthetic organisms in microbial fuel cells, based on a vast amount of literature, and discussed their advantages and deficiency. At last, brief analysis of the facing problems and research needs of microbial fuel cells are undertaken. This work was expected to be beneficial for the application of the microbial solar cells technology.

  4. Autonomous, Retrievable, Deep Sea Microbial Fuel Cell

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Richter, K.

    2014-12-01

    Microbial fuel cells (MFCs) work by providing bacteria in anaerobic sediments with an electron acceptor (anode) that stimulates metabolism of organic matter. The buried anode is connected via control circuitry to a cathode exposed to oxygen in the overlying water. During metabolism, bacteria release hydrogen ions into the sediment and transfer electrons extra-cellularly to the anode, which eventually reduce dissolved oxygen at the cathode, forming water. The open circuit voltage is approximately 0.8 v. The voltage between electrodes is operationally kept at 0.4 v with a potentiastat. The current is chiefly limited by the rate of microbial metabolism at the anode. The Office of Naval Research has encouraged development of microbial fuel cells in the marine environment at a number of academic and naval institutions. Earlier work in shallow sediments of San Diego Bay showed that the most important environmental parameters that control fuel cell power output in San Diego Bay were total organic carbon in the sediment and seasonal water temperature. Current MFC work at SPAWAR includes extension of microbial fuel cell tests to the deep sea environment (>1000 m) and, in parallel, testing microbial fuel cells in the laboratory under deep sea conditions. One question we are asking is whether MFC power output from deep water sediments repressurized and chilled in the laboratory comparable to those measured in situ. If yes, mapping the power potential of deep sea sediments may be made much easier, requiring sediment grabs and lab tests rather than deployment and retrieval of fuel cells. Another question we are asking is whether in situ temperature and total organic carbon in the deep sea sediment can predict MFC power. If yes, then we can make use of the large collection of publicly available, deep sea oceanographic measurements to make these predictions, foregoing expensive work at sea. These regressions will be compared to those derived from shallow water measurements.

  5. Nitrogen cycling and water pulses in semiarid grasslands: Are microbial and plant processes temporarily asynchronous?

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Precipitation pulses in arid ecosystems can lead to temporal asynchrony in microbial and plant processing of nitrogen (N) during drying/wetting cycles causing increased N loss. In contrast, more consistent availability of soil moisture in mesic ecosystems can synchronize microbial and plant processe...

  6. Interval scanning photomicrography of microbial cell populations.

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Casida, L. E., Jr.

    1972-01-01

    A single reproducible area of the preparation in a fixed focal plane is photographically scanned at intervals during incubation. The procedure can be used for evaluating the aerobic or anaerobic growth of many microbial cells simultaneously within a population. In addition, the microscope is not restricted to the viewing of any one microculture preparation, since the slide cultures are incubated separately from the microscope.

  7. Single-cell transcriptomics for microbial eukaryotes.

    PubMed

    Kolisko, Martin; Boscaro, Vittorio; Burki, Fabien; Lynn, Denis H; Keeling, Patrick J

    2014-11-17

    One of the greatest hindrances to a comprehensive understanding of microbial genomics, cell biology, ecology, and evolution is that most microbial life is not in culture. Solutions to this problem have mainly focused on whole-community surveys like metagenomics, but these analyses inevitably loose information and present particular challenges for eukaryotes, which are relatively rare and possess large, gene-sparse genomes. Single-cell analyses present an alternative solution that allows for specific species to be targeted, while retaining information on cellular identity, morphology, and partitioning of activities within microbial communities. Single-cell transcriptomics, pioneered in medical research, offers particular potential advantages for uncultivated eukaryotes, but the efficiency and biases have not been tested. Here we describe a simple and reproducible method for single-cell transcriptomics using manually isolated cells from five model ciliate species; we examine impacts of amplification bias and contamination, and compare the efficacy of gene discovery to traditional culture-based transcriptomics. Gene discovery using single-cell transcriptomes was found to be comparable to mass-culture methods, suggesting single-cell transcriptomics is an efficient entry point into genomic data from the vast majority of eukaryotic biodiversity.

  8. Microbial fuel cells for biosensor applications.

    PubMed

    Yang, Huijia; Zhou, Minghua; Liu, Mengmeng; Yang, Weilu; Gu, Tingyue

    2015-12-01

    Microbial fuel cells (MFCs) face major hurdles for real-world applications as power generators with the exception of powering small sensor devices. Despite tremendous improvements made in the last two decades, MFCs are still too expensive to build and operate and their power output is still too small. In view of this, in recently years, intensive researches have been carried out to expand the applications into other areas such as acid and alkali production, bioremediation of aquatic sediments, desalination and biosensors. Unlike power applications, MFC sensors have the immediate prospect to be practical. This review covers the latest developments in various proposed biosensor applications using MFCs including monitoring microbial activity, testing biochemical oxygen demand, detection of toxicants and detection of microbial biofilms that cause biocorrosion.

  9. Reduced Gas Cycling in Microbial Mats: Implications for Early Earth

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Hoehler, Tori M.; Bebout, Brad M.; DesMarais, David J.; DeVincenzi, Donald L. (Technical Monitor)

    2000-01-01

    For more than half the history of life on Earth, biological productivity was dominated by photosynthetic microbial mats. During this time, mats served as the preeminent biological influence on earth's surface and atmospheric chemistry and also as the primary crucible for microbial evolution. We find that modern analogs of these ancient mat communities generate substantial quantities of hydrogen, carbon monoxide, and methane. Escape of these gases from the biosphere would contribute strongly to atmospheric evolution and potentially to the net oxidation of earth's surface; sequestration within the biosphere carries equally important implications for the structure, function, and evolution of anaerobic microbial communities within the context of mat biology.

  10. The microbial arsenic cycle in Mono Lake, California.

    PubMed

    Oremland, Ronald S; Stolz, John F; Hollibaugh, James T

    2004-04-01

    Significant concentrations of dissolved inorganic arsenic can be found in the waters of a number of lakes located in the western USA and in other water bodies around the world. These lakes are often situated in arid, volcanic terrain. The highest concentrations of arsenic occur in hypersaline, closed basin soda lakes and their remnant brines. Although arsenic is a well-known toxicant to eukaryotes and prokaryotes alike, some prokaryotes have evolved biochemical mechanisms to exploit arsenic oxyanions (i.e., arsenate and arsenite); they can use them either as an electron acceptor for anaerobic respiration (arsenate), or as an electron donor (arsenite) to support chemoautotrophic fixation of CO(2) into cell carbon. Unlike in freshwater or marine ecosystems, these processes may assume quantitative significance with respect to the carbon cycle in arsenic-rich soda lakes. For the past several years our research has focused on the occurrence and biogeochemical manifestations of these processes in Mono Lake, a particularly arsenic-rich environment. Herein we review some of our findings concerning the biogeochemical arsenic cycle in this lake, with the hope that it may broaden the understanding of the influence of microorganisms upon the speciation of arsenic in more common, less "extreme" environments, such as drinking water aquifers.

  11. The microbial arsenic cycle in Mono Lake, California

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Oremland, Ronald S.; Stolz, John F.; Hollibaugh, James T.

    2004-01-01

    Significant concentrations of dissolved inorganic arsenic can be found in the waters of a number of lakes located in the western USA and in other water bodies around the world. These lakes are often situated in arid, volcanic terrain. The highest concentrations of arsenic occur in hypersaline, closed basin soda lakes and their remnant brines. Although arsenic is a well-known toxicant to eukaryotes and prokaryotes alike, some prokaryotes have evolved biochemical mechanisms to exploit arsenic oxyanions (i.e., arsenate and arsenite); they can use them either as an electron acceptor for anaerobic respiration (arsenate), or as an electron donor (arsenite) to support chemoautotrophic fixation of CO2 into cell carbon. Unlike in freshwater or marine ecosystems, these processes may assume quantitative significance with respect to the carbon cycle in arsenic-rich soda lakes. For the past several years our research has focused on the occurrence and biogeochemical manifestations of these processes in Mono Lake, a particularly arsenic-rich environment. Herein we review some of our findings concerning the biogeochemical arsenic cycle in this lake, with the hope that it may broaden the understanding of the influence of microorganisms upon the speciation of arsenic in more common, less “extreme” environments, such as drinking water aquifers.

  12. Adjustment of microbial nitrogen use efficiency to carbon:nitrogen imbalances regulates soil nitrogen cycling

    PubMed Central

    Mooshammer, Maria; Wanek, Wolfgang; Hämmerle, Ieda; Fuchslueger, Lucia; Hofhansl, Florian; Knoltsch, Anna; Schnecker, Jörg; Takriti, Mounir; Watzka, Margarete; Wild, Birgit; Keiblinger, Katharina M; Zechmeister-Boltenstern, Sophie; Richter, Andreas

    2014-01-01

    Microbial nitrogen use efficiency (NUE) describes the partitioning of organic N taken up between growth and the release of inorganic N to the environment (that is, N mineralization), and is thus central to our understanding of N cycling. Here we report empirical evidence that microbial decomposer communities in soil and plant litter regulate their NUE. We find that microbes retain most immobilized organic N (high NUE), when they are N limited, resulting in low N mineralization. However, when the metabolic control of microbial decomposers switches from N to C limitation, they release an increasing fraction of organic N as ammonium (low NUE). We conclude that the regulation of NUE is an essential strategy of microbial communities to cope with resource imbalances, independent of the regulation of microbial carbon use efficiency, with significant effects on terrestrial N cycling. PMID:24739236

  13. Membrane fluidity sensoring microbial fuel cell.

    PubMed

    Choi, Youngjin; Jung, Eunkyoung; Kim, Sunghyun; Jung, Seunho

    2003-04-01

    A study has been performed to examine the effect of temperature and ethanolic stresses on the coulombic efficiency of a microbial fuel cell. The conventional-type fuel cell containing Gram-negative bacteria, Proteus vulgaris, was investigated as a model system. From current output measurements, it was found that the coulombic yields were altered by environmental stresses such as temperature shock or ethanol treatment to the bacteria. While high-temperature or ethanolic shock led to a remarkable decrement in coulombic output, the low-temperature shock induced a slight increase in microbial fuel cell efficiency. These results indicate that the membrane fluidity is affected considerably by environmental stress, which in turn affects the electron transfer process through the bacterial cell membrane to and from the electrode. This interpretation was confirmed by the cyclic voltammetric study of a mediator on an electrode surface modified with the lipids extracted from the membrane of P. vulgaris under the given stress. Markedly different electrochemical behaviors were observed depending on the environmental stress. A reciprocal relationship between coulomb output and the ratio of saturation/unsaturation of fatty acids has been observed. This is the first report, to our knowledge, that the structural adaptation of membrane fatty acids in response to the environmental shock can regulate the coulombic efficiency of a microbial fuel cell.

  14. Microbially mediated transformations of phosphorus in the sea: new views of an old cycle.

    PubMed

    Karl, David M

    2014-01-01

    Phosphorus (P) is a required element for life. Its various chemical forms are found throughout the lithosphere and hydrosphere, where they are acted on by numerous abiotic and biotic processes collectively referred to as the P cycle. In the sea, microorganisms are primarily responsible for P assimilation and remineralization, including recently discovered P reduction-oxidation bioenergetic processes that add new complexity to the marine microbial P cycle. Human-induced enhancement of the global P cycle via mining of phosphate-bearing rock will likely influence the pace of P-cycle dynamics, especially in coastal marine habitats. The inextricable link between the P cycle and cycles of other bioelements predicts future impacts on, for example, nitrogen fixation and carbon dioxide sequestration. Additional laboratory and field research is required to build a comprehensive understanding of the marine microbial P cycle.

  15. From microbial communities to cells

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Margulis, L.

    1985-01-01

    The eukraotic cell, the unit of structure of protoctists, plants, fungi, and animals, is not at all homologous to prokaryotic cells. Instead the eukaryotic cell is homologous to communities of microorganisms such as those of the sulfuretum. This research is based on the hypothesis that at least four different interacting community members entered the original associations that, when stabilized, led to the emergence of eukaryotic cells. These are: (1) host nucleocytoplasm (thermoplasma like archaebacteria); (2) mitochrondria (paracoccus or bdellovibryo like respiring bacteria; and (3) plastids (cyanobacteria) and undulipodia. Tubulin like protein was found in the free living spirochete Spirochaeta bajacaliforniensis and in several other spirochetes. The amino acid sequence was to see if the spirochete protein is homologous to the tubulin of undulipodial and mitotic spindle microtubules.

  16. Microbial Sulfur Cycling in an Acid Mine Lake

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bernier, L.; Warren, L. A.

    2004-12-01

    Geochemical dynamics of a tailings impacted lake in Northern Ontario were investigated over a three-year period, in which active pyrrhotite slurry disposal was initiated in year two. A strong seasonal trend of decreasing epilimnetic pH with significant diurnal acid production, pre-, during and post slurry deposition was observed with high rates observed compared to pre-slurry. Slurry deposition occurred at the surface of the lake and acted as a reaction stimulant for acid generation. Over the diurnal timescale investigated, the highest rates of acid production occurred not at the lake surface but within the metaliminetic region of the lake. This region was exemplified by strong decreasing oxygen gradients, and thus observed high rates of acid generation are more consistent with microbial pathways of sulfur oxidation than with abiotic, oxygen catalyzed pathways. Consistent with microbial catalysis, metalimnetic rates of acid generation were highest during June and July when microbial populations and metabolic rates were maximal. These results indicate that microbial oxidation of sulfur species play a major role in acid generation in this system. Further, observed rates of acid generation exceed those predicted by published abiotic rates of pyrrhotite oxidation, but are consistent with literature estimates of acid generation catalyzed by microbial activity. Acidithiobacilli accounted for up to 50% of the microbial community pre slurry, but were absent post slurry deposition. These results are the first to demonstrate quantitatively that microbial sulfur oxidation can play a predominant role in acid generation within mine tailings impacted systems. They further highlight the need to evaluate the more complex pathways by which microorganisms process sulfur as the conditions, controls and process rates differ from those observed for abiotic reactions.

  17. Wireless sensors powered by microbial fuel cells.

    PubMed

    Shantaram, Avinash; Beyenal, Haluk; Raajan, Raaja; Veluchamy, Angathevar; Lewandowski, Zbigniew

    2005-07-01

    Monitoring parameters characterizing water quality, such as temperature, pH, and concentrations of heavy metals in natural waters, is often followed by transmitting the data to remote receivers using telemetry systems. Such systems are commonly powered by batteries, which can be inconvenient at times because batteries have a limited lifetime and must be recharged or replaced periodically to ensure that sufficient energy is available to power the electronics. To avoid these inconveniences, a microbial fuel cell was designed to power electrochemical sensors and small telemetry systems to transmit the data acquired by the sensors to remote receivers. The microbial fuel cell was combined with low-power, high-efficiency electronic circuitry providing a stable power source for wireless data transmission. To generate enough power for the telemetry system, energy produced by the microbial fuel cell was stored in a capacitor and used in short bursts when needed. Since commercial electronic circuits require a minimum 3.3 V input and our cell was able to deliver a maximum of 2.1 V, a DC-DC converter was used to boost the potential. The DC-DC converter powered a transmitter, which gathered the data from the sensor and transmitted it wirelessly to a remote receiver. To demonstrate the utility of the system, temporal variations in temperature were measured, and the data were wirelessly transmitted to a remote receiver.

  18. [Electricity production from surplus sludge using microbial fuel cells].

    PubMed

    Jia, Bin; Liu, Zhi-Hua; Li, Xiao-Ming; Yang, Yong-Lin; Yang, Qi; Zeng, Guang-Ming; Liu, Yi-Lin; Liu, Qian-Qian; Zheng, Shi-Wen

    2009-04-15

    A single-chamber and membrane-less microbial fuel cells were successfully started up using anaerobic sludge as inoculums without any chemical substance for 20 d. The electricity generation of the microbial fuel cell using surplus sludge as fuel and the change of substrate were investigated. The results showed that the obtained maximum voltage and power density were 495 mV and 44 mW x m(-2) (fixed 1,000 Omega), and the internal resistance was about 300 Omega during steady state. In a cycle, the removal efficiency of SS and VSS were 27.3% and 28.7%, pH was 6.5-8.0. In addition, the COD increased from 617 mg x L(-1) to 1,150 mg x L(-1) and decreased afterwards with time. The change of glucose was similar to that of COD, glucose increased from 47 mg x L(-1) to 60 mg x L(-1) and decreased afterwards with time. Consequently, the microbial fuel cell can transform chemical energy of surplus sludge into the cleanest electrical energy, and it provides a new way of sludge recycling.

  19. Exoelectrogenic bacteria that power microbial fuel cells.

    PubMed

    Logan, Bruce E

    2009-05-01

    There has been an increase in recent years in the number of reports of microorganisms that can generate electrical current in microbial fuel cells. Although many new strains have been identified, few strains individually produce power densities as high as strains from mixed communities. Enriched anodic biofilms have generated power densities as high as 6.9 W per m(2) (projected anode area), and therefore are approaching theoretical limits. To understand bacterial versatility in mechanisms used for current generation, this Progress article explores the underlying reasons for exocellular electron transfer, including cellular respiration and possible cell-cell communication.

  20. Microbial fuel cell with improved anode

    DOEpatents

    Borole, Abhijeet P.

    2010-04-13

    The present invention relates to a method for preparing a microbial fuel cell, wherein the method includes: (i) inoculating an anodic liquid medium in contact with an anode of the microbial fuel cell with one or more types of microorganisms capable of functioning by an exoelectrogenic mechanism; (ii) establishing a biofilm of the microorganisms on and/or within the anode along with a substantial absence of planktonic forms of the microorganisms by substantial removal of the planktonic microorganisms during forced flow and recirculation conditions of the anodic liquid medium; and (iii) subjecting the microorganisms of the biofilm to a growth stage by incorporating one or more carbon-containing nutritive compounds in the anodic liquid medium during biofilm formation or after biofilm formation on the anode has been established.

  1. "Constructing" the Cell Cycle in 3D

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Koc, Isil; Turan, Merve

    2012-01-01

    The cycle of duplication and division, known as the "cell cycle," is the essential mechanism by which all living organisms reproduce. This activity allows students to develop an understanding of the main events that occur during the typical eukaryotic cell cycle mostly in the process of mitotic phase that divides the duplicated genetic material…

  2. Nitrogen cycling and water pulses in semiarid grasslands: are microbial and plant processes temporally asynchronous?

    PubMed

    Dijkstra, Feike A; Augustine, David J; Brewer, Paul; von Fischer, Joseph C

    2012-11-01

    Precipitation pulses in arid ecosystems can lead to temporal asynchrony in microbial and plant processing of nitrogen (N) during drying/wetting cycles causing increased N loss. In contrast, more consistent availability of soil moisture in mesic ecosystems can synchronize microbial and plant processes during the growing season, thus minimizing N loss. We tested whether microbial N cycling is asynchronous with plant N uptake in a semiarid grassland. Using (15)N tracers, we compared rates of N cycling by microbes and N uptake by plants after water pulses of 1 and 2 cm to rates in control plots without a water pulse. Microbial N immobilization, gross N mineralization, and nitrification dramatically increased 1-3 days after the water pulses, with greatest responses after the 2-cm pulse. In contrast, plant N uptake increased more after the 1-cm than after the 2-cm pulse. Both microbial and plant responses reverted to control levels within 10 days, indicating that both microbial and plant responses were short lived. Thus, microbial and plant processes were temporally synchronous following a water pulse in this semiarid grassland, but the magnitude of the pulse substantially influenced whether plants or microbes were more effective in acquiring N. Furthermore, N loss increased after both small and large water pulses (as shown by a decrease in total (15)N recovery), indicating that changes in precipitation event sizes with future climate change could exacerbate N losses from semiarid ecosystems.

  3. Sulfur Cycling and Microbial Community Structure in Cave Environment: some geomicrobiological aspects

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gulecal, Y.; Temel, M.

    2013-12-01

    In the last decade, cave microbiology has emerged as a growing interdisciplinary field. Because of caves provides a unique subsurface environment for the exploration of microbial life and their roles on biogeochemical cycling under extreme condition. Sulfidic caves form in carbonate rocks where sulfide-rich waters interact with oxygen at the water table or at subterranean springs (1). Terrestrial sulfidic caves and springs are abundant and diverse, as assessed by efforts to characterize cave microbial ecosystems and to understand large scale geochemical processes (2). In this study we examined the geochemical features, microbial community and capacity of sulfur cycling in sulfidic cave ( Kaklik Cave, Turkey ) and its two hot springs. Pyrosequencing were used to understand bacterial diversity and community structure in this study area with contrasting hydrochemial and geological properties. Environmental nucleic acids were extracted, and PCR-directed screens reveal the presence or absence of functional genes, indicating genetic capacity for sulfur cycling. The microbial community displayed a high level of microbial diversity, representing 22 phylum of the Bacteria and 5 phylum of the Archaea. Our results provide a comparative view of the microbial communities and processes involved in sulfur cycling in sulfidic cave environments. 1- Macalady et al. (2007) Extremely acidic, pendulous cave wall biofilms from the Frasassi cave system, Italy. Env.Mic. 9(6), 1402-1414 2- Rossmassler et al. Drivers of epsilonproteobacterial community composition in sulfidic caves and springs.

  4. Cytofluorometric assessment of cell cycle progression.

    PubMed

    Vitale, Ilio; Jemaà, Mohamed; Galluzzi, Lorenzo; Metivier, Didier; Castedo, Maria; Kroemer, Guido

    2013-01-01

    One of the most prominent features of cellular senescence, a stress response that prevents the propagation of cells that have accumulated potentially oncogenic alterations, is a permanent loss of proliferative potential. Thus, at odds with quiescent cells, which resume proliferation when stimulated to do so, senescent cells cannot proceed through the cell cycle even in the presence of mitogenic factors. Here, we describe a set of cytofluorometric techniques for studying how chemical and/or physical stimuli alter the cell cycle in vitro, in both qualitative and quantitative terms. Taken together, these methods allow for the identification of bona fide cytostatic effects as well as for a refined characterization of cell cycle distributions, providing information on proliferation, DNA content as well as on the presence of cell cycle phase-specific markers. At the end of the chapter, a set of guidelines is offered to assist researchers that approach the study of the cell cycle with the interpretation of results.

  5. Recent advances in amino acid production by microbial cells.

    PubMed

    Hirasawa, Takashi; Shimizu, Hiroshi

    2016-12-01

    Amino acids have been utilized for the production of foods, animal feeds and pharmaceuticals. After the discovery of the glutamic acid-producing bacterium Corynebacterium glutamicum by Japanese researchers, the production of amino acids, which are primary metabolites, has been achieved using various microbial cells as hosts. Recently, metabolic engineering studies on the rational design of amino acid-producing microbial cells have been successfully conducted. Moreover, the technology of systems biology has been applied to metabolic engineering for the creation of amino acid-producing microbial cells. Currently, new technologies including synthetic biology, single-cell analysis, and evolutionary engineering have been utilized to create amino acid-producing microbial cells. In addition, useful compounds from amino acids have been produced by microbial cells. Here, current researches into the metabolic engineering of microbial cells toward production of amino acids and amino acid-related compounds are reviewed.

  6. Microbial mediation of biogeochemical cycles revealed by simulation of global changes with soil transplant and cropping.

    PubMed

    Zhao, Mengxin; Xue, Kai; Wang, Feng; Liu, Shanshan; Bai, Shijie; Sun, Bo; Zhou, Jizhong; Yang, Yunfeng

    2014-10-01

    Despite microbes' key roles in driving biogeochemical cycles, the mechanism of microbe-mediated feedbacks to global changes remains elusive. Recently, soil transplant has been successfully established as a proxy to simulate climate changes, as the current trend of global warming coherently causes range shifts toward higher latitudes. Four years after southward soil transplant over large transects in China, we found that microbial functional diversity was increased, in addition to concurrent changes in microbial biomass, soil nutrient content and functional processes involved in the nitrogen cycle. However, soil transplant effects could be overridden by maize cropping, which was attributed to a negative interaction. Strikingly, abundances of nitrogen and carbon cycle genes were increased by these field experiments simulating global change, coinciding with higher soil nitrification potential and carbon dioxide (CO2) efflux. Further investigation revealed strong correlations between carbon cycle genes and CO2 efflux in bare soil but not cropped soil, and between nitrogen cycle genes and nitrification. These findings suggest that changes of soil carbon and nitrogen cycles by soil transplant and cropping were predictable by measuring microbial functional potentials, contributing to a better mechanistic understanding of these soil functional processes and suggesting a potential to incorporate microbial communities in greenhouse gas emission modeling.

  7. Microbial mediation of biogeochemical cycles revealed by simulation of global changes with soil transplant and cropping

    PubMed Central

    Zhao, Mengxin; Xue, Kai; Wang, Feng; Liu, Shanshan; Bai, Shijie; Sun, Bo; Zhou, Jizhong; Yang, Yunfeng

    2014-01-01

    Despite microbes' key roles in driving biogeochemical cycles, the mechanism of microbe-mediated feedbacks to global changes remains elusive. Recently, soil transplant has been successfully established as a proxy to simulate climate changes, as the current trend of global warming coherently causes range shifts toward higher latitudes. Four years after southward soil transplant over large transects in China, we found that microbial functional diversity was increased, in addition to concurrent changes in microbial biomass, soil nutrient content and functional processes involved in the nitrogen cycle. However, soil transplant effects could be overridden by maize cropping, which was attributed to a negative interaction. Strikingly, abundances of nitrogen and carbon cycle genes were increased by these field experiments simulating global change, coinciding with higher soil nitrification potential and carbon dioxide (CO2) efflux. Further investigation revealed strong correlations between carbon cycle genes and CO2 efflux in bare soil but not cropped soil, and between nitrogen cycle genes and nitrification. These findings suggest that changes of soil carbon and nitrogen cycles by soil transplant and cropping were predictable by measuring microbial functional potentials, contributing to a better mechanistic understanding of these soil functional processes and suggesting a potential to incorporate microbial communities in greenhouse gas emission modeling. PMID:24694714

  8. Effects of Nutrient Enrichment on Microbial Communities and Carbon Cycling in Wetland Soils

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hartman, W.; Neubauer, S. C.; Richardson, C. J.

    2013-12-01

    Soil microbial communities are responsible for catalyzing biogeochemical transformations underlying critical wetland functions, including cycling of carbon (C) and nutrients, and emissions of greenhouse gasses (GHG). Alteration of nutrient availability in wetland soils may commonly occur as the result of anthropogenic impacts including runoff from human land uses in uplands, alteration of hydrology, and atmospheric deposition. However, the impacts of altered nutrient availability on microbial communities and carbon cycling in wetland soils are poorly understood. To assess these impacts, soil microbial communities and carbon cycling were determined in replicate experimental nutrient addition plots (control, +N, +P, +NP) across several wetland types, including pocosin peat bogs (NC), freshwater tidal marshes (GA), and tidal salt marshes (SC). Microbial communities were determined by pyrosequencing (Roche 454) extracted soil DNA, targeting both bacteria (16S rDNA) and fungi (LSU) at a depth of ca. 1000 sequences per plot. Wetland carbon cycling was evaluated using static chambers to determine soil GHG fluxes, and plant inclusion chambers were used to determine ecosystem C cycling. Soil bacterial communities responded to nutrient addition treatments in freshwater and tidal marshes, while fungal communities did not respond to treatments in any of our sites. We also compared microbial communities to continuous biogeochemical variables in soil, and found that bacterial community composition was correlated only with the content and availability of soil phosphorus, while fungi responded to phosphorus stoichiometry and soil pH. Surprisingly, we did not find a significant effect of our nutrient addition treatments on most metrics of carbon cycling. However, we did find that several metrics of soil carbon cycling appeared much more related to soil phosphorus than to nitrogen or soil carbon pools. Finally, while overall microbial community composition was weakly correlated with

  9. Proton transfer in microbial electrolysis cells

    DOE PAGES

    Borole, Abhijeet P.; Lewis, Alex J.

    2017-02-15

    Proton transfer and electron transfer are of prime importance in the development of microbial electrochemical cells. While electron transfer is primarily controlled by biology, proton transfer is controlled by process engineering and cell design. To develop commercially feasible technologies around the concept of a bioelectrochemical cell, real feedstocks have to be explored and associated limitations have to be identified. Here in this study, the proton transfer rate was quantified for a microbial electrolysis cell (MEC) and its dependence on process parameters was investigated using a proton balance model. The reaction system consisted of a biomass-derived pyrolytic aqueous stream as amore » substrate producing hydrogen in a flow-through MEC. The proton transfer rate increased with anode flow rate and organic loading rate up to a maximum of 0.36 ± 0.01 moles per m2 per h, equivalent to a hydrogen production rate of 9.08 L per L per day. Higher rates of hydrogen production, reaching 11.7 ± 0.2 L per L per day were achieved, when additional protons were provided via the cathode buffer. Electrochemical impedance spectroscopy shows that proton transfer was the dominant resistance in the production of hydrogen. The quantification of proton transfer rates for MECs with potential for biorefinery application and the demonstration of high hydrogen production rates approaching those required for commercial consideration indicate the strong potential of this technology for renewable hydrogen production. Understanding the transport phenomenon in bioelectrochemical cells is of great significance since these systems have potential for wide-ranging applications including energy production, bioremediation, chemical and nanomaterial synthesis, electro-fermentation, energy storage, desalination, and produced water treatment. Electron transfer in anode biofilms has been investigated extensively, but proton transfer studies are also important, since many cathodic half reactions

  10. Soil Microbial Nitrogen Cycling Responses to Wildfire in a High Elevation Forested Catchment in Jemez Mountains, NM

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Murphy, M. A.; Fairbanks, D.; Chorover, J.; Rich, V. I.; Gallery, R. E.; Boyer, J. C.

    2015-12-01

    Microbial communities mediate major ecosystem processes such as nutrient cycling, and their recovery after disturbances plays a substantial role in overall ecosystem recovery and resilience. Disturbances directly shift microbial communities and their related processes, and the severity of impact typically varies significantly with landscape position, depth, and hydrological conditions such that different conditions indicate that a specific process will be dominant. Wildfires in the southwest US are a major source of landscape-scale disturbance, and are predicted to continue increasing in size and intensity under climate change. This study investigates changing nitrogen cycling across a post-wildfire catchment within the Jemez River Basin Critical Zone Observatory. This site experienced a mixed (intermediate to high) burn severity wildfire in June 2013. Nitrogen cycling was investigated by profiling via qPCR the abundance of five key genes involved in microbial nitrogen cycling (nifH, amoA, nirS, nirK, nosZ), at points along and within the catchment. These results are being analyzed in the context of broader microbial community data (enzyme assays, microbial cell counts and biomass, and 16S rRNA gene amplicons surveys) and biogeochemical data (total organic carbon, total nitrogen, pH, graviametric water content, etc). W 22 sites along the sides of the basin (planar zones) and within the hollow (convergent zone) were sampled at 13 days, one, and two years post-fire, at six discrete depth increments from 0 to 40 cm from the surface. We attribute significance of variation in gene abundance in planar versus convergent zones, and among depths, to the strong correlation of nitrogen cycling processes (i.e., nitrification and denitrification) with specific C:N ratios, total organic carbon content, and other biogeochemical and soil edaphic parameters that vary with landscape position and wildfire. Data were also interrogated for evidence of multi-year patterns in nutrient-cycling

  11. Microbial Nitrogen-Cycle Gene Abundance in Soil of Cropland Abandoned for Different Periods

    PubMed Central

    Huhe; Borjigin, Shinchilelt; Buhebaoyin; Wu, Yanpei; Li, Minquan; Cheng, Yunxiang

    2016-01-01

    In Inner Mongolia, steppe grasslands face desertification or degradation because of human overuse and abandonment after inappropriate agricultural management. The soils in these abandoned croplands exist in heterogeneous environments characterized by widely fluctuating microbial growth. Quantitative polymerase chain reaction analysis of microbial genes encoding proteins involved in the nitrogen cycle was used to study Azotobacter species, nitrifiers, and denitrifiers in the soils from steppe grasslands and croplands abandoned for 2, 6, and 26 years. Except for nitrifying archaea and nitrous oxide-reducing bacteria, the relative genotypic abundance of microbial communities involved in nitrogen metabolism differed by approximately 2- to 10-fold between abandoned cropland and steppe grassland soils. Although nitrogen-cycle gene abundances varied with abandonment time, the abundance patterns of nitrogen-cycle genes separated distinctly into abandoned cropland versus light-grazing steppe grassland, despite the lack of any cultivation for over a quarter-century. Plant biomass and plant diversity exerted a significant effect on the abundance of microbial communities that mediate the nitrogen cycle (P < 0.002 and P < 0.03, respectively). The present study elucidates the ecology of bacteria that mediate the nitrogen cycle in recently abandoned croplands. PMID:27140199

  12. Microbial Nitrogen-Cycle Gene Abundance in Soil of Cropland Abandoned for Different Periods.

    PubMed

    Huhe; Borjigin, Shinchilelt; Buhebaoyin; Wu, Yanpei; Li, Minquan; Cheng, Yunxiang

    2016-01-01

    In Inner Mongolia, steppe grasslands face desertification or degradation because of human overuse and abandonment after inappropriate agricultural management. The soils in these abandoned croplands exist in heterogeneous environments characterized by widely fluctuating microbial growth. Quantitative polymerase chain reaction analysis of microbial genes encoding proteins involved in the nitrogen cycle was used to study Azotobacter species, nitrifiers, and denitrifiers in the soils from steppe grasslands and croplands abandoned for 2, 6, and 26 years. Except for nitrifying archaea and nitrous oxide-reducing bacteria, the relative genotypic abundance of microbial communities involved in nitrogen metabolism differed by approximately 2- to 10-fold between abandoned cropland and steppe grassland soils. Although nitrogen-cycle gene abundances varied with abandonment time, the abundance patterns of nitrogen-cycle genes separated distinctly into abandoned cropland versus light-grazing steppe grassland, despite the lack of any cultivation for over a quarter-century. Plant biomass and plant diversity exerted a significant effect on the abundance of microbial communities that mediate the nitrogen cycle (P < 0.002 and P < 0.03, respectively). The present study elucidates the ecology of bacteria that mediate the nitrogen cycle in recently abandoned croplands.

  13. H2 cycling and microbial bioenergetics in anoxic sediments

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Hoehler, Tori M.; DeVincenzi, Donald (Technical Monitor)

    2001-01-01

    The simple biochemistry of H2 is central to a large number of microbial processes, affecting the interaction of organisms with each other and with the environment. In anoxic sediments, the great majority of microbial redox processes involve H2 as a reactant, product, or potential by-product, and the thermodynamics of these processes are thus highly sensitive to fluctuations in environmental H2 concentrations. In turn, H2 concentrations are controlled by the activity of H2-consuming microorganisms, which efficiently utilize this substrate down to levels which correspond to their bioenergetic limitations. Consequently, any environmental change which impacts the thermodynamics of H2-consuming organisms is mirrored by a corresponding change in H2 concentrations. This phenomenon is illustrated in anoxic sediments from Cape Lookout Bight, NC, USA: H2 concentrations are controlled by a suite of environmental parameters (e.g., temperature, sulfate concentrations) in a fashion which can be quantitatively described by a simple thermodynamic model. These findings allow us to calculate the apparent minimum quantity of biologically useful energy in situ. We find that sulfate reducing bacteria are not active at energy yields below -18 kJ per mole sulfate, while methanogenic archaea exhibit a minimum close to -10 kJ per mole methane.

  14. Exploring Viral Mediated Carbon Cycling in Thawing Permafrost Microbial Communities

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Trubl, G. G.; Solonenko, N.; Moreno, M.; Sullivan, M. B.; Rich, V. I.

    2014-12-01

    Viruses are the most abundant biological entities on Earth and their impact on carbon cycling in permafrost habitats is poorly understood. Arctic C cycling is particularly important to interpret due to the rapid climate change occurring and the large amount of C stockpiled there (~1/3 of global soil C is stored in permafrost). Viruses of microbes (i.e. phages) play central roles in C cycling in the oceans, through cellular lysis (phage drive the largest ocean C flux about 150 Gt yr-1, dwarfing all others by >5-fold), production of associated DOC, as well as transport and expression during infection (1029 transduction events day-1). C cycling in thawing permafrost systems is critical in understanding the climate trajectory and phages may be as important for C cycling here as they are in the ocean. The thawed C may become a food source for microbes, producing CO2 and potentially CH4, both potent greenhouse gases. To address the potential role of phage in C cycling in these dynamic systems, we are examining phage from an arctic permafrost thaw gradient in northern Sweden. We have developed a protocol for successfully extracting phage from peat soils and are quantifying phage in 15 peat and 2 lake sediment cores, with the goal of sequencing viromes. Preliminary data suggest that phage are present at 109 g-1 across the permafrost thaw gradient (compared to the typical marine count ~105 ml-1), implying a potentially robust phage-host interaction web in these changing environments. We are examining phage from 11 depth intervals (covering the active and permafrost layer) in the cores to assess phage-host community dynamics. Phage morphology and abundance for each layer and environment are being determined using qTEM and EFM. Understanding the phage that infect bacteria and archaea in these rapidly changing habitats will provide insight into the controls on current and future CH4 and CO2 emissions in permafrost habitats.

  15. Shape recognition of microbial cells by colloidal cell imprints

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Borovička, Josef; Stoyanov, Simeon D.; Paunov, Vesselin N.

    2013-08-01

    We have engineered a class of colloids which can recognize the shape and size of targeted microbial cells and selectively bind to their surfaces. These imprinted colloid particles, which we called ``colloid antibodies'', were fabricated by partial fragmentation of silica shells obtained by templating the targeted microbial cells. We successfully demonstrated the shape and size recognition between such colloidal imprints and matching microbial cells. High percentage of binding events of colloidal imprints with the size matching target particles was achieved. We demonstrated selective binding of colloidal imprints to target microbial cells in a binary mixture of cells of different shapes and sizes, which also resulted in high binding selectivity. We explored the role of the electrostatic interactions between the target cells and their colloid imprints by pre-coating both of them with polyelectrolytes. Selective binding occurred predominantly in the case of opposite surface charges of the colloid cell imprint and the targeted cells. The mechanism of the recognition is based on the amplification of the surface adhesion in the case of shape and size match due to the increased contact area between the target cell and the colloidal imprint. We also tested the selective binding for colloid imprints of particles of fixed shape and varying sizes. The concept of cell recognition by colloid imprints could be used for development of colloid antibodies for shape-selective binding of microbes. Such colloid antibodies could be additionally functionalized with surface groups to enhance their binding efficiency to cells of specific shape and deliver a drug payload directly to their surface or allow them to be manipulated using external fields. They could benefit the pharmaceutical industry in developing selective antimicrobial therapies and formulations.

  16. Cell cycle control and seed development.

    PubMed

    Dante, Ricardo A; Larkins, Brian A; Sabelli, Paolo A

    2014-01-01

    Seed development is a complex process that requires coordinated integration of many genetic, metabolic, and physiological pathways and environmental cues. Different cell cycle types, such as asymmetric cell division, acytokinetic mitosis, mitotic cell division, and endoreduplication, frequently occur in sequential yet overlapping manner during the development of the embryo and the endosperm, seed structures that are both products of double fertilization. Asymmetric cell divisions in the embryo generate polarized daughter cells with different cell fates. While nuclear and cell division cycles play a key role in determining final seed cell numbers, endoreduplication is often associated with processes such as cell enlargement and accumulation of storage metabolites that underlie cell differentiation and growth of the different seed compartments. This review focuses on recent advances in our understanding of different cell cycle mechanisms operating during seed development and their impact on the growth, development, and function of seed tissues. Particularly, the roles of core cell cycle regulators, such as cyclin-dependent-kinases and their inhibitors, the Retinoblastoma-Related/E2F pathway and the proteasome-ubiquitin system, are discussed in the contexts of different cell cycle types that characterize seed development. The contributions of nuclear and cellular proliferative cycles and endoreduplication to cereal endosperm development are also discussed.

  17. Cell cycle control and seed development

    PubMed Central

    Dante, Ricardo A.; Larkins, Brian A.; Sabelli, Paolo A.

    2014-01-01

    Seed development is a complex process that requires coordinated integration of many genetic, metabolic, and physiological pathways and environmental cues. Different cell cycle types, such as asymmetric cell division, acytokinetic mitosis, mitotic cell division, and endoreduplication, frequently occur in sequential yet overlapping manner during the development of the embryo and the endosperm, seed structures that are both products of double fertilization. Asymmetric cell divisions in the embryo generate polarized daughter cells with different cell fates. While nuclear and cell division cycles play a key role in determining final seed cell numbers, endoreduplication is often associated with processes such as cell enlargement and accumulation of storage metabolites that underlie cell differentiation and growth of the different seed compartments. This review focuses on recent advances in our understanding of different cell cycle mechanisms operating during seed development and their impact on the growth, development, and function of seed tissues. Particularly, the roles of core cell cycle regulators, such as cyclin-dependent-kinases and their inhibitors, the Retinoblastoma-Related/E2F pathway and the proteasome-ubiquitin system, are discussed in the contexts of different cell cycle types that characterize seed development. The contributions of nuclear and cellular proliferative cycles and endoreduplication to cereal endosperm development are also discussed. PMID:25295050

  18. Cell cycle gene expression under clinorotation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Artemenko, Olga

    2016-07-01

    Cyclins and cyclin-dependent kinase (CDK) are main regulators of the cell cycle of eukaryotes. It's assumes a significant change of their level in cells under microgravity conditions and by other physical factors actions. The clinorotation use enables to determine the influence of gravity on simulated events in the cell during the cell cycle - exit from the state of quiet stage and promotion presynthetic phase (G1) and DNA synthesis phase (S) of the cell cycle. For the clinorotation effect study on cell proliferation activity is the necessary studies of molecular mechanisms of cell cycle regulation and development of plants under altered gravity condition. The activity of cyclin D, which is responsible for the events of the cell cycle in presynthetic phase can be controlled by the action of endogenous as well as exogenous factors, but clinorotation is one of the factors that influence on genes expression that regulate the cell cycle.These data can be used as a model for further research of cyclin - CDK complex for study of molecular mechanisms regulation of growth and proliferation. In this investigation we tried to summarize and analyze known literature and own data we obtained relatively the main regulators of the cell cycle in altered gravity condition.

  19. The peri-cell-cycle in Arabidopsis.

    PubMed

    Beeckman, T; Burssens, S; Inzé, D

    2001-03-01

    The root systems of plants proliferate via de novo formed meristems originating from differentiated pericycle cells. The identity of putative signals responsible for triggering some of the pericycle cells to re-enter the cell cycle remains unknown. Here, the cell cycle regulation in the pericycle of seedling roots of Arabidopsis thaliana (L.) HEYNH: is studied shortly after germination using various strategies. Based on the detailed analysis of the promoter-beta-glucuronidase activity of four key cell cycle regulatory genes, combined with cell length measurements, microdensitometry of DNA content, and experiments with a cell cycle-blocking agent, a model is proposed for cell cycle regulation in the pericycle at the onset of lateral root initiation. The results clearly show that before the first lateral root is initiated, the pericycle consists of dissimilar cell files in respect of their cell division history. Depending on the distance behind the root tip and on position in relation to the vascular tissue, particular pericycle cells remain in the G(2) phase of the cell cycle and are apparently more susceptible to lateral root initiation than others.

  20. A new method for water desalination using microbial desalination cells.

    PubMed

    Cao, Xiaoxin; Huang, Xia; Liang, Peng; Xiao, Kang; Zhou, Yingjun; Zhang, Xiaoyuan; Logan, Bruce E

    2009-09-15

    Current water desalination techniques are energy intensive and some use membranes operated at high pressures. It is shown here that water desalination can be accomplished without electrical energy input or high water pressure by using a source of organic matter as the fuel to desalinate water. A microbial fuel cell was modified by placing two membranes between the anode and cathode, creating a middle chamber for water desalination between the membranes. An anion exchange membrane was placed adjacent to the anode, and a cation exchange membrane was positioned next to the cathode. When current was produced by bacteria on the anode, ionic species in the middle chamber were transferred into the two electrode chambers, desalinating the water in the middle chamber. Proof-of-concept experiments for this approach, using what we call a microbial desalination cell (MDC), was demonstrated using water at different initial salt concentrations (5, 20, and 35 g/L) with acetate used as the substrate for the bacteria. The MDC produced a maximum of 2 W/m2 (31 W/m3) while at the same time removing about 90% of the salt in a single desalination cycle. As the salt was removed from the middle chamber the ohmic resistance of the MDC (measured using electrochemical impedance spectroscopy) increased from 25 Omega to 970 Omega at the end of the cycle. This increased resistance was reflected by a continuous decrease in the voltage produced over the cycle. These results demonstrate for the first time the possibility for a new method for water desalination and power production that uses only a source of biodegradable organic matter and bacteria.

  1. Stretched cell cycle model for proliferating lymphocytes

    PubMed Central

    Dowling, Mark R.; Kan, Andrey; Heinzel, Susanne; Zhou, Jie H. S.; Marchingo, Julia M.; Wellard, Cameron J.; Markham, John F.; Hodgkin, Philip D.

    2014-01-01

    Stochastic variation in cell cycle time is a consistent feature of otherwise similar cells within a growing population. Classic studies concluded that the bulk of the variation occurs in the G1 phase, and many mathematical models assume a constant time for traversing the S/G2/M phases. By direct observation of transgenic fluorescent fusion proteins that report the onset of S phase, we establish that dividing B and T lymphocytes spend a near-fixed proportion of total division time in S/G2/M phases, and this proportion is correlated between sibling cells. This result is inconsistent with models that assume independent times for consecutive phases. Instead, we propose a stretching model for dividing lymphocytes where all parts of the cell cycle are proportional to total division time. Data fitting based on a stretched cell cycle model can significantly improve estimates of cell cycle parameters drawn from DNA labeling data used to monitor immune cell dynamics. PMID:24733943

  2. Transcriptomic evidence for microbial sulfur cycling in the eastern tropical North Pacific oxygen minimum zone

    PubMed Central

    Carolan, Molly T.; Smith, Jason M.; Beman, J. M.

    2015-01-01

    Microbial communities play central roles in ocean biogeochemical cycles, and are particularly important in in oceanic oxygen minimum zones (OMZs). However, the key carbon, nitrogen, and sulfur (S) cycling processes catalyzed by OMZ microbial communities are poorly constrained spatially, temporally, and with regard to the different microbial groups involved. Here we sample across dissolved oxygen (DO) gradients in the oceans’ largest OMZ by volume—the eastern tropical North Pacific ocean, or ETNP—and quantify 16S rRNA and functional gene transcripts to detect and constrain the activity of different S-cycling groups. Based on gene expression profiles, putative dissimilatory sulfite reductase (dsrA) genes are actively expressed within the ETNP OMZ. dsrA expression was limited almost entirely to samples with elevated nitrite concentrations, consistent with previous observations in the Eastern Tropical South Pacific OMZ. dsrA and ‘reverse’ dissimilatory sulfite reductase (rdsrA) genes are related and the associated enzymes are known to operate in either direction—reducing or oxidizing different S compounds. We found that rdsrA genes and soxB genes were expressed in the same samples, suggestive of active S cycling in the ETNP OMZ. These data provide potential thresholds for S cycling in OMZs that closely mimic recent predictions, and indicate that S cycling may be broadly relevant in OMZs. PMID:26029168

  3. Design of a microbial fuel cell and its transition to microbial electrolytic cell for hydrogen production by electrohydrogenesis.

    PubMed

    Gupta, Pratima; Parkhey, Piyush; Joshi, Komal; Mahilkar, Anjali

    2013-10-01

    Anaerobic bacteria were isolated from industrial wastewater and soil samples and tested for exoelectrogenic activity by current production in double chambered microbial fuel cell (MFC), which was further transitioned into a single chambered microbial electrolytic cell to test hydrogen production by electrohydrogenesis. Of all the cultures, the isolate from industrial water sample showed the maximum values for current = 0.161 mA, current density = 108.57 mA/m2 and power density = 48.85 mW/m2 with graphite electrode. Maximum voltage across the cell, however, was reported by the isolate from sewage water sample (506 mv) with copper as electrode. Tap water with KMnO4 was the best cathodic electrolyte as the highest values for all the measured MFC parameters were reported with it. Once the exoelectrogenic activity of the isolates was confirmed by current production, these were tested for hydrogen production in a single chambered microbial electrolytic cell (MEC) modified from the MFC. Hydrogen production was reported positive from co-culture of isolates of both the water samples and co-culture of one soil and one water sample. The maximum rate and yield of hydrogen production was 0.18 m3H2/m3/d and 3.2 mol H2/mol glucose respectively with total hydrogen production of 42.4 mL and energy recovery of 57.4%. Cumulative hydrogen production for a five day cycle of MEC operation was 0.16 m3H2/m3/d.

  4. Soil Microbial Activity Provides Insight to Carbon Cycling in Shrub Ecotones of Sub-Arctic Sweden

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Marek, E.; Kashi, N. N.; Chen, J.; Hobbie, E. A.; Schwan, M. R.; Varner, R. K.

    2015-12-01

    Shrubs are expanding in Arctic and sub-Arctic regions due to rising atmospheric temperatures. Microbial activity increases as growing temperatures cause permafrost warming and subsequent thaw, leading to a greater resource of soil nutrients enabling shrub growth. Increased carbon inputs from shrubs is predicted to result in faster carbon turnover by microbial decomposition. Further understanding of microbial activity underneath shrubs could uncover how microbes and soil processes interact to promote shrub expansion and carbon cycling. To address how higher soil carbon input from shrubs influences decomposition, soil samples were taken across a heath, shrub, and forest ecotone gradient at two sites near Abikso, Sweden. Samples were analyzed for soluble carbon and nitrogen, microbial abundance, and microbial activity of chitinase, glucosidase, and phosphatase to reflect organic matter decomposition and availability of nitrogen, carbon, and phosphate respectively. Chitinase activity positively correlated with shrub cover, suggesting microbial demands for nitrogen increase with higher shrub cover. Glucosidase activity negatively correlated with shrub cover and soluble carbon, suggesting decreased microbial demand for carbon as shrub cover and carbon stores increase. Lower glucosidase activity in areas with high carbon input from shrubs implies that microbes are decomposing carbon less readily than carbon is being put into the soil. Increasing soil carbon stores in shrub covered areas can lead to shrubs becoming a net carbon sink and a negative feedback to changing climate.

  5. Determinants of the distribution of nitrogen-cycling microbial communities at the landscape scale.

    PubMed

    Bru, D; Ramette, A; Saby, N P A; Dequiedt, S; Ranjard, L; Jolivet, C; Arrouays, D; Philippot, L

    2011-03-01

    Little information is available regarding the landscape-scale distribution of microbial communities and its environmental determinants. However, a landscape perspective is needed to understand the relative importance of local and regional factors and land management for the microbial communities and the ecosystem services they provide. In the most comprehensive analysis of spatial patterns of microbial communities to date, we investigated the distribution of functional microbial communities involved in N-cycling and of the total bacterial and crenarchaeal communities over 107 sites in Burgundy, a 31,500 km(2) region of France, using a 16 × 16 km(2) sampling grid. At each sampling site, the abundance of total bacteria, crenarchaea, nitrate reducers, denitrifiers- and ammonia oxidizers were estimated by quantitative PCR and 42 soil physico-chemical properties were measured. The relative contributions of land use, spatial distance, climatic conditions, time, and soil physico-chemical properties to the spatial distribution of the different communities were analyzed by canonical variation partitioning. Our results indicate that 43-85% of the spatial variation in community abundances could be explained by the measured environmental parameters, with soil chemical properties (mostly pH) being the main driver. We found spatial autocorrelation up to 739 km and used geostatistical modelling to generate predictive maps of the distribution of microbial communities at the landscape scale. The present study highlights the potential of a spatially explicit approach for microbial ecology to identify the overarching factors driving the spatial heterogeneity of microbial communities even at the landscape scale.

  6. The microbial engines that drive Earth's biogeochemical cycles.

    PubMed

    Falkowski, Paul G; Fenchel, Tom; Delong, Edward F

    2008-05-23

    Virtually all nonequilibrium electron transfers on Earth are driven by a set of nanobiological machines composed largely of multimeric protein complexes associated with a small number of prosthetic groups. These machines evolved exclusively in microbes early in our planet's history yet, despite their antiquity, are highly conserved. Hence, although there is enormous genetic diversity in nature, there remains a relatively stable set of core genes coding for the major redox reactions essential for life and biogeochemical cycles. These genes created and coevolved with biogeochemical cycles and were passed from microbe to microbe primarily by horizontal gene transfer. A major challenge in the coming decades is to understand how these machines evolved, how they work, and the processes that control their activity on both molecular and planetary scales.

  7. Protein tyrosine nitration in the cell cycle

    SciTech Connect

    Jia, Min; Mateoiu, Claudia; Souchelnytskyi, Serhiy

    2011-09-23

    Highlights: {yields} Enrichment of 3-nitrotyrosine containing proteins from cells synchronized in different phases of the cell cycle. {yields} Identification of 76 tyrosine nitrated proteins that change expression during the cell cycle. {yields} Nineteen identified proteins were previously described as regulators of cell proliferation. -- Abstract: Nitration of tyrosine residues in proteins is associated with cell response to oxidative/nitrosative stress. Tyrosine nitration is relatively low abundant post-translational modification that may affect protein functions. Little is known about the extent of protein tyrosine nitration in cells during progression through the cell cycle. Here we report identification of proteins enriched for tyrosine nitration in cells synchronized in G0/G1, S or G2/M phases of the cell cycle. We identified 27 proteins in cells synchronized in G0/G1 phase, 37 proteins in S phase synchronized cells, and 12 proteins related to G2/M phase. Nineteen of the identified proteins were previously described as regulators of cell proliferation. Thus, our data indicate which tyrosine nitrated proteins may affect regulation of the cell cycle.

  8. Unveiling Microbial Carbon Cycling Processes in Key U.S. Soils using ''Omics''

    SciTech Connect

    Myrold, David D.; Bottomely, Peter J.; Jumpponen, Ari; Rice, Charles W.; Zeglin, Lydia H.; David, Maude M.; Jansson, Janet K.; Prestat, Emmanuel; Hettich, Robert L.

    2014-09-17

    Soils process and store large amounts of C; however, considerable uncertainty still exists about the details of that influence microbial partitioning of C into soil C pools, and what are the main influential forces that control the fraction of the C input that is stabilized. The soil microbial community is genotypically and phenotypically diverse. Despite our ability to predict the kinds of regional environmental changes that will accompany global climate change, it is not clear how the microbial community will respond to climate-induced modification of precipitation and inter-precipitation intervals, and if this response will affect the fate of C deposited into soil by the local plant community. Part of this uncertainty lies with our ignorance of how the microbial community adapts genotypically and physiologically to changes in soil moisture brought about by shifts in precipitation. Our overarching goal is to harness the power of multiple meta-omics tools to gain greater understanding of the functioning of whole-soil microbial communities and their role in C cycling. We will do this by meeting the following three objectives: 1. Further develop and optimize a combination of meta-omics approaches to study how environmental factors affect microbially-mediated C cycling processes. 2. Determine the impacts of long-term changes in precipitation timing on microbial C cycling using an existing long-term field manipulation of a tallgrass prairie soil. 3. Conduct laboratory experiments that vary moisture and C inputs to confirm field observations of the linkages between microbial communities and C cycling processes. We took advantage of our state-of-the-art expertise in community “omics” to better understand the functioning soil C cycling within the Great Prairie ecosystem, including our ongoing Konza Prairie soil metagenome flagship project at JGI and the unique rainfall manipulation plots (RaMPs) established at this site more than a decade ago. We employed a systems

  9. The Epsomitic Phototrophic Microbial Mat of Hot Lake, Washington. Community Structural Responses to Seasonal Cycling

    SciTech Connect

    Lindemann, Stephen R.; Moran, James J.; Stegen, James C.; Renslow, Ryan S.; Hutchison, Janine R.; Cole, Jessica K.; Dohnalkova, Alice; Tremblay, Julien; Singh, Kanwar; Malfatti, Stephanie; Chen, Feng; Tringe, Susannah; Beyenal, Haluk; Fredrickson, Jim K.

    2013-11-13

    Phototrophic microbial mats are compact ecosystems composed of highly interactive organisms in which energy and element cycling take place over millimeter-to-centimeter-scale distances. Although microbial mats are common in hypersaline environments, they have not been extensively characterized in systems dominated by divalent ions. Hot Lake is a meromictic, epsomitic lake that occupies a small, endorheic basin in north-central Washington. The lake harbors a benthic, phototrophic mat that assembles each spring, disassembles each fall, and is subject to greater than tenfold variation in salinity (primarily Mg2+ and SO2-4) and irradiation over the annual cycle. We examined spatiotemporal variation in the mat community at five time points throughout the annual cycle with respect to prevailing physicochemical parameters by amplicon sequencing of the V4 region of the 16S rRNA gene coupled to near-full-length 16S RNA clone sequences. The composition of these microbial communities was relatively stable over the seasonal cycle and included dominant populations of Cyanobacteria, primarily a group IV cyanobacterium (Leptolyngbya), and Alphaproteobacteria (specifically, members of Rhodobacteraceae and Geminicoccus). Members of Gammaproteobacteria (e.g., Thioalkalivibrio and Halochromatium) and Deltaproteobacteria (e.g., Desulfofustis) that are likely to be involved in sulfur cycling peaked in summer and declined significantly by mid-fall, mirroring larger trends in mat community richness and evenness. Phylogenetic turnover analysis of abundant phylotypes employing environmental metadata suggests that seasonal shifts in light variability exert a dominant influence on the composition of Hot Lake microbial mat communities. The seasonal development and organization of these structured microbial mats provide opportunities for analysis of the temporal and physical dynamics that feed back to community function.

  10. The epsomitic phototrophic microbial mat of Hot Lake, Washington: community structural responses to seasonal cycling

    PubMed Central

    Lindemann, Stephen R.; Moran, James J.; Stegen, James C.; Renslow, Ryan S.; Hutchison, Janine R.; Cole, Jessica K.; Dohnalkova, Alice C.; Tremblay, Julien; Singh, Kanwar; Malfatti, Stephanie A.; Chen, Feng; Tringe, Susannah G.; Beyenal, Haluk; Fredrickson, James K.

    2013-01-01

    Phototrophic microbial mats are compact ecosystems composed of highly interactive organisms in which energy and element cycling take place over millimeter-to-centimeter-scale distances. Although microbial mats are common in hypersaline environments, they have not been extensively characterized in systems dominated by divalent ions. Hot Lake is a meromictic, epsomitic lake that occupies a small, endorheic basin in north-central Washington. The lake harbors a benthic, phototrophic mat that assembles each spring, disassembles each fall, and is subject to greater than tenfold variation in salinity (primarily Mg2+ and SO2−4) and irradiation over the annual cycle. We examined spatiotemporal variation in the mat community at five time points throughout the annual cycle with respect to prevailing physicochemical parameters by amplicon sequencing of the V4 region of the 16S rRNA gene coupled to near-full-length 16S RNA clone sequences. The composition of these microbial communities was relatively stable over the seasonal cycle and included dominant populations of Cyanobacteria, primarily a group IV cyanobacterium (Leptolyngbya), and Alphaproteobacteria (specifically, members of Rhodobacteraceae and Geminicoccus). Members of Gammaproteobacteria (e.g., Thioalkalivibrio and Halochromatium) and Deltaproteobacteria (e.g., Desulfofustis) that are likely to be involved in sulfur cycling peaked in summer and declined significantly by mid-fall, mirroring larger trends in mat community richness and evenness. Phylogenetic turnover analysis of abundant phylotypes employing environmental metadata suggests that seasonal shifts in light variability exert a dominant influence on the composition of Hot Lake microbial mat communities. The seasonal development and organization of these structured microbial mats provide opportunities for analysis of the temporal and physical dynamics that feed back to community function. PMID:24312082

  11. Ohmic resistance affects microbial community and electrochemical kinetics in a multi-anode microbial electrochemical cell

    EPA Science Inventory

    Multi-anode microbial electrochemical cells (MXCs) are considered as one of the most promising configurations for scale-up of MXCs, but fundamental understanding of anode kinetics governing current density is limited in the MXCs. In this study we first assessed microbial communi...

  12. Combining microbial cultures for efficient production of electricity from butyrate in a microbial electrochemical cell.

    PubMed

    Miceli, Joseph F; Garcia-Peña, Ines; Parameswaran, Prathap; Torres, César I; Krajmalnik-Brown, Rosa

    2014-10-01

    Butyrate is an important product of anaerobic fermentation; however, it is not directly used by characterized strains of the highly efficient anode respiring bacteria (ARB) Geobacter sulfurreducens in microbial electrochemical cells. By combining a butyrate-oxidizing community with a Geobacter rich culture, we generated a microbial community which outperformed many naturally derived communities found in the literature for current production from butyrate and rivaled the highest performing natural cultures in terms of current density (∼ 11A/m(2)) and Coulombic efficiency (∼ 70%). Microbial community analyses support the shift in the microbial community from one lacking efficient ARB in the marine hydrothermal vent community to a community consisting of ∼ 80% Geobacter in the anode biofilm. This demonstrates the successful production and adaptation of a novel microbial culture for generating electrical current from butyrate with high current density and high Coulombic efficiency, by combining two mixed microbial cultures containing complementing biochemical pathways.

  13. Nucleosome architecture throughout the cell cycle.

    PubMed

    Deniz, Özgen; Flores, Oscar; Aldea, Martí; Soler-López, Montserrat; Orozco, Modesto

    2016-01-28

    Nucleosomes provide additional regulatory mechanisms to transcription and DNA replication by mediating the access of proteins to DNA. During the cell cycle chromatin undergoes several conformational changes, however the functional significance of these changes to cellular processes are largely unexplored. Here, we present the first comprehensive genome-wide study of nucleosome plasticity at single base-pair resolution along the cell cycle in Saccharomyces cerevisiae. We determined nucleosome organization with a specific focus on two regulatory regions: transcription start sites (TSSs) and replication origins (ORIs). During the cell cycle, nucleosomes around TSSs display rearrangements in a cyclic manner. In contrast to gap (G1 and G2) phases, nucleosomes have a fuzzier organization during S and M phases, Moreover, the choreography of nucleosome rearrangements correlate with changes in gene expression during the cell cycle, indicating a strong association between nucleosomes and cell cycle-dependent gene functionality. On the other hand, nucleosomes are more dynamic around ORIs along the cell cycle, albeit with tighter regulation in early firing origins, implying the functional role of nucleosomes on replication origins. Our study provides a dynamic picture of nucleosome organization throughout the cell cycle and highlights the subsequent impact on transcription and replication activity.

  14. Nucleosome architecture throughout the cell cycle

    PubMed Central

    Deniz, Özgen; Flores, Oscar; Aldea, Martí; Soler-López, Montserrat; Orozco, Modesto

    2016-01-01

    Nucleosomes provide additional regulatory mechanisms to transcription and DNA replication by mediating the access of proteins to DNA. During the cell cycle chromatin undergoes several conformational changes, however the functional significance of these changes to cellular processes are largely unexplored. Here, we present the first comprehensive genome-wide study of nucleosome plasticity at single base-pair resolution along the cell cycle in Saccharomyces cerevisiae. We determined nucleosome organization with a specific focus on two regulatory regions: transcription start sites (TSSs) and replication origins (ORIs). During the cell cycle, nucleosomes around TSSs display rearrangements in a cyclic manner. In contrast to gap (G1 and G2) phases, nucleosomes have a fuzzier organization during S and M phases, Moreover, the choreography of nucleosome rearrangements correlate with changes in gene expression during the cell cycle, indicating a strong association between nucleosomes and cell cycle-dependent gene functionality. On the other hand, nucleosomes are more dynamic around ORIs along the cell cycle, albeit with tighter regulation in early firing origins, implying the functional role of nucleosomes on replication origins. Our study provides a dynamic picture of nucleosome organization throughout the cell cycle and highlights the subsequent impact on transcription and replication activity. PMID:26818620

  15. Evidence for microbial carbon and sulfur cycling in deeply buried ridge flank basalt.

    PubMed

    Lever, Mark A; Rouxel, Olivier; Alt, Jeffrey C; Shimizu, Nobumichi; Ono, Shuhei; Coggon, Rosalind M; Shanks, Wayne C; Lapham, Laura; Elvert, Marcus; Prieto-Mollar, Xavier; Hinrichs, Kai-Uwe; Inagaki, Fumio; Teske, Andreas

    2013-03-15

    Sediment-covered basalt on the flanks of mid-ocean ridges constitutes most of Earth's oceanic crust, but the composition and metabolic function of its microbial ecosystem are largely unknown. By drilling into 3.5-million-year-old subseafloor basalt, we demonstrated the presence of methane- and sulfur-cycling microbes on the eastern flank of the Juan de Fuca Ridge. Depth horizons with functional genes indicative of methane-cycling and sulfate-reducing microorganisms are enriched in solid-phase sulfur and total organic carbon, host δ(13)C- and δ(34)S-isotopic values with a biological imprint, and show clear signs of microbial activity when incubated in the laboratory. Downcore changes in carbon and sulfur cycling show discrete geochemical intervals with chemoautotrophic δ(13)C signatures locally attenuated by heterotrophic metabolism.

  16. Convergent development of anodic bacterial communities in microbial fuel cells

    PubMed Central

    Yates, Matthew D; Kiely, Patrick D; Call, Douglas F; Rismani-Yazdi, Hamid; Bibby, Kyle; Peccia, Jordan; Regan, John M; Logan, Bruce E

    2012-01-01

    Microbial fuel cells (MFCs) are often inoculated from a single wastewater source. The extent that the inoculum affects community development or power production is unknown. The stable anodic microbial communities in MFCs were examined using three inocula: a wastewater treatment plant sample known to produce consistent power densities, a second wastewater treatment plant sample, and an anaerobic bog sediment. The bog-inoculated MFCs initially produced higher power densities than the wastewater-inoculated MFCs, but after 20 cycles all MFCs on average converged to similar voltages (470±20 mV) and maximum power densities (590±170 mW m−2). The power output from replicate bog-inoculated MFCs was not significantly different, but one wastewater-inoculated MFC (UAJA3 (UAJA, University Area Joint Authority Wastewater Treatment Plant)) produced substantially less power. Denaturing gradient gel electrophoresis profiling showed a stable exoelectrogenic biofilm community in all samples after 11 cycles. After 16 cycles the predominance of Geobacter spp. in anode communities was identified using 16S rRNA gene clone libraries (58±10%), fluorescent in-situ hybridization (FISH) (63±6%) and pyrosequencing (81±4%). While the clone library analysis for the underperforming UAJA3 had a significantly lower percentage of Geobacter spp. sequences (36%), suggesting that a predominance of this microbe was needed for convergent power densities, the lower percentage of this species was not verified by FISH or pyrosequencing analyses. These results show that the predominance of Geobacter spp. in acetate-fed systems was consistent with good MFC performance and independent of the inoculum source. PMID:22572637

  17. Effects of freeze-thaw cycles on anaerobic microbial processes in an Arctic intertidal mud flat.

    PubMed

    Sawicka, Joanna E; Robador, Alberto; Hubert, Casey; Jørgensen, Bo Barker; Brüchert, Volker

    2010-04-01

    Insight into the effects of repeated freezing and thawing on microbial processes in sediments and soils is important for understanding sediment carbon cycling at high latitudes acutely affected by global warming. Microbial responses to repeated freeze-thaw conditions were studied in three complementary experiments using arctic sediment collected from an intertidal flat that is exposed to seasonal freeze-thaw conditions (Ymerbukta, Svalbard, Arctic Ocean). The sediment was subjected to oscillating freeze-thaw incubations, either gradual, from -5 to 4 degrees C, or abrupt, from -20 to 10 degrees C. Concentrations of low-molecular weight carboxylic acids (volatile fatty acids) were measured and sulfate reduction was assessed by measuring (35)S sulfate reduction rates (SRRs). Gradual freeze-thaw incubation decreased microbial activity in the frozen state to 0.25 % of initial levels at 4 degrees C, but activity resumed rapidly reaching >60 % of initial activity in the thawed state. Exposure of sediments to successive large temperature changes (-20 versus 10 degrees C) decreased SRR by 80% of the initial activity, suggesting that a fraction of the bacterial community recovered rapidly from extreme temperature fluctuations. This is supported by 16S rRNA gene-based denaturing gradient gel electrophoresis profiles that revealed persistence of the dominant microbial taxa under repeated freeze-thaw cycles. The fast recovery of the SRRs suggests that carbon mineralization in thawing arctic sediment can resume without delay or substantial growth of microbial populations.

  18. Methane cycling. Nonequilibrium clumped isotope signals in microbial methane.

    PubMed

    Wang, David T; Gruen, Danielle S; Lollar, Barbara Sherwood; Hinrichs, Kai-Uwe; Stewart, Lucy C; Holden, James F; Hristov, Alexander N; Pohlman, John W; Morrill, Penny L; Könneke, Martin; Delwiche, Kyle B; Reeves, Eoghan P; Sutcliffe, Chelsea N; Ritter, Daniel J; Seewald, Jeffrey S; McIntosh, Jennifer C; Hemond, Harold F; Kubo, Michael D; Cardace, Dawn; Hoehler, Tori M; Ono, Shuhei

    2015-04-24

    Methane is a key component in the global carbon cycle, with a wide range of anthropogenic and natural sources. Although isotopic compositions of methane have traditionally aided source identification, the abundance of its multiply substituted "clumped" isotopologues (for example, (13)CH3D) has recently emerged as a proxy for determining methane-formation temperatures. However, the effect of biological processes on methane's clumped isotopologue signature is poorly constrained. We show that methanogenesis proceeding at relatively high rates in cattle, surface environments, and laboratory cultures exerts kinetic control on (13)CH3D abundances and results in anomalously elevated formation-temperature estimates. We demonstrate quantitatively that H2 availability accounts for this effect. Clumped methane thermometry can therefore provide constraints on the generation of methane in diverse settings, including continental serpentinization sites and ancient, deep groundwaters.

  19. Microbial proliferation on gill structures of juvenile European lobster ( Homarus gammarus) during a moult cycle

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Middlemiss, Karen L.; Urbina, Mauricio A.; Wilson, Rod W.

    2015-12-01

    The morphology of gill-cleaning structures is not well described in European lobster ( Homarus gammarus). Furthermore, the magnitude and time scale of microbial proliferation on gill structures is unknown to date. Scanning electron microscopy was used to investigate development of setae in zoea, megalopa and juvenile stages (I-V). Microbes were classified and quantified on gill structures throughout a moult cycle from megalopa (stage IV) to juvenile (stage V). Epipodial serrulate setae, consisting of a naked proximal setal shaft with the distal portion possessing scale-like outgrowths (setules), occur only after zoea stage III. After moulting to megalopa (stage IV), gill structures were completely clean and no microbes were visible on days 1 or 5 postmoult. Microbial proliferation was first evident on day 10 postmoult, with a significant 16-fold increase from day 10 to 15. Rod-shaped bacteria were initially predominant (by day 10); however, by day 15 the microbial community was dominated by cocci-shaped bacteria. This research provides new insights into the morphology of gill-grooming structures, the timing of their development, and the magnitude, timescale and characteristics of gill microbial proliferation during a moult cycle. To some degree, the exponential growth of epibionts on gills found during a moult cycle will likely impair respiratory (gas exchange) and ion regulatory function, yet further research is needed to evaluate the physiological effects of the exponential bacterial proliferation documented here.

  20. Microbial fuel cells and microbial electrolysis cells for the production of bioelectricity and biomaterials.

    PubMed

    Zhou, Minghua; Yang, Jie; Wang, Hongyu; Jin, Tao; Xu, Dake; Gu, Tingyue

    2013-01-01

    Today's global energy crisis requires a multifaceted solution. Bioenergy is an important part of the solution. The microbial fuel cell (MFC) technology stands out as an attractive potential technology in bioenergy. MFCs can convert energy stored in organic matter directly into bioelectricity. MFCs can also be operated in the electrolysis mode as microbial electrolysis cells to produce bioproducts such as hydrogen and ethanol. Various wastewaters containing low-grade organic carbons that are otherwise unutilized can be used as feed streams for MFCs. Despite major advances in the past decade, further improvements in MFC power output and cost reduction are needed for MFCs to be practical. This paper analysed MFC operating principles using bioenergetics and bioelectrochemistry. Several major issues were explored to improve the MFC performance. An emphasis was placed on the use of catalytic materials for MFC electrodes. Recent advances in the production of various biomaterials using MFCs were also investigated.

  1. Two stage bioethanol refining with multi litre stacked microbial fuel cell and microbial electrolysis cell.

    PubMed

    Sugnaux, Marc; Happe, Manuel; Cachelin, Christian Pierre; Gloriod, Olivier; Huguenin, Gérald; Blatter, Maxime; Fischer, Fabian

    2016-12-01

    Ethanol, electricity, hydrogen and methane were produced in a two stage bioethanol refinery setup based on a 10L microbial fuel cell (MFC) and a 33L microbial electrolysis cell (MEC). The MFC was a triple stack for ethanol and electricity co-generation. The stack configuration produced more ethanol with faster glucose consumption the higher the stack potential. Under electrolytic conditions ethanol productivity outperformed standard conditions and reached 96.3% of the theoretically best case. At lower external loads currents and working potentials oscillated in a self-synchronized manner over all three MFC units in the stack. In the second refining stage, fermentation waste was converted into methane, using the scale up MEC stack. The bioelectric methanisation reached 91% efficiency at room temperature with an applied voltage of 1.5V using nickel cathodes. The two stage bioethanol refining process employing bioelectrochemical reactors produces more energy vectors than is possible with today's ethanol distilleries.

  2. Microbially-influenced Fe-Cycling within high pH serpentinizing springs of the Zambales Ophiolite, Philippines

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Casar, C.; Meyer-Dombard, D. R.; Simon, A.; Cardace, D.; Arcilla, C. A.

    2014-12-01

    . This activity will increase directly with increasing cell growth, and will not be evident in abiotic control microcosms. Evidence of reduced iron mineral formation over time will be seen, and DNA sequencing will yield consistent results with microbes capable of metabolizing iron, thus demonstrating microbially-influenced iron cycling in this system.

  3. Programming microbial population dynamics by engineered cell-cell communication.

    PubMed

    Song, Hao; Payne, Stephen; Tan, Cheemeng; You, Lingchong

    2011-07-01

    A major aim of synthetic biology is to program novel cellular behavior using engineered gene circuits. Early endeavors focused on building simple circuits that fulfill simple functions, such as logic gates, bistable toggle switches, and oscillators. These gene circuits have primarily focused on single-cell behaviors since they operate intracellularly. Thus, they are often susceptible to cell-cell variations due to stochastic gene expression. Cell-cell communication offers an efficient strategy to coordinate cellular behavior at the population level. To this end, we review recent advances in engineering cell-cell communication to achieve reliable population dynamics, spanning from communication within single species to multispecies, from one-way sender-receiver communication to two-way communication in synthetic microbial ecosystems. These engineered systems serve as well-defined model systems to better understand design principles of their naturally occurring counterparts and to facilitate novel biotechnology applications.

  4. Microbial fuel cells and microbial ecology: applications in ruminant health and production research.

    PubMed

    Bretschger, Orianna; Osterstock, Jason B; Pinchak, William E; Ishii, Shun'ichi; Nelson, Karen E

    2010-04-01

    Microbial fuel cell (MFC) systems employ the catalytic activity of microbes to produce electricity from the oxidation of organic, and in some cases inorganic, substrates. MFC systems have been primarily explored for their use in bioremediation and bioenergy applications; however, these systems also offer a unique strategy for the cultivation of synergistic microbial communities. It has been hypothesized that the mechanism(s) of microbial electron transfer that enable electricity production in MFCs may be a cooperative strategy within mixed microbial consortia that is associated with, or is an alternative to, interspecies hydrogen (H(2)) transfer. Microbial fermentation processes and methanogenesis in ruminant animals are highly dependent on the consumption and production of H(2)in the rumen. Given the crucial role that H(2) plays in ruminant digestion, it is desirable to understand the microbial relationships that control H(2) partial pressures within the rumen; MFCs may serve as unique tools for studying this complex ecological system. Further, MFC systems offer a novel approach to studying biofilms that form under different redox conditions and may be applied to achieve a greater understanding of how microbial biofilms impact animal health. Here, we present a brief summary of the efforts made towards understanding rumen microbial ecology, microbial biofilms related to animal health, and how MFCs may be further applied in ruminant research.

  5. Microbial Fuel Cells and Microbial Ecology: Applications in Ruminant Health and Production Research

    PubMed Central

    Osterstock, Jason B.; Pinchak, William E.; Ishii, Shun’ichi; Nelson, Karen E.

    2009-01-01

    Microbial fuel cell (MFC) systems employ the catalytic activity of microbes to produce electricity from the oxidation of organic, and in some cases inorganic, substrates. MFC systems have been primarily explored for their use in bioremediation and bioenergy applications; however, these systems also offer a unique strategy for the cultivation of synergistic microbial communities. It has been hypothesized that the mechanism(s) of microbial electron transfer that enable electricity production in MFCs may be a cooperative strategy within mixed microbial consortia that is associated with, or is an alternative to, interspecies hydrogen (H2) transfer. Microbial fermentation processes and methanogenesis in ruminant animals are highly dependent on the consumption and production of H2in the rumen. Given the crucial role that H2 plays in ruminant digestion, it is desirable to understand the microbial relationships that control H2 partial pressures within the rumen; MFCs may serve as unique tools for studying this complex ecological system. Further, MFC systems offer a novel approach to studying biofilms that form under different redox conditions and may be applied to achieve a greater understanding of how microbial biofilms impact animal health. Here, we present a brief summary of the efforts made towards understanding rumen microbial ecology, microbial biofilms related to animal health, and how MFCs may be further applied in ruminant research. PMID:20024685

  6. Interplay between cell growth and cell cycle in plants.

    PubMed

    Sablowski, Robert; Carnier Dornelas, Marcelo

    2014-06-01

    The growth of organs and whole plants depends on both cell growth and cell-cycle progression, but the interaction between both processes is poorly understood. In plants, the balance between growth and cell-cycle progression requires coordinated regulation of four different processes: macromolecular synthesis (cytoplasmic growth), turgor-driven cell-wall extension, mitotic cycle, and endocycle. Potential feedbacks between these processes include a cell-size checkpoint operating before DNA synthesis and a link between DNA contents and maximum cell size. In addition, key intercellular signals and growth regulatory genes appear to target at the same time cell-cycle and cell-growth functions. For example, auxin, gibberellin, and brassinosteroid all have parallel links to cell-cycle progression (through S-phase Cyclin D-CDK and the anaphase-promoting complex) and cell-wall functions (through cell-wall extensibility or microtubule dynamics). Another intercellular signal mediated by microtubule dynamics is the mechanical stress caused by growth of interconnected cells. Superimposed on developmental controls, sugar signalling through the TOR pathway has recently emerged as a central control point linking cytoplasmic growth, cell-cycle and cell-wall functions. Recent progress in quantitative imaging and computational modelling will facilitate analysis of the multiple interconnections between plant cell growth and cell cycle and ultimately will be required for the predictive manipulation of plant growth.

  7. Methanogenesis in membraneless microbial electrolysis cells.

    PubMed

    Clauwaert, Peter; Verstraete, Willy

    2009-04-01

    Operation of microbial electrolysis cells (MECs) without an ion exchange membrane could help to lower the construction costs while lowering the ohmic cell resistance and improving MEC conversion rates by minimizing the pH gradient between anode and cathode. In this research, we demonstrate that membraneless MECs with plain graphite can be operated for methane production without pH adjustment and that the ohmic cell resistance could be lowered with approximately 50% by removing the cation exchange membrane. As a result, the current production increased from 66 +/- 2 to 156 +/- 1 A m(-3) MEC by removing the membrane with an applied voltage of -0.8 V. Methane was the main energetic product despite continuous operation under carbonate-limited and slightly acidified conditions (pH 6.1-6.2). Our results suggest that continuous production of hydrogen in membraneless MECs will be challenging since methane production might not be avoided easily. The electrical energy invested was not always completely recovered under the form of an energy-rich biogas; however, our results indicate that membraneless MECs might be a viable polishing step for the treatment of the effluent of anaerobic digesters as methane was produced under low organic loading conditions and at room temperature.

  8. Sulfur cycling and methanogenesis primarily drive microbial colonization of the highly sulfidic Urania deep hypersaline basin.

    PubMed

    Borin, Sara; Brusetti, Lorenzo; Mapelli, Francesca; D'Auria, Giuseppe; Brusa, Tullio; Marzorati, Massimo; Rizzi, Aurora; Yakimov, Michail; Marty, Danielle; De Lange, Gert J; Van der Wielen, Paul; Bolhuis, Henk; McGenity, Terry J; Polymenakou, Paraskevi N; Malinverno, Elisa; Giuliano, Laura; Corselli, Cesare; Daffonchio, Daniele

    2009-06-09

    Urania basin in the deep Mediterranean Sea houses a lake that is >100 m deep, devoid of oxygen, 6 times more saline than seawater, and has very high levels of methane and particularly sulfide (up to 16 mM), making it among the most sulfidic water bodies on Earth. Along the depth profile there are 2 chemoclines, a steep one with the overlying oxic seawater, and another between anoxic brines of different density, where gradients of salinity, electron donors and acceptors occur. To identify and differentiate the microbes and processes contributing to the turnover of organic matter and sulfide along the water column, these chemoclines were sampled at a high resolution. Bacterial cell numbers increased up to a hundredfold in the chemoclines as a consequence of elevated nutrient availability, with higher numbers in the upper interface where redox gradient was steeper. Bacterial and archaeal communities, analyzed by DNA fingerprinting, 16S rRNA gene libraries, activity measurements, and cultivation, were highly stratified and metabolically more active along the chemoclines compared with seawater or the uniformly hypersaline brines. Detailed analysis of 16S rRNA gene sequences revealed that in both chemoclines delta- and epsilon-Proteobacteria, predominantly sulfate reducers and sulfur oxidizers, respectively, were the dominant bacteria. In the deepest layers of the basin MSBL1, putatively responsible for methanogenesis, dominated among archaea. The data suggest that the complex microbial community is adapted to the basin's extreme chemistry, and the elevated biomass is driven largely by sulfur cycling and methanogenesis.

  9. Fuel cell and advanced turbine power cycle

    SciTech Connect

    White, D.J.

    1995-10-19

    Solar Turbines, Incorporated (Solar) has a vested interest in the integration of gas turbines and high temperature fuel cells and in particular, solid oxide fuel cells (SOFCs). Solar has identified a parallel path approach to the technology developments needed for future products. The primary approach is to move away from the simple cycle industrial machines of the past and develop as a first step more efficient recuperated engines. This move was prompted by the recognition that the simple cycle machines were rapidly approaching their efficiency limits. Improving the efficiency of simple cycle machines is and will become increasingly more costly. Each efficiency increment will be progressively more costly than the previous step.

  10. Soil microbial communities and elk foraging intensity: implications for soil biogeochemical cycling in the sagebrush steppe.

    PubMed

    Cline, Lauren C; Zak, Donald R; Upchurch, Rima A; Freedman, Zachary B; Peschel, Anna R

    2017-02-01

    Foraging intensity of large herbivores may exert an indirect top-down ecological force on soil microbial communities via changes in plant litter inputs. We investigated the responses of the soil microbial community to elk (Cervus elaphus) winter range occupancy across a long-term foraging exclusion experiment in the sagebrush steppe of the North American Rocky Mountains, combining phylogenetic analysis of fungi and bacteria with shotgun metagenomics and extracellular enzyme assays. Winter foraging intensity was associated with reduced bacterial richness and increasingly distinct bacterial communities. Although fungal communities did not respond linearly to foraging intensity, a greater β-diversity response to winter foraging exclusion was observed. Furthermore, winter foraging exclusion increased soil cellulolytic and hemicellulolytic enzyme potential and higher foraging intensity reduced chitinolytic gene abundance. Thus, future changes in winter range occupancy may shape biogeochemical processes via shifts in microbial communities and subsequent changes to their physiological capacities to cycle soil C and N.

  11. Metaproteogenomics reveals the soil microbial communities active in nutrient cycling processes under different tree species

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Keiblinger, Katharina Maria; Masse, Jacynthe; Zühlke, Daniela; Riedel, Katharina; Zechmeister-Boltenstern, Sophie; Prescott, Cindy E.; Grayston, Sue

    2016-04-01

    Tree species exert strong effects on microbial communities in litter and soil and may alter rates of soil processes fundamental to nutrient cycling and carbon fluxes (Prescott and Grayston 2013). However, the influence of tree species on decomposition processes are still contradictory and poorly understood. An understanding of the mechanisms underlying plant influences on soil processes is important for our ability to predict ecosystem response to altered global/environmental conditions. In order to link microbial community structure and function to forest-floor nutrient cycling processes, we sampled forest floors under western redcedar (Thuja plicata), Douglas-fir (Pseudotsuga menziesii) and Sitka spruce (Picea sitchensis) grown in nutrient-poor sites in common garden experiments on Vancouver island (Canada). We measured forest-floor total N, total C, initial NH4+ and NO3- concentrations, DOC, Cmic and Nmic. Gross rates of ammonification and NH4+ consumption were measured using the 15N pool-dilution method. Organic carbon quality was assessed through FTIR analyses. Microbial community structure was analysed by a metaproteogenomic approach using 16S and ITS amplification and sequencing with MiSeq platform. Proteins were extracted and peptides characterized via LC-MS/MS on a Velos Orbitrap to assess the active microbial community. Different microbial communities were active under the three tree species and variation in process rates were observed and will be discussed. This research provides new insights on microbial processes during organic matter decomposition. The metaproteogenomic approach enables us to investigate these changes with respect to possible effects on soil C-storage at even finer taxonomic resolution.

  12. Microbial Community Analysis of a Single Chamber Microbial Fuel Cell Using Potato Wastewater

    SciTech Connect

    Zhen Li; Rishika Haynes; Eugene Sato; Malcolm Shields; Yoshiko Fujita; Chikashi Sato

    2014-04-01

    Microbial fuel cells (MFCs) convert chemical energy to electrical energy via bioelectrochemical reactions mediated by microorganisms. We investigated the diversity of the microbial community in an air cathode single chamber MFC that utilized potato-process wastewater as substrate. Terminal Restriction Fragment Length Polymorphism (T-RFLP) results indicated that the bacterial communities on the anode, cathode, control electrode, and MFC bulk fluid were similar, but differed dramatically from that of the anaerobic domestic sludge and potato wastewater inoculum. The 16S rDNA sequencing results showed that microbial species detected on the anode were predominantly within the phyla of Proteobacteria, Firmicutes, and Bacteroidetes. Fluorescent microscopy results indicated that there was a clear enhancement of biofilm formation on the anode. Results of this study could help improve understanding of the complexity of microbial communities and optimize the microbial composition for generating electricity by MFCs that utilize potato wastewater.

  13. Microbial community analysis of a single chamber microbial fuel cell using potato wastewater.

    PubMed

    Li, Zhen; Haynes, Rishika; Sato, Eugene; Shields, Malcolm S; Fujita, Yoshiko; Sato, Chikashi

    2014-04-01

    Microbial fuel cells (MFCs) convert chemical energy to electrical energy via bio-electrochemical reactions mediated by microorganisms. This study investigated the diversity of the microbial community in an air cathode single chamber MFC that used potato-process wastewater as substrate. Terminal restriction fragment length polymorphism results indicated that the bacterial communities on the anode, cathode, control electrode, and MFC bulk fluid were similar, but differed dramatically from that of the anaerobic domestic sludge and potato wastewater inoculum. The 16S ribosomal DNA sequencing results showed that microbial species detected on the anode were predominantly within the phyla of Proteobacteria, Firmicutes, and Bacteroidetes. Fluorescent microscopy results indicated that there was a clear enhancement of biofilm formation on the anode. Results of this study could help improve understanding of the complexity of microbial communities and optimize the microbial composition for generating electricity by MFCs that use potato wastewater.

  14. Soil microbial community structure and nitrogen cycling responses to agroecosystem management and carbon substrate addition

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Berthrong, S. T.; Buckley, D. H.; Drinkwater, L. E.

    2011-12-01

    Fertilizer application in conventional agriculture leads to N saturation and decoupled soil C and N cycling, whereas organic practices, e.g. complex rotations and legume incorporation, often results in increased SOM and tightly coupled cycles of C and N. These legacy effects of management on soils likely affect microbial community composition and microbial process rates. This project tested if agricultural management practices led to distinct microbial communities and if those communities differed in ability to utilize labile plant carbon substrates and to produce more plant available N. We addressed several specific questions in this project. 1) Do organic and conventional management legacies on similar soils produce distinct soil bacterial and fungal community structures and abundances? 2) How do these microbial community structures change in response to carbon substrate addition? 3) How do the responses of the microbial communities influence N cycling? To address these questions we conducted a laboratory incubation of organically and conventionally managed soils. We added C-13 labelled glucose either in one large dose or several smaller pulses. We extracted genomic DNA from soils before and after incubation for TRFLP community fingerprinting. We measured C in soil pools and respiration and N in soil extracts and leachates. Management led to different compositions of bacteria and fungi driven by distinct components in organic soils. Biomass did not differ across treatments indicating that differences in cycling were due to composition rather than abundance. C substrate addition led to convergence in bacterial communities; however management still strongly influenced the difference in communities. Fungal communities were very distinct between managements and plots with substrate addition not altering this pattern. Organic soils respired 3 times more of the glucose in the first week than conventional soils (1.1% vs 0.4%). Organic soils produced twice as much

  15. Spatial distribution of N-cycling microbial communities showed complex patterns in constructed wetland sediments.

    PubMed

    Correa-Galeote, David; Marco, Diana E; Tortosa, Germán; Bru, David; Philippot, Laurent; Bedmar, Eulogio J

    2013-02-01

    Constructed wetlands are used for biological treatment of wastewater from agricultural lands carrying pollutants such as nitrates. Nitrogen removal in wetlands occurs from direct assimilation by plants and through microbial nitrification and denitrification. We investigated the spatial distribution of N-cycling microbial communities and genes involved in nitrification and denitrification in constructed wetland sediments receiving irrigation water. We used quantitative real-time PCR (qPCR) to characterize microbial communities. Geostatistical variance analysis was used to relate them with vegetation cover and biogeochemical sediment properties. The spatial distribution of the N-cycling microbial communities of sediments was heterogeneous and complex. Total communities of bacteria and crenarchaea showed different spatial distributions. Analysis of autocorrelation patterns through semivariance indicated a tendency towards a patchy distribution over scales around 10 m for genes involved in the nitrification and denitrification processes. In contrast, biogeochemical sediment properties showed diverse spatial distributions. While almost no patchiness was found for pH and moisture, patchiness at scales between 8 and 10 m was detected for carbon, nitrate and ammonia. Denitrification variables showed spatial autocorrelation at scales comparable to genes. However, denitrifying enzyme activity and potential N(2)O production showed a common spatial pattern, different from that of the N(2)O/(N(2)O + N(2)).

  16. Microbial Succession and Nitrogen Cycling in Cultured Biofilms as Affected by the Inorganic Nitrogen Availability.

    PubMed

    Li, Shuangshuang; Peng, Chengrong; Wang, Chun; Zheng, Jiaoli; Hu, Yao; Li, Dunhai

    2017-01-01

    Biofilms play important roles in nutrients and energy cycling in aquatic ecosystems. We hypothesized that as eutrophication could change phytoplankton community and decrease phytoplankton diversity, ambient inorganic nitrogen level will affect the microbial community and diversity of biofilms and the roles of biofilms in nutrient cycling. Biofilms were cultured using a flow incubator either with replete inorganic nitrogen (N-rep) or without exogenous inorganic nitrogen supply (N-def). The results showed that the biomass and nitrogen and phosphorous accumulation of biofilms were limited by N deficiency; however, as expected, the N-def biofilms had significantly higher microbial diversity than that of N-rep biofilms. The microbial community of biofilms shifted in composition and abundance in response to ambient inorganic nitrogen level. For example, as compared between the N-def and the N-rep biofilms, the former consisted of more diazotrophs, while the latter consisted of more denitrifying bacteria. As a result of the shift of the functional microbial community, the N concentration of N-rep medium kept decreasing, while that of N-def medium showed an increasing trend in the late stage. This indicates that biofilms can serve as the source or the sink of nitrogen in aquatic ecosystems, and it depends on the inorganic nitrogen availability.

  17. Acanthamoeba induces cell-cycle arrest in host cells.

    PubMed

    Sissons, James; Alsam, Selwa; Jayasekera, Samantha; Kim, Kwang Sik; Stins, Monique; Khan, Naveed Ahmed

    2004-08-01

    Acanthamoeba can cause fatal granulomatous amoebic encephalitis (GAE) and eye keratitis. However, the pathogenesis and pathophysiology of these emerging diseases remain unclear. In this study, the effects of Acanthamoeba on the host cell cycle using human brain microvascular endothelial cells (HBMEC) and human corneal epithelial cells (HCEC) were determined. Two isolates of Acanthamoeba belonging to the T1 genotype (GAE isolate) and T4 genotype (keratitis isolate) were used, which showed severe cytotoxicity on HBMEC and HCEC, respectively. No tissue specificity was observed in their ability to exhibit binding to the host cells. To determine the effects of Acanthamoeba on the host cell cycle, a cell-cycle-specific gene array was used. This screened for 96 genes specific for host cell-cycle regulation. It was observed that Acanthamoeba inhibited expression of genes encoding cyclins F and G1 and cyclin-dependent kinase 6, which are proteins important for cell-cycle progression. Moreover, upregulation was observed of the expression of genes such as GADD45A and p130 Rb, associated with cell-cycle arrest, indicating cell-cycle inhibition. Next, the effect of Acanthamoeba on retinoblastoma protein (pRb) phosphorylation was determined. pRb is a potent inhibitor of G1-to-S cell-cycle progression; however, its function is inhibited upon phosphorylation, allowing progression into S phase. Western blotting revealed that Acanthamoeba abolished pRb phosphorylation leading to cell-cycle arrest at the G1-to-S transition. Taken together, these studies demonstrated for the first time that Acanthamoeba inhibits the host cell cycle at the transcriptional level, as well as by modulating pRb phosphorylation using host cell-signalling mechanisms. A complete understanding of Acanthamoeba-host cell interactions may help in developing novel strategies to treat Acanthamoeba infections.

  18. Over-pressurized bioreactors: application to microbial cell cultures.

    PubMed

    Lopes, Marlene; Belo, Isabel; Mota, Manuel

    2014-01-01

    In industrial biotechnology, microbial cultures are exposed to different local pressures inside bioreactors. Depending on the microbial species and strains, the increased pressure may have detrimental or beneficial effects on cellular growth and product formation. In this review, the effects of increased air pressure on various microbial cultures growing in bioreactors under moderate total pressure conditions (maximum, 15 bar) will be discussed. Recent data illustrating the diversity of increased air pressure effects at different levels in microbial cells cultivation will be presented, with particular attention to the effects of oxygen and carbon dioxide partial pressures on cellular growth and product formation, and the concomitant effect of oxygen pressure on antioxidant cellular defense mechanisms.

  19. Modeling carbon cycle responses to tree mortality: linking microbial and biogeochemical changes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Moore, D. J.; Trahan, N. A.; Dynes, E. L.; Zobitz, J. M.; Gallery, R.

    2013-12-01

    Amid a worldwide increase in tree mortality, mountain pine beetles (Dendroctonus ponderosae Hopkins) have killed billions of trees from Mexico to Alaska in the last 13 years. This mortality is predicted to influence important carbon, water and energy balance feedbacks on the Earth system. We studied changes in soil biogeochemical cycling and microbial community structure after tree mortality. We show, using a decade long chronosequence, that tree mortality causes no increase in total respiration from local to watershed scales, with corresponding changes in biogeochemical pools of nitrogen and phosphorus. We also found comparable declines in both gross primary productivity and respiration suggesting little change in net flux. We tested the mechanisms controlling these patterns using an ecosystem model; contrasting a simplified microbial subroutine with a 'dead soil' model. We coupled our modeling work with direct measurements of microbial biomass, enzyme kinetics and community structure. The transitory recovery of respiration 6-7 years after mortality was associated with increased microbial biomass, increased incorporation of leaf litter carbon into soil organic matter, and was followed by a secondary decline in respiration during years 8-10. Our findings are consistent with the mechanism of reduced input of new carbon causing a decline in microbial biomass rather than an increased output of older carbon.

  20. Anammox revisited: thermodynamic considerations in early studies of the microbial nitrogen cycle.

    PubMed

    Oren, Aharon

    2015-08-01

    This paper explores the early literature on the thermodynamics of processes in the microbial nitrogen cycle, evaluating parameters of transfer of energy which depends on the initial and final states of the system, the mechanism of the reactions involved and the rates of these reactions. Processes discussed include the anaerobic oxidation of ammonium (the anammox reaction), the use of inorganic nitrogen compounds as electron donors for anoxygenic photosynthesis, and the mechanism and bioenergetics of biological nitrogen fixation.

  1. Assessment of soil potential for microbial nitrogen cycling using quantitative PCR

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pereg, Lily; McMillan, Mary; Aldorri, Sind

    2016-04-01

    Nitrogen is an important nutrient for the synthesis of macromolecules, such as nucleic acids and proteins, in all organisms. Nitrogen cycling is essential for the production of different forms of nitrogenous molecules used by various organisms in the soil as available nitrogen sources. While nitrogen-fixing bacteria can utilize N2 as a nitrogen source, other microbes and plants need to assimilate N from fixed forms, e.g. ammonia or nitrate. Nitrogen cycling is largely derived by microbial activity in the soil. Examples include the reduction of N2 to ammonia by nitrogen fixation, production of nitrate by nitrification and the removal of available nitrogenous compounds by denitrification. We measured the potential of agricultural soils under various management practices to cycle nitrogen by measuring the abundance of functional genes involved in the nitrogen cycle. We report on the suitability of PCR-based methods as indicators of soil function potential.

  2. Cycle life test of secondary spacecraft cells

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Harkness, J. D.

    1980-01-01

    The results of the life cycling program on rechargeable calls are reported. Information on required data, the use of which the data will be put, application details, including orbital description, charge control methods, load rquirements, etc., are given. Cycle tests were performed on 660 sealed, nickel cadmium cells. The cells consisted of seven sample classifications ranging form 3.0 to 20 amp. hours. Nickel cadmium, silver cadmium, and silver zinc sealed cells, excluding synchronous orbit and accelerated test packs were added. The capacities of the nickel cadmium cells, the silver cadmium and the silver zinc cells differed in range of amp hrs. The cells were cylced under different load, charge control, and temperature conditions. All cell packs are recharged by use of a pack voltage limit. All charging is constant current until the voltage limit is reached.

  3. Power overshoot in two-chambered microbial fuel cell (MFC).

    PubMed

    Nien, Po-Chin; Lee, Chin-Yu; Ho, Kuo-Chuan; Adav, Sunil S; Liu, Lihong; Wang, Aijie; Ren, Nanqi; Lee, Duu-Jong

    2011-04-01

    A two-chamber microbial fuel cell was started using iron-reducing strains as inoculum and acetate as carbon sources. The tested microbial fuel cell had an open-circuit voltage of 0.67 V, and reached 1045 mA m(-2) and a power density of 486 mW m(-2) at 0.46 V before power overshoot occurred. Anodic reactions were identified as the rate-determining steps. Stirring the anolyte insignificantly increased cell performance, suggesting a minimal external mass transfer resistance from the anolyte to the anodic biofilm. Data regression analysis indicates that charge transfer resistance at the biofilm-anode junction was negligible. The order of magnitude estimation of electrical conductance indicates that electron transfer resistance had an insignificant effect on microbial fuel cell performance. Resistance in electrogens for substrate utilization is proposed to induce microbial fuel cell power overshoot.

  4. Microbial community structure elucidates performance of Glyceria maxima plant microbial fuel cell.

    PubMed

    Timmers, Ruud A; Rothballer, Michael; Strik, David P B T B; Engel, Marion; Schulz, Stephan; Schloter, Michael; Hartmann, Anton; Hamelers, Bert; Buisman, Cees

    2012-04-01

    The plant microbial fuel cell (PMFC) is a technology in which living plant roots provide electron donor, via rhizodeposition, to a mixed microbial community to generate electricity in a microbial fuel cell. Analysis and localisation of the microbial community is necessary for gaining insight into the competition for electron donor in a PMFC. This paper characterises the anode-rhizosphere bacterial community of a Glyceria maxima (reed mannagrass) PMFC. Electrochemically active bacteria (EAB) were located on the root surfaces, but they were more abundant colonising the graphite granular electrode. Anaerobic cellulolytic bacteria dominated the area where most of the EAB were found, indicating that the current was probably generated via the hydrolysis of cellulose. Due to the presence of oxygen and nitrate, short-chain fatty acid-utilising denitrifiers were the major competitors for the electron donor. Acetate-utilising methanogens played a minor role in the competition for electron donor, probably due to the availability of graphite granules as electron acceptors.

  5. Anodic and cathodic microbial communities in single chamber microbial fuel cells.

    PubMed

    Daghio, Matteo; Gandolfi, Isabella; Bestetti, Giuseppina; Franzetti, Andrea; Guerrini, Edoardo; Cristiani, Pierangela

    2015-01-25

    Microbial fuel cells (MFCs) are a rapidly growing technology for energy production from wastewater and biomasses. In a MFC, a microbial biofilm oxidizes organic matter and transfers electrons from reduced compounds to an anode as the electron acceptor by extracellular electron transfer (EET). The aim of this work was to characterize the microbial communities operating in a Single Chamber Microbial Fuel Cell (SCMFC) fed with acetate and inoculated with a biogas digestate in order to gain more insight into anodic and cathodic EET. Taxonomic characterization of the communities was carried out by Illumina sequencing of a fragment of the 16S rRNA gene. Microorganisms belonging to Geovibrio genus and purple non-sulfur (PNS) bacteria were found to be dominant in the anodic biofilm. The alkaliphilic genus Nitrincola and anaerobic microorganisms belonging to Porphyromonadaceae family were the most abundant bacteria in the cathodic biofilm.

  6. Studying Microbial Mat Functioning Amidst "Unexpected Diversity": Methodological Approaches and Initial Results from Metatranscriptomes of Mats Over Diel cycles, iTags from Long Term Manipulations, and Biogeochemical Cycling in Simplified Microbial Mats Constructed from Cultures

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bebout, B.; Bebout, L. E.; Detweiler, A. M.; Everroad, R. C.; Lee, J.; Pett-Ridge, J.; Weber, P. K.

    2014-12-01

    Microbial mats are famously amongst the most diverse microbial ecosystems on Earth, inhabiting some of the most inclement environments known, including hypersaline, dry, hot, cold, nutrient poor, and high UV environments. The high microbial diversity of microbial mats makes studies of microbial ecology notably difficult. To address this challenge, we have been using a combination of metagenomics, metatranscriptomics, iTags and culture-based simplified microbial mats to study biogeochemical cycling (H2 production, N2 fixation, and fermentation) in microbial mats collected from Elkhorn Slough, Monterey Bay, California. Metatranscriptomes of microbial mats incubated over a diel cycle have revealed that a number of gene systems activate only during the day in Cyanobacteria, while the remaining appear to be constitutive. The dominant cyanobacterium in the mat (Microcoleus chthonoplastes) expresses several pathways for nitrogen scavenging undocumented in cultured strains, as well as the expression of two starch storage and utilization cycles. Community composition shifts in response to long term manipulations of mats were assessed using iTags. Changes in community diversity were observed as hydrogen fluxes increased in response to a lowering of sulfate concentrations. To produce simplified microbial mats, we have isolated members of 13 of the 15 top taxa from our iTag libraries into culture. Simplified microbial mats and simple co-cultures and consortia constructed from these isolates reproduce many of the natural patterns of biogeochemical cycling in the parent natural microbial mats, but against a background of far lower overall diversity, simplifying studies of changes in gene expression (over the short term), interactions between community members, and community composition changes (over the longer term), in response to environmental forcing.

  7. AC power generation from microbial fuel cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lobo, Fernanda Leite; Wang, Heming; Forrestal, Casey; Ren, Zhiyong Jason

    2015-11-01

    Microbial fuel cells (MFCs) directly convert biodegradable substrates to electricity and carry good potential for energy-positive wastewater treatment. However, the low and direct current (DC) output from MFC is not usable for general electronics except small sensors, yet commercial DC-AC converters or inverters used in solar systems cannot be directly applied to MFCs. This study presents a new DC-AC converter system for MFCs that can generate alternating voltage in any desired frequency. Results show that AC power can be easily achieved in three different frequencies tested (1, 10, 60 Hz), and no energy storage layer such as capacitors was needed. The DC-AC converter efficiency was higher than 95% when powered by either individual MFCs or simple MFC stacks. Total harmonic distortion (THD) was used to investigate the quality of the energy, and it showed that the energy could be directly usable for linear electronic loads. This study shows that through electrical conversion MFCs can be potentially used in household electronics for decentralized off-grid communities.

  8. Modeling of Sonos Memory Cell Erase Cycle

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Phillips, Thomas A.; MacLeond, Todd C.; Ho, Fat D.

    2010-01-01

    Silicon-oxide-nitride-oxide-silicon (SONOS) nonvolatile semiconductor memories (NVSMS) have many advantages. These memories are electrically erasable programmable read-only memories (EEPROMs). They utilize low programming voltages, endure extended erase/write cycles, are inherently resistant to radiation, and are compatible with high-density scaled CMOS for low power, portable electronics. The SONOS memory cell erase cycle was investigated using a nonquasi-static (NQS) MOSFET model. The SONOS floating gate charge and voltage, tunneling current, threshold voltage, and drain current were characterized during an erase cycle. Comparisons were made between the model predictions and experimental device data.

  9. Rapid Prototyping of Microbial Cell Factories via Genome-scale Engineering

    PubMed Central

    Si, Tong; Xiao, Han; Zhao, Huimin

    2014-01-01

    Advances in reading, writing and editing genetic materials have greatly expanded our ability to reprogram biological systems at the resolution of a single nucleotide and on the scale of a whole genome. Such capacity has greatly accelerated the cycles of design, build and test to engineer microbes for efficient synthesis of fuels, chemicals and drugs. In this review, we summarize the emerging technologies that have been applied, or are potentially useful for genome-scale engineering in microbial systems. We will focus on the development of high-throughput methodologies, which may accelerate the prototyping of microbial cell factories. PMID:25450192

  10. Rapid prototyping of microbial cell factories via genome-scale engineering.

    PubMed

    Si, Tong; Xiao, Han; Zhao, Huimin

    2015-11-15

    Advances in reading, writing and editing genetic materials have greatly expanded our ability to reprogram biological systems at the resolution of a single nucleotide and on the scale of a whole genome. Such capacity has greatly accelerated the cycles of design, build and test to engineer microbes for efficient synthesis of fuels, chemicals and drugs. In this review, we summarize the emerging technologies that have been applied, or are potentially useful for genome-scale engineering in microbial systems. We will focus on the development of high-throughput methodologies, which may accelerate the prototyping of microbial cell factories.

  11. The microbial methane cycle in subsurface sediments. Final project report, July 1, 1993--August 31, 1997

    SciTech Connect

    Grossman, E.L.; Ammerman, J.W.; Suflita, J.M.

    1997-12-31

    The objectives of this study were to determine the factors controlling microbial activity and survival in the subsurface and, specifically, to determine whether microbial communities in aquitards and in aquifer microenvironments provide electron donors and/or acceptors that enhance microbial survival in aquifers. Although the original objectives were to focus on methane cycling, the authors pursued an opportunity to study sulfur cycling in aquifer systems, a process of much greater importance in microbial activity and survival, and in the mobility of metals in the subsurface. Furthermore, sulfur cycling is pertinent to the Subsurface Science Program`s study at Cerro Negro, New Mexico. The study combined field and laboratory approaches and microbiological, molecular, geochemical, and hydrogeological techniques. During drilling operations, sediments were collected aseptically and assayed for a variety of microorganisms and metabolic capabilities including total counts, viable aerobic heterotrophs, total anaerobic heterotrophs, sulfate reducing bacteria (SRB) and sulfate reduction activity (in situ and in slurries), methanogens, methanotrophs, and Fe- and S-oxidizers, among others. Geochemical analyses of sediments included organic carbon content and {sup 13}C/{sup 12}C ratio, sulfur chemistry (reduced sulfur, sulfate), {sup 34}S/{sup 32}S, {sup 13}C/{sup 12}C, {sup 14}C, tritium, etc. The authors drilled eight boreholes in the Eocene Yegua formation at four localities on the Texas A&M University campus using a hollow-stem auger drilling rig. The drilling pattern forms a T, with three well clusters along the dip direction and two along strike. Four boreholes were sampled for sediments and screened at the deepest sand interval encountered, and four boreholes were drilled to install wells in shallower sands. Boreholes range in depth from 8 to 31 m, with screened intervals ranging from 6 to 31 m. Below are the results of these field studies.

  12. Parvovirus infection-induced cell death and cell cycle arrest

    PubMed Central

    Chen, Aaron Yun; Qiu, Jianming

    2011-01-01

    The cytopathic effects induced during parvovirus infection have been widely documented. Parvovirus infection-induced cell death is often directly associated with disease outcomes (e.g., anemia resulting from loss of erythroid progenitors during parvovirus B19 infection). Apoptosis is the major form of cell death induced by parvovirus infection. However, nonapoptotic cell death, namely necrosis, has also been reported during infection of the minute virus of mice, parvovirus H-1 and bovine parvovirus. Recent studies have revealed multiple mechanisms underlying the cell death during parvovirus infection. These mechanisms vary in different parvoviruses, although the large nonstructural protein (NS)1 and the small NS proteins (e.g., the 11 kDa of parvovirus B19), as well as replication of the viral genome, are responsible for causing infection-induced cell death. Cell cycle arrest is also common, and contributes to the cytopathic effects induced during parvovirus infection. While viral NS proteins have been indicated to induce cell cycle arrest, increasing evidence suggests that a cellular DNA damage response triggered by an invading single-stranded parvoviral genome is the major inducer of cell cycle arrest in parvovirus-infected cells. Apparently, in response to infection, cell death and cell cycle arrest of parvovirus-infected cells are beneficial to the viral cell lifecycle (e.g., viral DNA replication and virus egress). In this article, we will discuss recent advances in the understanding of the mechanisms underlying parvovirus infection-induced cell death and cell cycle arrest. PMID:21331319

  13. Cell-based detection of microbial biomaterial contaminations.

    PubMed

    Roch, Toralf; Ma, Nan; Kratz, Karl; Lendlein, Andreas

    2015-01-01

    A major challenge in biomaterial synthesis and functionalization is the prevention of microbial contaminations such as endotoxins (lipopolysaccharides (LPS)). In addition to LPS, which are exclusively expressed by Gram negative bacteria, also other microbial products derived from fungi or Gram positive bacteria can be found as contaminations in research laboratories. Typically, the Limulus amebocyte lysate (LAL)-test is used to determine the endotoxin levels of medical devices. However, this test fails to detect material-bound LPS and other microbial contaminations and, as demonstrated in this study, detects LPS from various bacterial species with different sensitivities.In this work, a cell-based assay using genetically engineered RAW macrophages, which detect not only soluble but also material-bound microbial contaminations is introduced.The sensitivity of this cell-line towards different LPS species and different heat-inactivated microbes was investigated. As proof of principle a soft hydrophobic poly(n-butyl acrylate) network (cPnBA), which may due to adhesive properties strongly bind microbes, was deliberately contaminated with heat-inactivated bacteria. While the LAL-test failed to detect the microbial contamination, the cell-based assay clearly detected material-bound microbial contaminations. Our data demonstrate that a cell-based detection system should routinely be used as supplement to the LAL-test to determine microbial contaminations of biomaterials.

  14. Microalgae-microbial fuel cell: A mini review.

    PubMed

    Lee, Duu-Jong; Chang, Jo-Shu; Lai, Juin-Yih

    2015-12-01

    Microalgae-microbial fuel cells (mMFCs) are a device that can convert solar energy to electrical energy via biological pathways. This mini-review lists new research and development works on microalgae processes, microbial fuel cell (MFC) processes, and their combined version, mMFC. The substantial improvement and technological advancement are highlighted, with a discussion on the challenges and prospects for possible commercialization of mMFC technologies.

  15. [Biomass energy utilization in microbial fuel cells: potentials and challenges].

    PubMed

    Huang, Liping; Cheng, Shaoan

    2010-07-01

    Microbial fuel cells (MFCs) that can harvest biomass energy from organic wastes through microbial catalysis have garnered more and more attention within the past decade due to its potential benefits to ecological environment. In this article, the updated progress in MFCs is reviewed, with a focus on frontier technologies such as chamber configurations, feedstock varieties and the integration of MFCs with microbial electrolysis cells for hydrogen production. And on the other hand, the challenges like development of cost-effective electrode materials, improvement of biomass energy recovery and power output, design and optimization of commercial MFC devices are presented.

  16. Insights on the marine microbial nitrogen cycle from isotopic approaches to nitrification.

    PubMed

    Casciotti, Karen L; Buchwald, Carolyn

    2012-01-01

    The microbial nitrogen (N) cycle involves a variety of redox processes that control the availability and speciation of N in the environment and that are involved with the production of nitrous oxide (N(2)O), a climatically important greenhouse gas. Isotopic measurements of ammonium (NH(+) (4)), nitrite (NO(-) (2)), nitrate (NO(-) (3)), and N(2)O can now be used to track the cycling of these compounds and to infer their sources and sinks, which has lead to new and exciting discoveries. For example, dual isotope measurements of NO(-) (3) and NO(-) (2) have shown that there is NO(-) (3) regeneration in the ocean's euphotic zone, as well as in and around oxygen deficient zones (ODZs), indicating that nitrification may play more roles in the ocean's N cycle than generally thought. Likewise, the inverse isotope effect associated with NO(-) (2) oxidation yields unique information about the role of this process in NO(-) (2) cycling in the primary and secondary NO(-) (2) maxima. Finally, isotopic measurements of N(2)O in the ocean are indicative of an important role for nitrification in its production. These interpretations rely on knowledge of the isotope effects for the underlying microbial processes, in particular ammonia oxidation and nitrite oxidation. Here we review the isotope effects involved with the nitrification process and the insights provided by this information, then provide a prospectus for future work in this area.

  17. The Microbial Sulfur Cycle at Extremely Haloalkaline Conditions of Soda Lakes

    PubMed Central

    Sorokin, Dimitry Y.; Kuenen, J. Gijs; Muyzer, Gerard

    2011-01-01

    Soda lakes represent a unique ecosystem with extremely high pH (up to 11) and salinity (up to saturation) due to the presence of high concentrations of sodium carbonate in brines. Despite these double extreme conditions, most of the lakes are highly productive and contain a fully functional microbial system. The microbial sulfur cycle is among the most active in soda lakes. One of the explanations for that is high-energy efficiency of dissimilatory conversions of inorganic sulfur compounds, both oxidative and reductive, sufficient to cope with costly life at double extreme conditions. The oxidative part of the sulfur cycle is driven by chemolithoautotrophic haloalkaliphilic sulfur-oxidizing bacteria (SOB), which are unique for soda lakes. The haloalkaliphilic SOB are present in the surface sediment layer of various soda lakes at high numbers of up to 106 viable cells/cm3. The culturable forms are so far represented by four novel genera within the Gammaproteobacteria, including the genera Thioalkalivibrio, Thioalkalimicrobium, Thioalkalispira, and Thioalkalibacter. The latter two were only found occasionally and each includes a single species, while the former two are widely distributed in various soda lakes over the world. The genus Thioalkalivibrio is the most physiologically diverse and covers the whole spectrum of salt/pH conditions present in soda lakes. Most importantly, the dominant subgroup of this genus is able to grow in saturated soda brines containing 4 M total Na+ – a so far unique property for any known aerobic chemolithoautotroph. Furthermore, some species can use thiocyanate as a sole energy source and three out of nine species can grow anaerobically with nitrogen oxides as electron acceptor. The reductive part of the sulfur cycle is active in the anoxic layers of the sediments of soda lakes. The in situ measurements of sulfate reduction rates and laboratory experiments with sediment slurries using sulfate, thiosulfate, or elemental sulfur as

  18. The microbial sulfur cycle at extremely haloalkaline conditions of soda lakes.

    PubMed

    Sorokin, Dimitry Y; Kuenen, J Gijs; Muyzer, Gerard

    2011-01-01

    Soda lakes represent a unique ecosystem with extremely high pH (up to 11) and salinity (up to saturation) due to the presence of high concentrations of sodium carbonate in brines. Despite these double extreme conditions, most of the lakes are highly productive and contain a fully functional microbial system. The microbial sulfur cycle is among the most active in soda lakes. One of the explanations for that is high-energy efficiency of dissimilatory conversions of inorganic sulfur compounds, both oxidative and reductive, sufficient to cope with costly life at double extreme conditions. The oxidative part of the sulfur cycle is driven by chemolithoautotrophic haloalkaliphilic sulfur-oxidizing bacteria (SOB), which are unique for soda lakes. The haloalkaliphilic SOB are present in the surface sediment layer of various soda lakes at high numbers of up to 10(6) viable cells/cm(3). The culturable forms are so far represented by four novel genera within the Gammaproteobacteria, including the genera Thioalkalivibrio, Thioalkalimicrobium, Thioalkalispira, and Thioalkalibacter. The latter two were only found occasionally and each includes a single species, while the former two are widely distributed in various soda lakes over the world. The genus Thioalkalivibrio is the most physiologically diverse and covers the whole spectrum of salt/pH conditions present in soda lakes. Most importantly, the dominant subgroup of this genus is able to grow in saturated soda brines containing 4 M total Na(+) - a so far unique property for any known aerobic chemolithoautotroph. Furthermore, some species can use thiocyanate as a sole energy source and three out of nine species can grow anaerobically with nitrogen oxides as electron acceptor. The reductive part of the sulfur cycle is active in the anoxic layers of the sediments of soda lakes. The in situ measurements of sulfate reduction rates and laboratory experiments with sediment slurries using sulfate, thiosulfate, or elemental sulfur as

  19. Implementation of microbial fuel cell in harvesting energy using wastewater

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ramli, N. L.; Wahab, M. S. Abdul; Sharif, S. A. Md; Ramly, N. H.

    2016-02-01

    In this century, most of the companies use the electricity from the fossils fuels such as oil, gas and coal. This method will give negative impact to the environment and the fossils fuel will be run out. This project is to develop a microbial fuels cell that can produce electricity. There are several types of the microbial fuel cell, which are a single chamber, double chamber and continuous. In this paper, the double chamber microbial fuel cell was selected to investigate the effect of suspended sludge into the double chamber microbial fuels cell. The salt bridge will construct between both chambers of the double chamber microbial fuels cell. Carbon graphite rod is selected as an electrode at the cathode and anode to transfer the electron from the anode to the cathode. Electricity is generated from the anaerobic oxidation of organic matter by bacteria. At the end of this project, the microbial fuels cell was successful in generating electricity that can be used for a specific application.

  20. SAFT nickel hydrogen cell cycling status

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Borthomieu, Yannick; Duquesne, Didier

    1994-01-01

    An overview of the NiH2 cell development is given. The NiH2 SAFT system is an electrochemical (single or dual) stack (IPV). The stack is mounted in an hydroformed Inconel 718 vessel operating at high pressure, equipped with 'rabbit ears' ceramic brazed electrical feedthroughs. The cell design is described: positive electrode, negative electrode, and stack configuration. Overviews of low earth orbit and geostationary earth orbit cyclings are provided. DPA results are also provided. The cycling and DPA results demonstrate that SAFT NiH2 is characterized by high reliability and very stable performances.

  1. Primary Succession of Nitrogen Cycling Microbial Communities Along the Deglaciated Forelands of Tianshan Mountain, China

    PubMed Central

    Zeng, Jun; Lou, Kai; Zhang, Cui-Jing; Wang, Jun-Tao; Hu, Hang-Wei; Shen, Ju-Pei; Zhang, Li-Mei; Han, Li-Li; Zhang, Tao; Lin, Qin; Chalk, Phillip M.; He, Ji-Zheng

    2016-01-01

    Structural succession and its driving factors for nitrogen (N) cycling microbial communities during the early stages of soil development (0–44 years) were studied along a chronosequence in the glacial forelands of the Tianshan Mountain No.1 glacier in the arid and semi-arid region of central Asia. We assessed the abundance and population of functional genes affiliated with N-fixation (nifH), nitrification (bacterial and archaeal amoA), and denitrification (nirK/S and nosZ) in a glacier foreland using molecular methods. The abundance of functional genes significantly increased with soil development. N cycling community compositions were also significantly shifted within 44 years and were structured by successional age. Cyanobacterial nifH gene sequences were the most dominant N fixing bacteria and its relative abundance increased from 56.8–93.2% along the chronosequence. Ammonia-oxidizing communities shifted from the Nitrososphaera cluster (AOA-amoA) and the Nitrosospira cluster ME (AOB-aomA) in younger soils (0 and 5 years) to communities dominated by soil and sediment 1 (AOA-amoA) and Nitrosospira Cluster 2 Related (AOB-aomA) in older soils (≥17 years). Most of the denitrifers closest relatives were potential aerobic denitrifying bacteria, and some other types of denitrifying bacteria (like autotrophic nitrate-reducing, sulfide-oxidizing bacteria and denitrifying phosphorus removing bacteria) were also detected in all soil samples. The regression analysis showed that N cycling microbial communities were dominant in younger soils (0–5 years) and significantly correlated with soil total carbon, while communities that were most abundant in older soils were significantly correlated with soil total nitrogen. These results suggested that the shift of soil C and N contents during the glacial retreat significantly influenced the abundance, composition and diversity of N cycling microbial communities. PMID:27625641

  2. Microbial H2 cycling does not affect δ2H values of ground water

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Landmeyer, J.E.; Chapelle, F.H.; Bradley, P.M.

    2000-01-01

    Stable hydrogen-isotope values of ground water (δ2H) and dissolved hydrogen concentrations (H(2(aq)) were quantified in a petroleum-hydrocarbon contaminated aquifer to determine whether the production/consumption of H2 by subsurface microorganisms affects ground water &delta2H values. The range of &delta2H observed in monitoring wells sampled (-27.8 ‰c to -15.5 ‰c) was best explained, however, by seasonal differences in recharge temperature as indicated using ground water δ18O values, rather than isotopic exchange reactions involving the microbial cycling of H2 during anaerobic petroleum-hydrocarbon biodegradation. The absence of a measurable hydrogen-isotope exchange between microbially cycled H2 and ground water reflects the fact that the amount of H2 available from the anaerobic decomposition of petroleum hydrocarbons is small relative to the amount of hydrogen present in water, even though milligram per liter concentrations of readily biodegradable contaminants are present at the study site. Additionally, isotopic fractionation calculations indicate that in order for H2 cycling processes to affect δ2H values of ground water, relatively high concentrations of H2 (>0.080 M) would have to be maintained, considerably higher than the 0.2 to 26 nM present at this site and characteristic of anaerobic conditions in general. These observations suggest that the conventional approach of using δ2H and δ18O values to determine recharge history is appropriate even for those ground water systems characterized by anaerobic conditions and extensive microbial H2 cycling.

  3. Existing and emerging technologies that exploit sulfur cycling bacteria in subsurface petroleum reservoir microbial communities (Invited)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hubert, C. R.

    2013-12-01

    Fossil fuels remain by far our most important energy resources, providing around 90% of global primary energy supply. In the coming decadal transition between petroleum reliance and a more sustainable energy future we must increasingly view our vital petroleum reserves as microbial ecosystems that can be engineered to responsibly and creatively meet the energy needs of societies worldwide. In this way, the bioenergy agenda must interface with the traditional geoenergy industry and the challenges it faces. Bioengineering and deep biosphere geomicrobiology focus on the ecophysiology and biogeography of microorganisms in subsurface habitats including marine sediments and petroleum reservoirs. Understanding microbial communities in fossil fuel deposits will allow their distribution and catalytic potential to be exploited as geobiotechnologies that target known problem areas including sulfur cycle management related to biodesulfurization of heavy oils and reservoir souring control via nitrate injection, as well as promising emerging directions such as understanding subsurface geofluid dispersal vectors that could enable microbes to be used as bio-indicators in offshore oil and gas exploration. Results related to different research themes within contemporary petroleum geomicrobiology and bioengineering at Newcastle University will be presented with a focus on microorganisms involved in sulfur cycling that are commonly detected in different oil field microbial communities including mesophilic sulfide-oxidizing Epsilonproteobacteria and thermophilic sulfate-reducers belonging to the genus Desulfotomaculum.

  4. [Microbial community abundance and diversity in typical karst ecosystem to indicate soil carbon cycle].

    PubMed

    Jin, Zhen-Jiang; Tang, Hua-Feng; Li, Min; Huang, Bing-Fu; Li, Qiang; Zhang, Jia-Yu; Li, Gui-Wen

    2014-11-01

    The soil microbial characteristics were detected to clarify their indications in organic carbon cycle in karst system. Soil samples from three karst types (saddle, depression and slop) at 0-10 cm, 10-20 cm and 20-30 cm layers were collected in the Yaji Karst Experimental Site, a typical karst ecosystem. The microbial diversity and abundance were assayed using polymerase chain reaction-denaturing gradient gel electrophoresis (PCR-DGGE) and fluorescence quantitative PCR. The data showed that the highest abundance of 16S rRNA and 18S rRNA were in depression with 1.32 x 10(11) copies x g(-1) and in saddle with 1.12 x 10(10) copies x g(-1), respectively. The abundance of 16S rRNA in saddle and depression decreased from top to bottom, while that of 18S rRNA in three karst forms decreased, which showed that the abundance changed consistently with soil organic carbon (SOC). The 3 diversity indices of 16S rRNA and 6 diversity indices of 18S rRNA increased from top to bottom in soil profiles of three karst forms. These results showed that microbial diversity changed conversely with the abundance and SOC in soil profile. It can be concluded that the abundance was more important than the diversity index for soil carbon cycle in karst system.

  5. Analysis of oxygen reduction and microbial community of air-diffusion biocathode in microbial fuel cells.

    PubMed

    Wang, Zejie; Zheng, Yue; Xiao, Yong; Wu, Song; Wu, Yicheng; Yang, Zhaohui; Zhao, Feng

    2013-09-01

    Microbes play irreplaceable role in oxygen reduction reaction of biocathode in microbial fuel cells (MFCs). In this study, air-diffusion biocathode MFCs were set up for accelerating oxygen reduction and microbial community analysis. Linear sweep voltammetry and Tafel curve confirmed the function of cathode biofilm to catalyze oxygen reduction. Microbial community analysis revealed higher diversity and richness of community in plankton than in biofilm. Proteobacteria was the shared predominant phylum in both biofilm and plankton (39.9% and 49.8%) followed by Planctomycetes (29.9%) and Bacteroidetes (13.3%) in biofilm, while Bacteroidetes (28.2%) in plankton. Minor fraction (534, 16.4%) of the total operational taxonomic units (3252) was overlapped demonstrating the disproportionation of bacterial distribution in biofilm and plankton. Pseudomonadales, Rhizobiales and Sphingobacteriales were exoelectrogenic orders in the present study. The research obtained deep insight of microbial community and provided more comprehensive information on uncultured rare bacteria.

  6. Yeast surface display of dehydrogenases in microbial fuel-cells.

    PubMed

    Gal, Idan; Schlesinger, Orr; Amir, Liron; Alfonta, Lital

    2016-12-01

    Two dehydrogenases, cellobiose dehydrogenase from Corynascus thermophilus and pyranose dehydrogenase from Agaricus meleagris, were displayed for the first time on the surface of Saccharomyces cerevisiae using the yeast surface display system. Surface displayed dehydrogenases were used in a microbial fuel cell and generated high power outputs. Surface displayed cellobiose dehydrogenase has demonstrated a midpoint potential of -28mV (vs. Ag/AgCl) at pH=6.5 and was used in a mediator-less anode compartment of a microbial fuel cell producing a power output of 3.3μWcm(-2) using lactose as fuel. Surface-displayed pyranose dehydrogenase was used in a microbial fuel cell and generated high power outputs using different substrates, the highest power output that was achieved was 3.9μWcm(-2) using d-xylose. These results demonstrate that surface displayed cellobiose dehydrogenase and pyranose dehydrogenase may successfully be used in microbial bioelectrochemical systems.

  7. Rapid detection of microbial cell abundance in aquatic systems.

    PubMed

    Rocha, Andrea M; Yuan, Quan; Close, Dan M; O'Dell, Kaela B; Fortney, Julian L; Wu, Jayne; Hazen, Terry C

    2016-11-15

    The detection and quantification of naturally occurring microbial cellular densities is an essential component of environmental systems monitoring. While there are a number of commonly utilized approaches for monitoring microbial abundance, capacitance-based biosensors represent a promising approach because of their low-cost and label-free detection of microbial cells, but are not as well characterized as more traditional methods. Here, we investigate the applicability of enhanced alternating current electrokinetics (ACEK) capacitive sensing as a new application for rapidly detecting and quantifying microbial cellular densities in cultured and environmentally sourced aquatic samples. ACEK capacitive sensor performance was evaluated using two distinct and dynamic systems - the Great Australian Bight and groundwater from the Oak Ridge Reservation in Oak Ridge, TN. Results demonstrate that ACEK capacitance-based sensing can accurately determine microbial cell counts throughout cellular concentrations typically encountered in naturally occurring microbial communities (10(3)-10(6) cells/mL). A linear relationship was observed between cellular density and capacitance change correlations, allowing a simple linear curve fitting equation to be used for determining microbial abundances in unknown samples. This work provides a foundation for understanding the limits of capacitance-based sensing in natural environmental samples and supports future efforts focusing on evaluating the robustness ACEK capacitance-based within aquatic environments.

  8. Control of cell cycle and cell growth by molecular chaperones.

    PubMed

    Aldea, Martí; Garí, Eloi; Colomina, Neus

    2007-11-01

    Cells adapt their size to both intrinsic and extrinsic demands and, among them, those that stem from growth and proliferation rates are crucial for cell size homeostasis. Here we revisit mechanisms that regulate cell cycle and cell growth in budding yeast. Cyclin Cln3, the most upstream activator of Start, is retained at the endoplasmic reticulum in early G(1) and released by specific chaperones in late G(1) to initiate the cell cycle. On one hand, these chaperones are rate-limiting for release of Cln3 and cell cycle entry and, on the other hand, they are required for key biosynthetic processes. We propose a model whereby the competition for specialized chaperones between growth and cycle machineries could gauge biosynthetic rates and set a critical size threshold at Start.

  9. Tumor cell "dead or alive": caspase and survivin regulate cell death, cell cycle and cell survival.

    PubMed

    Suzuki, A; Shiraki, K

    2001-04-01

    Cell death and cell cycle progression are two sides of the same coin, and these two different phenomenons are regulated moderately to maintain the cellular homeostasis. Tumor is one of the disease states produced as a result of the disintegrated regulation and is characterized as cells showing an irreversible progression of cell cycle and a resistance to cell death signaling. Several investigations have been performed for the understanding of cell death or cell cycle, and cell death research has remarkably progressed in these 10 years. Caspase is a nomenclature referring to ICE/CED-3 cysteine proteinase family and plays a central role during cell death. Recently, several investigations raised some possible hypotheses that caspase is also involved in cell cycle regulation. In this issue, therefore, we review the molecular basis of cell death and cell cycle regulated by caspase in tumor, especially hepatocellular carcinoma cells.

  10. An efficient magnetically modified microbial cell biocomposite for carbazole biodegradation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Li, Yufei; Du, Xiaoyu; Wu, Chao; Liu, Xueying; Wang, Xia; Xu, Ping

    2013-12-01

    Magnetic modification of microbial cells enables to prepare smart biocomposites in bioremediation. In this study, we constructed an efficient biocomposite by assembling Fe3O4 nanoparticles onto the surface of Sphingomonas sp. XLDN2-5 cells. The average particle size of Fe3O4 nanoparticles was about 20 nm with 45.5 emu g-1 saturation magnetization. The morphology of Sphingomonas sp. XLDN2-5 cells before and after Fe3O4 nanoparticle loading was verified by scanning electron microscopy and transmission electronic microscopy. Compared with free cells, the microbial cell/Fe3O4 biocomposite had the same biodegradation activity but exhibited remarkable reusability. The degradation activity of the microbial cell/Fe3O4 biocomposite increased gradually during recycling processes. Additionally, the microbial cell/Fe3O4 biocomposite could be easily separated and recycled by an external magnetic field due to the super-paramagnetic properties of Fe3O4 nanoparticle coating. These results indicated that magnetically modified microbial cells provide a promising technique for improving biocatalysts used in the biodegradation of hazardous compounds.

  11. An efficient magnetically modified microbial cell biocomposite for carbazole biodegradation

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Magnetic modification of microbial cells enables to prepare smart biocomposites in bioremediation. In this study, we constructed an efficient biocomposite by assembling Fe3O4 nanoparticles onto the surface of Sphingomonas sp. XLDN2-5 cells. The average particle size of Fe3O4 nanoparticles was about 20 nm with 45.5 emu g-1 saturation magnetization. The morphology of Sphingomonas sp. XLDN2-5 cells before and after Fe3O4 nanoparticle loading was verified by scanning electron microscopy and transmission electronic microscopy. Compared with free cells, the microbial cell/Fe3O4 biocomposite had the same biodegradation activity but exhibited remarkable reusability. The degradation activity of the microbial cell/Fe3O4 biocomposite increased gradually during recycling processes. Additionally, the microbial cell/Fe3O4 biocomposite could be easily separated and recycled by an external magnetic field due to the super-paramagnetic properties of Fe3O4 nanoparticle coating. These results indicated that magnetically modified microbial cells provide a promising technique for improving biocatalysts used in the biodegradation of hazardous compounds. PMID:24330511

  12. Evidence of Microbial Regulation of Biogeochemical Cycles from a Study on Methane Flux and Land Use Change

    PubMed Central

    Nazaries, Loïc; Pan, Yao; Bodrossy, Levente; Baggs, Elizabeth M.; Millard, Peter; Murrell, J. Colin

    2013-01-01

    Microbes play an essential role in ecosystem functions, including carrying out biogeochemical cycles, but are currently considered a black box in predictive models and all global biodiversity debates. This is due to (i) perceived temporal and spatial variations in microbial communities and (ii) lack of ecological theory explaining how microbes regulate ecosystem functions. Providing evidence of the microbial regulation of biogeochemical cycles is key for predicting ecosystem functions, including greenhouse gas fluxes, under current and future climate scenarios. Using functional measures, stable-isotope probing, and molecular methods, we show that microbial (community diversity and function) response to land use change is stable over time. We investigated the change in net methane flux and associated microbial communities due to afforestation of bog, grassland, and moorland. Afforestation resulted in the stable and consistent enhancement in sink of atmospheric methane at all sites. This change in function was linked to a niche-specific separation of microbial communities (methanotrophs). The results suggest that ecological theories developed for macroecology may explain the microbial regulation of the methane cycle. Our findings provide support for the explicit consideration of microbial data in ecosystem/climate models to improve predictions of biogeochemical cycles. PMID:23624469

  13. Cell cycle regulation of glucocorticoid receptor function.

    PubMed Central

    Hsu, S C; Qi, M; DeFranco, D B

    1992-01-01

    Glucocorticoid receptor (GR) nuclear translocation, transactivation and phosphorylation were examined during the cell cycle in mouse L cell fibroblasts. Glucocorticoid-dependent transactivation of the mouse mammary tumor virus promoter was observed in G0 and S phase synchronized L cells, but not in G2 synchronized cells. G2 effects were selective on the glucocorticoid hormone signal transduction pathway, since glucocorticoid but not heavy metal induction of the endogenous Metallothionein-1 gene was also impaired in G2 synchronized cells. GRs that translocate to the nucleus of G2 synchronized cells in response to dexamethasone treatment were not efficiently retained there and redistributed to the cytoplasmic compartment. In contrast, GRs bound by the glucocorticoid antagonist RU486 were efficiently retained within nuclei of G2 synchronized cells. Inefficient nuclear retention was observed for both dexamethasone- and RU486-bound GRs in L cells that actively progress through G2 following release from an S phase arrest. Finally, site-specific alterations in GR phosphorylation were observed in G2 synchronized cells suggesting that cell cycle regulation of specific protein kinases and phosphatases could influence nuclear retention, recycling and transactivation activity of the GR. Images PMID:1505524

  14. Control points within the cell cycle

    SciTech Connect

    Van't Hof, J.

    1984-01-01

    Evidence of the temporal order of chromosomal DNA replication argues favorably for the view that the cell cycle is controlled by genes acting in sequence whose time of expression is determined by mitosis and the amount of nuclear DNA (2C vs 4C) in the cell. Gl and G2 appear to be carbohydrate dependent in that cells starved of either carbohydrate of phosphate fail to make these transitions. Cells deprived of nitrate, however, fail only at Gl to S transition indicating that the controls that operate in G1 differ from those that operate in G2. 46 references, 5 figures.

  15. Electricity generation in a microbial fuel cell with a microbially catalyzed cathode.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Jin-Na; Zhao, Qing-Liang; Aelterman, Peter; You, Shi-Jie; Jiang, Jun-Qiu

    2008-10-01

    A microbial fuel cell using aerobic microorganisms as the cathodic catalysts is described. By using anaerobic sludge in the anode and aerobic sludge in the cathode as inocula, the microbial fuel cell could be started up after a short lag time of 9 days, generating a stable voltage of 0.324 V (R (ex) = 500 Omega). At an aeration rate of 300 ml min(-1) in the cathode, a maximum volumetric power density of up to 24.7 W m(-3) (117.2 A m(-3)) was reached. This research demonstrates an economic system for recovering electrical energy from organic compounds.

  16. The Resilience of Microbial Community under Drying and Rewetting Cycles of Three Forest Soils

    PubMed Central

    Zhou, Xue; Fornara, Dario; Ikenaga, Makoto; Akagi, Isao; Zhang, Ruifu; Jia, Zhongjun

    2016-01-01

    Forest soil ecosystems are associated with large pools and fluxes of carbon (C) and nitrogen (N), which could be strongly affected by variation in rainfall events under current climate change. Understanding how dry and wet cycle events might influence the metabolic state of indigenous soil microbes is crucial for predicting forest soil responses to environmental change. We used 454 pyrosequencing and quantitative PCR to address how present (DNA-based) and potentially active (RNA-based) soil bacterial communities might response to the changes in water availability across three different forest types located in two continents (Africa and Asia) under controlled drying and rewetting cycles. Sequencing of rRNA gene and transcript indicated that Proteobacteria, Actinobacteria, and Acidobacteria were the most responsive phyla to changes in water availability. We defined the ratio of rRNA transcript to rRNA gene abundance as a key indicator of potential microbial activity and we found that this ratio was increased following soil dry-down process whereas it decreased after soil rewetting. Following rewetting Crenarchaeota-like 16S rRNA gene transcript increased in some forest soils and this was linked to increases in soil nitrate levels suggesting greater nitrification rates under higher soil water availability. Changes in the relative abundance of (1) different microbial phyla and classes, and (2) 16S and amoA genes were found to be site- and taxa-specific and might have been driven by different life-strategies. Overall, we found that, after rewetting, the structure of the present and potentially active bacterial community structure as well as the abundance of bacterial (16S), archaeal (16S) and ammonia oxidizers (amoA), all returned to pre-dry-down levels. This suggests that microbial taxa have the ability to recover from desiccation, a critical response, which will contribute to maintaining microbial biodiversity in harsh ecosystems under environmental perturbations

  17. qPCR analysis of carbon, nitrogen, and arsenic cycling in Zetaproteobacteria-dominated microbial mats

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jesser, K. J.; Fullerton, H.; Hilton, T. S.; Kimber, J.; Hager, K.; Moyer, C. L.

    2013-12-01

    The recently discovered Zetaproteobacteria represent a novel class of Proteobacteria which oxidize Fe(II) to Fe(III) to fix CO2 at hydrothermal vents. Zetaproteobacteria were first discovered at Lo'ihi Seamount, located 35 km southeast of the big island of Hawai'i and characterized by low-temperature diffuse hydrothermal vents. The hydrothermal vents at Lo'ihi are surrounded by luxuriant iron-rich microbial mats dominated by Zetaproteobacteria. We aim to use real-time quantitative PCR (qPCR) to quantify functional genes associated with the microbial carbon, nitrogen, and arsenic cycles in complex Zetaproteobacteria- dominated iron mat communities. Unique qPCR primer sets have been developed based on Illumina next-generation sequence data from an iron mat collected in 2009 at Lo'ihi. These primers target the sequences for arsenate reductase and nitrite reductase, genes associated with arsenic detoxification and denitrification, respectively. Additionally, we are utilizing published primer sets to quantify genes associated with autotrophic carbon and nitrogen fixation pathways. Genomic DNA was isolated from microbial mats at multiple vent sites with varying temperatures and fluid flow during our 2013 expedition to Lo'ihi. The qPCR data for these samples can be used to draw correlations among fine scale mat structures and nutrient cycling processes across diverse mat morphologies, as previous research has identified unique microbial communities and metabolic strategies associated with distinct mat morphologies. This work will enable us to better identify samples for further molecular analysis, and may provide insights into the evolutionary history and metabolic functionality of various mat morphotypes. We hypothesize that Zetaproteobacteria act as ecosystem engineers, driving the structure and function of iron mat ecosystems.

  18. Productivity Estimation of Hypersaline Microbial Mat Communities - Diurnal Cycles of Dissolved Oxygen

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Less, G.; Cohen, Y.; Luz, B.; Lazar, B.

    2002-05-01

    Hypersaline microbial mat communities (MMC) are the modern equivalents of the Archean stromatolities, the first photosynthetic organisms on Earth. An estimate of their oxygen production rate is important to the understanding of oxygen evolution on Earth ca. 2 b.y.b.p. Here we use the diurnal cycle of dissolved oxygen, O2/Ar ratio and the isotopic composition of dissolved oxygen to calculate net and gross primary productivity of MMC growing in a large scale (80 m2) experimental pan. The pan is inoculated with MMC taken from the Solar Lake, Sinai, Egypt and filled with 90\\permil evaporated Red Sea water brine up to a depth of ca. 0.25 m. It is equipped with computerized flow through system that is programmed to pump pan water at selected time intervals into a sampling cell fitted with dissolved oxygen, pH, conductivity and temperature sensors connected to a datalogger. Manual brine samples were taken for calibrating the sensors, mass spectrometric analyses and for measurements of additional relevant parameters. Dissolved oxygen concentrations fluctuate during the diurnal cycle being highly supersaturated except for the end of the night. The O2 curve varies seasonally and has a typical "shark fin" shape due to the MMC metabolic response to the shape of the diurnal light curve. The dissolved oxygen data were fitted to a smooth curve that its time derivative (dO2 /dt) is defined as: Z dO2 /dt=GP-R-k(O2(meas)- O2(sat)) where z is the depth (m); GP and R are the MMC gross production and respiration (mol m-2 d-1), respectively; k is the gas exchange coefficient (m d-1); O2(meas) and O2(sat) (mol L-1) are the measured and equilibrium dissolved oxygen concentrations, respectively. The high resolution sampling of the automated system produces O2 curves that enable the calculation of smooth and reliable time derivatives. The calculations yield net production values that vary between 1,000 10-6 to -100 10-6 mol O2 m-2 h-1 and day respiration rates between 60 10-6 to 30 10

  19. Mitochondrial dynamics and the cell cycle

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Nuclear-mitochondrial (NM) communication impacts many aspects of plant development including vigor, sterility and viability. Dynamic changes in mitochondrial number, shape, size, and cellular location takes place during the cell cycle possibly impacting the process itself and leading to distribution...

  20. Size and Carbon Content of Sub-seafloor Microbial Cells at Landsort Deep, Baltic Sea

    PubMed Central

    Braun, Stefan; Morono, Yuki; Littmann, Sten; Kuypers, Marcel; Aslan, Hüsnü; Dong, Mingdong; Jørgensen, Bo B.; Lomstein, Bente Aa.

    2016-01-01

    The discovery of a microbial ecosystem in ocean sediments has evoked interest in life under extreme energy limitation and its role in global element cycling. However, fundamental parameters such as the size and the amount of biomass of sub-seafloor microbial cells are poorly constrained. Here we determined the volume and the carbon content of microbial cells from a marine sediment drill core retrieved by the Integrated Ocean Drilling Program (IODP), Expedition 347, at Landsort Deep, Baltic Sea. To determine their shape and volume, cells were separated from the sediment matrix by multi-layer density centrifugation and visualized via epifluorescence microscopy (FM) and scanning electron microscopy (SEM). Total cell-carbon was calculated from amino acid-carbon, which was analyzed by high-performance liquid chromatography (HPLC) after cells had been purified by fluorescence-activated cell sorting (FACS). The majority of microbial cells in the sediment have coccoid or slightly elongated morphology. From the sediment surface to the deepest investigated sample (~60 m below the seafloor), the cell volume of both coccoid and elongated cells decreased by an order of magnitude from ~0.05 to 0.005 μm3. The cell-specific carbon content was 19–31 fg C cell−1, which is at the lower end of previous estimates that were used for global estimates of microbial biomass. The cell-specific carbon density increased with sediment depth from about 200 to 1000 fg C μm−3, suggesting that cells decrease their water content and grow small cell sizes as adaptation to the long-term subsistence at very low energy availability in the deep biosphere. We present for the first time depth-related data on the cell volume and carbon content of sedimentary microbial cells buried down to 60 m below the seafloor. Our data enable estimates of volume- and biomass-specific cellular rates of energy metabolism in the deep biosphere and will improve global estimates of microbial biomass. PMID:27630628

  1. B cell-helping functions of gut microbial metabolites.

    PubMed

    Kim, Chang H

    2016-09-23

    Commensal microflora profoundly affects the host immune system. It has long been observed that commensal bacteria enhance antibody production in the host by producing antigens for B cell receptors (BCR) and ligands for Toll-like receptors (TLR). We recently reported that the microbial metabolites short-chain fatty acids (SCFAs) regulate the metabolism and gene expression in B cells to promote antibody production (Kim et al. Gut Microbial Metabolites Fuel Host Antibody Responses. Cell Host & Microbe. 2016; 20(2):202-14). The B-cell helping function of SCFAs and its implication in the host immune system are discussed in this article.

  2. B cell-helping functions of gut microbial metabolites

    PubMed Central

    Kim, Chang H.

    2016-01-01

    Commensal microflora profoundly affects the host immune system. It has long been observed that commensal bacteria enhance antibody production in the host by producing antigens for B cell receptors (BCR) and ligands for Toll-like receptors (TLR). We recently reported that the microbial metabolites short-chain fatty acids (SCFAs) regulate the metabolism and gene expression in B cells to promote antibody production (Kim et al. Gut Microbial Metabolites Fuel Host Antibody Responses. Cell Host & Microbe. 2016; 20(2):202-14). The B-cell helping function of SCFAs and its implication in the host immune system are discussed in this article. PMID:28357321

  3. Enrichment of Microbial Electrolysis Cell Biocathodes from Sediment Microbial Fuel Cell Bioanodes

    PubMed Central

    Pisciotta, John M.; Zaybak, Zehra; Call, Douglas F.; Nam, Joo-Youn

    2012-01-01

    Electron-accepting (electrotrophic) biocathodes were produced by first enriching graphite fiber brush electrodes as the anodes in sediment-type microbial fuel cells (sMFCs) using two different marine sediments and then electrically inverting the anodes to function as cathodes in two-chamber bioelectrochemical systems (BESs). Electron consumption occurred at set potentials of −439 mV and −539 mV (versus the potential of a standard hydrogen electrode) but not at −339 mV in minimal media lacking organic sources of energy. Results at these different potentials were consistent with separate linear sweep voltammetry (LSV) scans that indicated enhanced activity (current consumption) below only ca. −400 mV. MFC bioanodes not originally acclimated at a set potential produced electron-accepting (electrotrophic) biocathodes, but bioanodes operated at a set potential (+11 mV) did not. CO2 was removed from cathode headspace, indicating that the electrotrophic biocathodes were autotrophic. Hydrogen gas generation, followed by loss of hydrogen gas and methane production in one sample, suggested hydrogenotrophic methanogenesis. There was abundant microbial growth in the biocathode chamber, as evidenced by an increase in turbidity and the presence of microorganisms on the cathode surface. Clone library analysis of 16S rRNA genes indicated prominent sequences most similar to those of Eubacterium limosum (Butyribacterium methylotrophicum), Desulfovibrio sp. A2, Rhodococcus opacus, and Gemmata obscuriglobus. Transfer of the suspension to sterile cathodes made of graphite plates, carbon rods, or carbon brushes in new BESs resulted in enhanced current after 4 days, demonstrating growth by these microbial communities on a variety of cathode substrates. This report provides a simple and effective method for enriching autotrophic electrotrophs by the use of sMFCs without the need for set potentials, followed by the use of potentials more negative than −400 mV. PMID:22610438

  4. Enrichment of Microbial Electrolysis Cell Biocathodes from Sediment Microbial Fuel Cell Bioanodes

    SciTech Connect

    Pisciotta, JM; Zaybak, Z; Call, DF; Nam, JY; Logan, BE

    2012-07-18

    Electron-accepting (electrotrophic) biocathodes were produced by first enriching graphite fiber brush electrodes as the anodes in sediment-type microbial fuel cells (sMFCs) using two different marine sediments and then electrically inverting the anodes to function as cathodes in two-chamber bioelectrochemical systems (BESs). Electron consumption occurred at set potentials of -439 mV and -539 mV (versus the potential of a standard hydrogen electrode) but not at -339 mV in minimal media lacking organic sources of energy. Results at these different potentials were consistent with separate linear sweep voltammetry (LSV) scans that indicated enhanced activity (current consumption) below only ca. -400 mV. MFC bioanodes not originally acclimated at a set potential produced electron-accepting (electrotrophic) biocathodes, but bioanodes operated at a set potential (+11 mV) did not. CO, was removed from cathode headspace, indicating that the electrotrophic biocathodes were autotrophic. Hydrogen gas generation, followed by loss of hydrogen gas and methane production in one sample, suggested hydrogenotrophic methanogenesis. There was abundant microbial growth in the biocathode chamber, as evidenced by an increase in turbidity and the presence of microorganisms on the cathode surface. Clone library analysis of 16S rRNA genes indicated prominent sequences most similar to those of Eubacterium limosum (Butyribacterium methylotrophicum), Desulfovibrio sp. A2, Rhodococcus opacus, and Gemmata obscuriglobus. Transfer of the suspension to sterile cathodes made of graphite plates, carbon rods, or carbon brushes in new BESs resulted in enhanced current after 4 days, demonstrating growth by these microbial communities on a variety of cathode substrates. This report provides a simple and effective method for enriching autotrophic electrotrophs by the use of sMFCs without the need for set potentials, followed by the use of potentials more negative than -400 mV.

  5. Enrichment of microbial electrolysis cell biocathodes from sediment microbial fuel cell bioanodes.

    PubMed

    Pisciotta, John M; Zaybak, Zehra; Call, Douglas F; Nam, Joo-Youn; Logan, Bruce E

    2012-08-01

    Electron-accepting (electrotrophic) biocathodes were produced by first enriching graphite fiber brush electrodes as the anodes in sediment-type microbial fuel cells (sMFCs) using two different marine sediments and then electrically inverting the anodes to function as cathodes in two-chamber bioelectrochemical systems (BESs). Electron consumption occurred at set potentials of -439 mV and -539 mV (versus the potential of a standard hydrogen electrode) but not at -339 mV in minimal media lacking organic sources of energy. Results at these different potentials were consistent with separate linear sweep voltammetry (LSV) scans that indicated enhanced activity (current consumption) below only ca. -400 mV. MFC bioanodes not originally acclimated at a set potential produced electron-accepting (electrotrophic) biocathodes, but bioanodes operated at a set potential (+11 mV) did not. CO(2) was removed from cathode headspace, indicating that the electrotrophic biocathodes were autotrophic. Hydrogen gas generation, followed by loss of hydrogen gas and methane production in one sample, suggested hydrogenotrophic methanogenesis. There was abundant microbial growth in the biocathode chamber, as evidenced by an increase in turbidity and the presence of microorganisms on the cathode surface. Clone library analysis of 16S rRNA genes indicated prominent sequences most similar to those of Eubacterium limosum (Butyribacterium methylotrophicum), Desulfovibrio sp. A2, Rhodococcus opacus, and Gemmata obscuriglobus. Transfer of the suspension to sterile cathodes made of graphite plates, carbon rods, or carbon brushes in new BESs resulted in enhanced current after 4 days, demonstrating growth by these microbial communities on a variety of cathode substrates. This report provides a simple and effective method for enriching autotrophic electrotrophs by the use of sMFCs without the need for set potentials, followed by the use of potentials more negative than -400 mV.

  6. Growing Rocks: Implications of Lithification for Microbial Communities and Nutrient Cycling

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Corman, J. R.; Poret-Peterson, A. T.; Elser, J. J.

    2014-12-01

    Lithifying microbial communities ("microbialites") have left their signature on Earth's rock record for over 3.4 billion years and are regarded as important players in paleo-biogeochemical cycles. In this project, we study extant microbialites to understand the interactions between lithification and resource availability. All microbes need nutrients and energy for growth; indeed, nutrients are often a factor limiting microbial growth. We hypothesize that calcium carbonate deposition can sequester bioavailable phosphorus (P) and expect the growth of microbialites to be P-limited. To test our hypothesis, we first compared nutrient limitation in lithifying and non-lithifying microbial communities in Río Mesquites, Cuatro Ciénegas. Then, we experimentally manipulated calcification rates in the Río Mesquites microbialites. Our results suggest that lithifying microbialites are indeed P-limited, while non-lithifying, benthic microbial communities tend towards co-limitation by nitrogen (N) and P. Indeed, in microbialites, photosynthesis and aerobic respiration responded positively to P additions (P<0.05). Organic carbon (OC) additions caused shifts in bacterial community composition based on analysis of 16S rRNA genes. Unexpectedly, calcification rates increased with OC additions (P<0.05), but not with P additions, suggesting that sulfate reduction may be an important pathway for calcification. Experimental reductions in calcification rates caused changes to microbial biomass OC and P concentrations (P<0.01 and P<0.001, respectively), although shifts depended on whether calcification was decreased abiotically or biotically. These results show that resource availability does influence microbialite formation and that lithification may promote phosphorus limitation; however, further investigation is required to understand the mechanism by which the later occurs.

  7. Contribution of Microbial Activities To Carbon Cycle In A Deep Sea Ionian Area

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zaccone, R.; Caruso, G.; Azzaro, F.; Azzaro, M.; Decembrini, F.; La Ferla, R.; Leonardi, M.

    Main biological process which sustain life in deep environments is the microbial uti- lization of particulated matter. Despite the well known importance of bacterial role in biogeochemical cycles, the rates of microbial processes on organic matter in the Mediterranean Sea, and in particular in the Ionian Sea, are still poorly understood. During winter 1999, water samples were collected at different depths (0-3300m) from six stations along a costal-offshore transect located at 60 miles off Cape Passero (SE Sicily) in the Ionian Sea. Measurements of chlorophyll a, bacterial abundance, ATP and POC enabled the estimation of autotrophic and bacterial contribution to the pool of particulate organic matter. Estimates of microbial leucine-aminopeptidase (LAP) and respiration rates (ETSa) were compared with different water masses identified ac- cording to temperature, salinity and nutrients. Results showed that bacterial biomass contributed to particulated carbon in percentage ranging from 4.57% in surface waters (ISW) to 1.29% in EMDW. Microbial hydrolysis of POC showed higher percentage also in ISW reaching 1.81% and potentially liberating 0.73µg C/l/h (mean values), bioavailable for bacterial growth. The lowest rates of LAP mean values (0.06µg C/l/h) were observed in EMDW with 0.16% of POC potentially hydrolysed. These hydroly- sis rates confirm that during sinking a greater amount of organic matter can not be uti- lized by bacteria and may become refractory. Respiratory rates ranged from 0.118µg C/l/h in MAW to 0.003 µg C/l/h in CDW, with a decreasing trend with depth, indicat- ing low respiration rates with respect to precedent data recorded in deep Mediterranean zones. This research tried of evaluating the carbon flux through the microbial commu- nity and contributed to study some steps of degradative process of organic matter and mineralization to CO2 in relation to the different hydrological characteristics in the Mediterranean changing environment.

  8. Sulfur-Oxidizing Bacteria Mediate Microbial Community Succession and Element Cycling in Launched Marine Sediment.

    PubMed

    Ihara, Hideyuki; Hori, Tomoyuki; Aoyagi, Tomo; Takasaki, Mitsuru; Katayama, Yoko

    2017-01-01

    A large amount of marine sediment was launched on land by the Great East Japan earthquake. Here, we employed both on-site and laboratory studies on the launched marine sediment to investigate the succession of microbial communities and its effects on geochemical properties of the sediment. Twenty-two-month on-site survey showed that microbial communities at the uppermost layer (0-2 mm depth) of the sediment changed significantly with time, whereas those at the deeper layer (20-40 mm depth) remained nearly unchanged and kept anaerobic microbial communities. Nine months after the incidence, various sulfur-oxidizing bacteria (SOB) prevailed in the uppermost layer, in which afterwards diverse chemoorganotrophic bacteria predominated. Geochemical analyses indicated that the concentration of metals other than Fe was lower in the uppermost layer than that in the deeper layer. Laboratory study was carried out by incubating the sediment for 57 days, and clearly indicated the dynamic transition of microbial communities in the uppermost layer exposed to atmosphere. SOB affiliated in the class Epsilonproteobacteria rapidly proliferated and dominated at the uppermost layer during the first 3 days, after that Fe(II)-oxidizing bacteria and chemoorganotrophic bacteria were sequentially dominant. Furthermore, the concentration of sulfate ion increased and the pH decreased. Consequently, SOB may have influenced the mobilization of heavy metals in the sediment by metal-bound sulfide oxidation and/or sediment acidification. These results demonstrate that SOB initiated the dynamic shift from the anaerobic to aerobic microbial communities, thereby playing a critical role in element cycling in the marine sediment.

  9. Sulfur-Oxidizing Bacteria Mediate Microbial Community Succession and Element Cycling in Launched Marine Sediment

    PubMed Central

    Ihara, Hideyuki; Hori, Tomoyuki; Aoyagi, Tomo; Takasaki, Mitsuru; Katayama, Yoko

    2017-01-01

    A large amount of marine sediment was launched on land by the Great East Japan earthquake. Here, we employed both on-site and laboratory studies on the launched marine sediment to investigate the succession of microbial communities and its effects on geochemical properties of the sediment. Twenty-two-month on-site survey showed that microbial communities at the uppermost layer (0–2 mm depth) of the sediment changed significantly with time, whereas those at the deeper layer (20–40 mm depth) remained nearly unchanged and kept anaerobic microbial communities. Nine months after the incidence, various sulfur-oxidizing bacteria (SOB) prevailed in the uppermost layer, in which afterwards diverse chemoorganotrophic bacteria predominated. Geochemical analyses indicated that the concentration of metals other than Fe was lower in the uppermost layer than that in the deeper layer. Laboratory study was carried out by incubating the sediment for 57 days, and clearly indicated the dynamic transition of microbial communities in the uppermost layer exposed to atmosphere. SOB affiliated in the class Epsilonproteobacteria rapidly proliferated and dominated at the uppermost layer during the first 3 days, after that Fe(II)-oxidizing bacteria and chemoorganotrophic bacteria were sequentially dominant. Furthermore, the concentration of sulfate ion increased and the pH decreased. Consequently, SOB may have influenced the mobilization of heavy metals in the sediment by metal-bound sulfide oxidation and/or sediment acidification. These results demonstrate that SOB initiated the dynamic shift from the anaerobic to aerobic microbial communities, thereby playing a critical role in element cycling in the marine sediment. PMID:28217124

  10. Carbon Cycling in Restored Wisconsin Grasslands: Examining Linkages Between Plant Diversity, Microbial Communities and Ecosystem Processes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cahill, K. N.; Kucharik, C. J.; Balser, T. C.; Foley, J. A.

    2002-12-01

    It is important to characterize the variability of carbon (C) fluxes and stocks and the relationship between biotic and abiotic factors and C sequestration, a proposed strategy to help mitigate climate change. An observation site to study C cycling was established on land enrolled in the USDA Conservation Reserve Program in southwestern Wisconsin in spring 2002 on silt-loam soil. The site was converted from intensive row-crop agriculture in 1987 to three adjacent land cover types: an assortment of native C4 grasses, two C3 grasses and a nitrogen-fixer, and a disk planted, no-tillage food plot rotation of maize and soybeans. Key goals of the study were to characterize the effect of plant species composition and microbial community characteristics on carbon cycling in an attempt to link above- and below-ground processes. Measurements of soil surface CO2 efflux were made on a near-weekly basis during the growing season using a LICOR-6400, concurrently with soil surface moisture adjacent to the CO2 collars. Thermocouples were installed to record hourly average air temperature and soil temperature at 5 depths, from 2 to 70 cm, and water content sensors made hourly average measurements at 15 and 30 cm. Leaf area index measurements were made weekly, aboveground vegetation biomass was collected monthly, and belowground root biomass was collected bimonthly. Monthly microbial measurements included an assessment of community physiological profiles using BiOLOG, and assays of community composition (lipid analysis) and activity. Preliminary results suggest that land cover types significantly altered carbon cycling and microbial community structure and function, leading to different rates of C sequestration.

  11. Electricity production from municipal solid waste using microbial fuel cells.

    PubMed

    Chiu, H Y; Pai, T Y; Liu, M H; Chang, C A; Lo, F C; Chang, T C; Lo, H M; Chiang, C F; Chao, K P; Lo, W Y; Lo, S W; Chu, Y L

    2016-07-01

    The organic content of municipal solid waste has long been an attractive source of renewable energy, mainly as a solid fuel in waste-to-energy plants. This study focuses on the potential to use microbial fuel cells to convert municipal solid waste organics into energy using various operational conditions. The results showed that two-chamber microbial fuel cells with carbon felt and carbon felt allocation had a higher maximal power density (20.12 and 30.47 mW m(-2) for 1.5 and 4 L, respectively) than those of other electrode plate allocations. Most two-chamber microbial fuel cells (1.5 and 4 L) had a higher maximal power density than single-chamber ones with corresponding electrode plate allocations. Municipal solid waste with alkali hydrolysis pre-treatment and K3Fe(CN)6 as an electron acceptor improved the maximal power density to 1817.88 mW m(-2) (~0.49% coulomb efficiency, from 0.05-0.49%). The maximal power density from experiments using individual 1.5 and 4 L two-chamber microbial fuel cells, and serial and parallel connections of 1.5 and 4 L two-chamber microbial fuel cells, was found to be in the order of individual 4 L (30.47 mW m(-2)) > serial connection of 1.5 and 4 L (27.75) > individual 1.5 L (20.12) > parallel connection of 1.5 and 4 L (17.04) two-chamber microbial fuel cells . The power density using municipal solid waste microbial fuel cells was compared with information in the literature and discussed.

  12. Modeling of Sustainable Base Production by Microbial Electrolysis Cell.

    PubMed

    Blatter, Maxime; Sugnaux, Marc; Comninellis, Christos; Nealson, Kenneth; Fischer, Fabian

    2016-07-07

    A predictive model for the microbial/electrochemical base formation from wastewater was established and compared to experimental conditions within a microbial electrolysis cell. A Na2 SO4 /K2 SO4 anolyte showed that model prediction matched experimental results. Using Shewanella oneidensis MR-1, a strong base (pH≈13) was generated using applied voltages between 0.3 and 1.1 V. Due to the use of bicarbonate, the pH value in the anolyte remained unchanged, which is required to maintain microbial activity.

  13. Microbial communities involved in electricity generation from sulfide oxidation in a microbial fuel cell.

    PubMed

    Sun, Min; Tong, Zhong-Hua; Sheng, Guo-Ping; Chen, Yong-Zhen; Zhang, Feng; Mu, Zhe-Xuan; Wang, Hua-Lin; Zeng, Raymond J; Liu, Xian-Wei; Yu, Han-Qing; Wei, Li; Ma, Fang

    2010-10-15

    Simultaneous electricity generation and sulfide removal can be achieved in a microbial fuel cell (MFC). In electricity harvesting from sulfide oxidation in such an MFC, various microbial communities are involved. It is essential to elucidate the microbial communities and their roles in the sulfide conversion and electricity generation. In this work, an MFC was constructed to enrich a microbial consortium, which could harvest electricity from sulfide oxidation. Electrochemical analysis demonstrated that microbial catalysis was involved in electricity output in the sulfide-fed MFC. The anode-attached and planktonic communities could perform catalysis independently, and synergistic interactions occurred when the two communities worked together. A 16S rRNA clone library analysis was employed to characterize the microbial communities in the MFC. The anode-attached and planktonic communities shared similar richness and diversity, while the LIBSHUFF analysis revealed that the two community structures were significantly different. The exoelectrogenic, sulfur-oxidizing and sulfate-reducing bacteria were found in the MFC anodic chamber. The discovery of these bacteria was consistent with the community characteristics for electricity generation from sulfide oxidation. The exoelectrogenic bacteria were found both on the anode and in the solution. The sulfur-oxidizing bacteria were present in greater abundance on the anode than in the solution, while the sulfate-reducing bacteria preferably lived in the solution.

  14. Solar energy powered microbial fuel cell with a reversible bioelectrode.

    PubMed

    Strik, David P B T B; Hamelers, Hubertus V M; Buisman, Cees J N

    2010-01-01

    The solar energy powered microbial fuel cell is an emerging technology for electricity generation via electrochemically active microorganisms fueled by solar energy via in situ photosynthesized metabolites from algae, cyanobacteria, or living higher plants. A general problem with microbial fuel cells is the pH membrane gradient which reduces cell voltage and power output. This problem is caused by acid production at the anode, alkaline production at the cathode, and the nonspecific proton exchange through the membrane. Here we report a solution for a new kind of solar energy powered microbial fuel cell via development of a reversible bioelectrode responsible for both biocatalyzed anodic and cathodic electron transfer. Anodic produced protons were used for the cathodic reduction reaction which held the formation of a pH membrane gradient. The microbial fuel cell continuously generated electricity and repeatedly reversed polarity dependent on aeration or solar energy exposure. Identified organisms within biocatalyzing biofilm of the reversible bioelectrode were algae, (cyano)bacteria and protozoa. These results encourage application of solar energy powered microbial fuel cells.

  15. Cell Cycle Progression of Human Cells Cultured in Rotating Bioreactor

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Parks, Kelsey

    2009-01-01

    Space flight has been shown to alter the astronauts immune systems. Because immune performance is complex and reflects the influence of multiple organ systems within the host, scientists sought to understand the potential impact of microgravity alone on the cellular mechanisms critical to immunity. Lymphocytes and their differentiated immature form, lymphoblasts, play an important and integral role in the body's defense system. T cells, one of the three major types of lymphocytes, play a central role in cell-mediated immunity. They can be distinguished from other lymphocyte types, such as B cells and natural killer cells by the presence of a special receptor on their cell surface called T cell receptors. Reported studies have shown that spaceflight can affect the expression of cell surface markers. Cell surface markers play an important role in the ability of cells to interact and to pass signals between different cells of the same phenotype and cells of different phenotypes. Recent evidence suggests that cell-cycle regulators are essential for T-cell function. To trigger an effective immune response, lymphocytes must proliferate. The objective of this project is to investigate the changes in growth of human cells cultured in rotating bioreactors and to measure the growth rate and the cell cycle distribution for different human cell types. Human lymphocytes and lymphoblasts will be cultured in a bioreactor to simulate aspects of microgravity. The bioreactor is a cylindrical culture vessel that incorporates the aspects of clinostatic rotation of a solid fluid body around a horizontal axis at a constant speed, and compensates gravity by rotation and places cells within the fluid body into a sustained free-fall. Cell cycle progression and cell proliferation of the lymphocytes will be measured for a number of days. In addition, RNA from the cells will be isolated for expression of genes related in cell cycle regulations.

  16. Challenges in microbial fuel cell development and operation.

    PubMed

    Kim, Byung Hong; Chang, In Seop; Gadd, Geoffrey M

    2007-09-01

    A microbial fuel cell (MFC) is a device that converts chemical energy into electricity through the catalytic activities of microorganisms. Although there is great potential of MFCs as an alternative energy source, novel wastewater treatment process, and biosensor for oxygen and pollutants, extensive optimization is required to exploit the maximum microbial potential. In this article, the main limiting factors of MFC operation are identified and suggestions are made to improve performance.

  17. FUEL CELL/MICRO-TURBINE COMBINED CYCLE

    SciTech Connect

    Larry J. Chaney; Mike R. Tharp; Tom W. Wolf; Tim A. Fuller; Joe J. Hartvigson

    1999-12-01

    A wide variety of conceptual design studies have been conducted that describe ultra-high efficiency fossil power plant cycles. The most promising of these ultra-high efficiency cycles incorporate high temperature fuel cells with a gas turbine. Combining fuel cells with a gas turbine increases overall cycle efficiency while reducing per kilowatt emissions. This study has demonstrated that the unique approach taken to combining a fuel cell and gas turbine has both technical and economic merit. The approach used in this study eliminates most of the gas turbine integration problems associated with hybrid fuel cell turbine systems. By using a micro-turbine, and a non-pressurized fuel cell the total system size (kW) and complexity has been reduced substantially from those presented in other studies, while maintaining over 70% efficiency. The reduced system size can be particularly attractive in the deregulated electrical generation/distribution environment where the market may not demand multi-megawatt central stations systems. The small size also opens up the niche markets to this high efficiency, low emission electrical generation option.

  18. Cell cycle nucleic acids, polypeptides and uses thereof

    DOEpatents

    Gordon-Kamm, William J.; Lowe, Keith S.; Larkins, Brian A.; Dilkes, Brian R.; Sun, Yuejin

    2007-08-14

    The invention provides isolated nucleic acids and their encoded proteins that are involved in cell cycle regulation. The invention further provides recombinant expression cassettes, host cells, transgenic plants, and antibody compositions. The present invention provides methods and compositions relating to altering cell cycle protein content, cell cycle progression, cell number and/or composition of plants.

  19. Modeling of SONOS Memory Cell Erase Cycle

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Phillips, Thomas A.; MacLeod, Todd C.; Ho, Fat H.

    2011-01-01

    Utilization of Silicon-Oxide-Nitride-Oxide-Silicon (SONOS) nonvolatile semiconductor memories as a flash memory has many advantages. These electrically erasable programmable read-only memories (EEPROMs) utilize low programming voltages, have a high erase/write cycle lifetime, are radiation hardened, and are compatible with high-density scaled CMOS for low power, portable electronics. In this paper, the SONOS memory cell erase cycle was investigated using a nonquasi-static (NQS) MOSFET model. Comparisons were made between the model predictions and experimental data.

  20. Solid oxide fuel cell combined cycles

    SciTech Connect

    Bevc, F.P.; Lundberg, W.L.; Bachovchin, D.M.

    1996-12-31

    The integration of the solid oxide fuel cell and combustion turbine technologies can result in combined-cycle power plants, fueled with natural gas, that have high efficiencies and clean gaseous emissions. Results of a study are presented in which conceptual designs were developed for 3 power plants based upon such an integration, and ranging in rating from 3 to 10 MW net ac. The plant cycles are described and characteristics of key components summarized. Also, plant design-point efficiency estimates are presented as well as values of other plant performance parameters.

  1. Westinghouse fuel cell combined cycle systems

    SciTech Connect

    Veyo, S.

    1996-12-31

    Efficiency (voltage) of the solid oxide fuel cell (SOFC) should increase with operating pressure, and a pressurized SOFC could function as the heat addition process in a Brayton cycle gas turbine (GT) engine. An overall cycle efficiency of 70% should be possible. In cogeneration, half of the waste heat from a PSOFC/GT should be able to be captured in process steam and hot water, leading to a fuel effectiveness of about 85%. In order to make the PSOFC/GT a commercial reality, satisfactory operation of the SOFC at elevated pressure must be verified, a pressurized SOFC generator module must be designed, built, and tested, and the combined cycle and parameters must be optimized. A prototype must also be demonstrated. This paper describes progress toward making the PSOFC/GT a reality.

  2. The Link between Microbial Diversity and Nitrogen Cycling in Marine Sediments Is Modulated by Macrofaunal Bioturbation

    PubMed Central

    Yazdani Foshtomi, Maryam; Braeckman, Ulrike; Derycke, Sofie; Sapp, Melanie; Van Gansbeke, Dirk; Sabbe, Koen; Willems, Anne; Vincx, Magda; Vanaverbeke, Jan

    2015-01-01

    Objectives The marine benthic nitrogen cycle is affected by both the presence and activity of macrofauna and the diversity of N-cycling microbes. However, integrated research simultaneously investigating macrofauna, microbes and N-cycling is lacking. We investigated spatio-temporal patterns in microbial community composition and diversity, macrofaunal abundance and their sediment reworking activity, and N-cycling in seven subtidal stations in the Southern North Sea. Spatio-Temporal Patterns of the Microbial Communities Our results indicated that bacteria (total and β-AOB) showed more spatio-temporal variation than archaea (total and AOA) as sedimentation of organic matter and the subsequent changes in the environment had a stronger impact on their community composition and diversity indices in our study area. However, spatio-temporal patterns of total bacterial and β-AOB communities were different and related to the availability of ammonium for the autotrophic β-AOB. Highest bacterial richness and diversity were observed in June at the timing of the phytoplankton bloom deposition, while richness of β-AOB as well as AOA peaked in September. Total archaeal community showed no temporal variation in diversity indices. Macrofauna, Microbes and the Benthic N-Cycle Distance based linear models revealed that, independent from the effect of grain size and the quality and quantity of sediment organic matter, nitrification and N-mineralization were affected by respectively the diversity of metabolically active β-AOB and AOA, and the total bacteria, near the sediment-water interface. Separate models demonstrated a significant and independent effect of macrofaunal activities on community composition and richness of total bacteria, and diversity indices of metabolically active AOA. Diversity of β-AOB was significantly affected by macrofaunal abundance. Our results support the link between microbial biodiversity and ecosystem functioning in marine sediments, and provided

  3. Modeling the effect of substrate stoichiometry on microbial carbon use efficiency and soil C cycling

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Abramoff, R. Z.; Tang, J.; Georgiou, K.; Brodie, E.; Torn, M. S.; Riley, W. J.

    2015-12-01

    Microorganisms degrade soil organic matter (SOM) and apportion newly acquired substrates into enzyme production, biomass growth, and respiration. The fraction of acquired substrate that is released into the atmosphere as heterotrophic respiration is determined by the microbial carbon use efficiency (CUE), commonly defined as the fraction of carbon uptake that is allocated to microbial growth and enzyme production. Despite recent demonstrations that changes in CUE can greatly affect predictions of global soil C stocks, most models do not incorporate process-level representation of CUE or how it varies with substrate stoichiometry. Here we introduce coupled C and N cycling into a prognostic CUE model that uses the dynamic energy budget theory to predict CUE at each time step. We solve this model over a range of substrate C:N to simulate the effects of N addition on CUE, and test the model against previously published measurements of CUE after nutrient enrichment with a range of substrates. We find that CUE declines with microbial N limitation due to C overflow and acquisition strategies that favor N immobilization. We also demonstrate that including an intracellular reserve pool in the model alleviates decreases in CUE by allowing excess C to be stored during periods of N limitation. Consistent with previous studies, we find that predictions of soil C stocks are highly sensitive to CUE. Furthermore, we show that interactive effects between substrate inputs and temperature result in a wide range of possible CUE values under global change scenarios.

  4. Impact of volatile fatty acids on microbial electrolysis cell performance.

    PubMed

    Yang, Nan; Hafez, Hisham; Nakhla, George

    2015-10-01

    This study investigated the performance of microbial electrolysis cells (MECs) fed with three common fermentation products: acetate, butyrate, and propionate. Each substrate was fed to the reactor for three consecutive-batch cycles. The results showed high current densities for acetate, but low current densities for butyrate and propionate (maximum values were 6.0 ± 0.28, 2.5 ± 0.06, 1.6 ± 0.14 A/m(2), respectively). Acetate also showed a higher coulombic efficiency of 87 ± 5.7% compared to 72 ± 2.0 and 51 ± 6.4% for butyrate and propionate, respectively. This paper also revealed that acetate could be easily oxidized by anode respiring bacteria in MEC, while butyrate and propionate could not be oxidized to the same degree. The utilization rate of the substrates in MEC followed the order: acetate > butyrate > propionate. The ratio of suspended biomass to attached biomass was approximately 1:4 for all the three substrates.

  5. Cell cycle regulation of hematopoietic stem or progenitor cells.

    PubMed

    Hao, Sha; Chen, Chen; Cheng, Tao

    2016-05-01

    The highly regulated process of blood production is achieved through the hierarchical organization of hematopoietic stem cell (HSC) subsets and their progenies, which differ in self-renewal and differentiation potential. Genetic studies in mice have demonstrated that cell cycle is tightly controlled by the complex interplay between extrinsic cues and intrinsic regulatory pathways involved in HSC self-renewal and differentiation. Deregulation of these cellular programs may transform HSCs or hematopoietic progenitor cells (HPCs) into disease-initiating stem cells, and can result in hematopoietic malignancies such as leukemia. While previous studies have shown roles for some cell cycle regulators and related signaling pathways in HSCs and HPCs, a more complete picture regarding the molecular mechanisms underlying cell cycle regulation in HSCs or HPCs is lacking. Based on accumulated studies in this field, the present review introduces the basic components of the cell cycle machinery and discusses their major cellular networks that regulate the dormancy and cell cycle progression of HSCs. Knowledge on this topic would help researchers and clinicians to better understand the pathogenesis of relevant blood disorders and to develop new strategies for therapeutic manipulation of HSCs.

  6. Nanoparticle Facilitated Extracellular Electron Transfer in Microbial Fuel Cells

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2014-10-13

    KEYWORDS: Bacteria, facilitated electron transport, electrochemically active, iron sulfide, Shewanella Microbial fuel cells (MFCs) are capable of...to MFC technology is the unique capability of electrochemically active bacteria, such as Shewanella and Geobacter, to divert electrons from the... electrochemical studies also demonstra- ted that the current contribution from remote bacterial cells was significantly diminished at longer cell−electrode dis

  7. Municipal solid waste landfill leachate treatment and electricity production using microbial fuel cells.

    PubMed

    Damiano, Lisa; Jambeck, Jenna R; Ringelberg, David B

    2014-05-01

    Microbial fuel cells were designed and operated to treat landfill leachate while simultaneously producing electricity. Two designs were tested in batch cycles using landfill leachate as a substrate without inoculation (908 to 3,200 mg/L chemical oxygen demand (COD)): Circle (934 mL) and large-scale microbial fuel cells (MFC) (18.3 L). A total of seven cycles were completed for the Circle MFC and two cycles for the larger-scale MFC. Maximum power densities of 24 to 31 mW/m(2) (653 to 824 mW/m(3)) were achieved using the Circle MFC, and a maximum voltage of 635 mV was produced using the larger-scale MFC. In the Circle MFC, COD, biological oxygen demand (BOD), total organic carbon (TOC), and ammonia were removed at an average of 16%, 62%, 23%, and 20%, respectively. The larger-scale MFC achieved an average of 74% BOD removal, 27% TOC removal, and 25% ammonia reduction while operating over 52 days. Analysis of the microbial characteristics of the leachate indicates that there might be both supportive and inhibiting bacteria in landfill leachate for operation of an MFC. Issues related to scale-up and heterogeneity of a mixed substrate remain.

  8. 4D chromatin dynamics in cycling cells

    PubMed Central

    Strickfaden, Hilmar; Zunhammer, Andreas; van Koningsbruggen, Silvana; Köhler, Daniela

    2010-01-01

    This live cell study of chromatin dynamics in four dimensions (space and time) in cycling human cells provides direct evidence for three hypotheses first proposed by Theodor Boveri in seminal studies of fixed blastomeres from Parascaris equorum embryos: (I) Chromosome territory (CT) arrangements are stably maintained during interphase. (II) Chromosome proximity patterns change profoundly during prometaphase. (III) Similar CT proximity patterns in pairs of daughter nuclei reflect symmetrical chromosomal movements during anaphase and telophase, but differ substantially from the arrangement in mother cell nucleus. Hypothesis I could be confirmed for the majority of interphase cells. A minority, however, showed complex, rotational movements of CT assemblies with large-scale changes of CT proximity patterns, while radial nuclear arrangements were maintained. A new model of chromatin dynamics is proposed. It suggests that long-range DNA-DNA interactions in cell nuclei may depend on a combination of rotational CT movements and locally constrained chromatin movements. PMID:21327076

  9. Microbial electrodialysis cell for simultaneous water desalination and hydrogen gas production.

    PubMed

    Mehanna, Maha; Kiely, Patrick D; Call, Douglas F; Logan, Bruce E

    2010-12-15

    A new approach to water desalination is to use exoelectrogenic bacteria to generate electrical power from the biodegradation of organic matter, moving charged ions from a middle chamber between two membranes in a type of microbial fuel cell called a microbial desalination cell. Desalination efficiency using this approach is limited by the voltage produced by the bacteria. Here we examine an alternative strategy based on boosting the voltage produced by the bacteria to achieve hydrogen gas evolution from the cathode using a three-chambered system we refer to as a microbial electrodialysis cell (MEDC). We examined the use of the MEDC process using two different initial NaCl concentrations of 5 g/L and 20 g/L. Conductivity in the desalination chamber was reduced by up to 68 ± 3% in a single fed-batch cycle, with electrical energy efficiencies reaching 231 ± 59%, and maximum hydrogen production rates of 0.16 ± 0.05 m(3) H(2)/m(3) d obtained at an applied voltage of 0.55 V. The advantage of this system compared to a microbial fuel cell approach is that the potentials between the electrodes can be better controlled, and the hydrogen gas that is produced can be used to recover energy to make the desalination process self-sustaining with respect to electrical power requirements.

  10. Biochar impacts soil microbial community composition and nitrogen cycling in an acidic soil planted with rape.

    PubMed

    Xu, Hui-Juan; Wang, Xiao-Hui; Li, Hu; Yao, Huai-Ying; Su, Jian-Qiang; Zhu, Yong-Guan

    2014-08-19

    Biochar has been suggested to improve acidic soils and to mitigate greenhouse gas emissions. However, little has been done on the role of biochar in ameliorating acidified soils induced by overuse of nitrogen fertilizers. In this study, we designed a pot trial with an acidic soil (pH 4.48) in a greenhouse to study the interconnections between microbial community, soil chemical property changes, and N2O emissions after biochar application. The results showed that biochar increased plant growth, soil pH, total carbon, total nitrogen, C/N ratio, and soil cation exchange capacity. The results of high-throughput sequencing showed that biochar application increased α-diversity significantly and changed the relative abundances of some microbes that are related with carbon and nitrogen cycling at the family level. Biochar amendment stimulated both nitrification and denitrification processes, while reducing N2O emissions overall. Results of redundancy analysis indicated biochar could shift the soil microbial community by changing soil chemical properties, which modulate N-cycling processes and soil N2O emissions. The significantly increased nosZ transcription suggests that biochar decreased soil N2O emissions by enhancing its further reduction to N2.

  11. The microbial nitrogen cycling potential is impacted by polyaromatic hydrocarbon pollution of marine sediments.

    PubMed

    Scott, Nicole M; Hess, Matthias; Bouskill, Nick J; Mason, Olivia U; Jansson, Janet K; Gilbert, Jack A

    2014-01-01

    During hydrocarbon exposure, the composition and functional dynamics of marine microbial communities are altered, favoring bacteria that can utilize this rich carbon source. Initial exposure of high levels of hydrocarbons in aerobic surface sediments can enrich growth of heterotrophic microorganisms having hydrocarbon degradation capacity. As a result, there can be a localized reduction in oxygen potential within the surface layer of marine sediments causing anaerobic zones. We hypothesized that increasing exposure to elevated hydrocarbon concentrations would positively correlate with an increase in denitrification processes and the net accumulation of dinitrogen. This hypothesis was tested by comparing the relative abundance of genes associated with nitrogen metabolism and nitrogen cycling identified in 6 metagenomes from sediments contaminated by polyaromatic hydrocarbons from the Deepwater Horizon (DWH) oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico, and 3 metagenomes from sediments associated with natural oil seeps in the Santa Barbara Channel. An additional 8 metagenomes from uncontaminated sediments from the Gulf of Mexico were analyzed for comparison. We predicted relative changes in metabolite turnover as a function of the differential microbial gene abundances, which showed predicted accumulation of metabolites associated with denitrification processes, including anammox, in the contaminated samples compared to uncontaminated sediments, with the magnitude of this change being positively correlated to the hydrocarbon concentration and exposure duration. These data highlight the potential impact of hydrocarbon inputs on N cycling processes in marine sediments and provide information relevant for system scale models of nitrogen metabolism in affected ecosystems.

  12. Cell cycle regulation in human embryonic stem cells: links to adaptation to cell culture.

    PubMed

    Barta, Tomas; Dolezalova, Dasa; Holubcova, Zuzana; Hampl, Ales

    2013-03-01

    Cell cycle represents not only a tightly orchestrated mechanism of cell replication and cell division but it also plays an important role in regulation of cell fate decision. Particularly in the context of pluripotent stem cells or multipotent progenitor cells, regulation of cell fate decision is of paramount importance. It has been shown that human embryonic stem cells (hESCs) show unique cell cycle characteristics, such as short doubling time due to abbreviated G1 phase; these properties change with the onset of differentiation. This review summarizes the current understanding of cell cycle regulation in hESCs. We discuss cell cycle properties as well as regulatory machinery governing cell cycle progression of undifferentiated hESCs. Additionally, we provide evidence that long-term culture of hESCs is accompanied by changes in cell cycle properties as well as configuration of several cell cycle regulatory molecules.

  13. Organo-mineral complexation alters carbon and nitrogen cycling in stream microbial assemblages

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hunter, William Ross; Wanek, Wolfgang; Prommer, Judith; Mooshammer, Maria; Battin, Tom

    2014-05-01

    Inland waters are of global biogeochemical importance receiving carbon inputs of ~ 4.8 Pg C y-1. Of this 12 % is buried, 18 % transported to the oceans, and 70 % supports aquatic secondary production. However, the mechanisms that determine the fate of organic matter (OM) in these systems are poorly defined. One important aspect is the formation of organo-mineral complexes in aquatic systems and their potential as a route for OM transport and burial vs. microbial utilization as organic carbon (C) and nitrogen (N) sources. Organo-mineral particles form by sorption of dissolved OM to freshly eroded mineral surfaces and may contribute to ecosystem-scale particulate OM fluxes. We tested the availability of mineral-sorbed OM as a C & N source for streamwater microbial assemblages and streambed biofilms. Organo-mineral particles were constructed in vitro by sorption of 13C:15N-labelled amino acids to hydrated kaolin particles, and microbial degradation of these particles compared with equivalent doses of 13C:15N-labelled free amino acids. Experiments were conducted in 120 ml mesocosms over 7 days using biofilms and streamwater sampled from the Oberer Seebach stream (Austria), tracing assimilation and mineralization of 13C and 15N labels from mineral-sorbed and dissolved amino acids. Here we present data on the effects of organo-mineral sorption upon amino acid mineralization and its C:N stoichiometry. Organo-mineral sorption had a significant effect upon microbial activity, restricting C and N mineralization by both the biofilm and streamwater treatments. Distinct differences in community response were observed, with both dissolved and mineral-stabilized amino acids playing an enhanced role in the metabolism of the streamwater microbial community. Mineral-sorption of amino acids differentially affected C & N mineralization and reduced the C:N ratio of the dissolved amino acid pool. The present study demonstrates that organo-mineral complexes restrict microbial degradation

  14. Biostimulation induces syntrophic interactions that impact C, S and N cycling in a sediment microbial community

    SciTech Connect

    Handley, KM; Verberkmoes, Nathan C; Steefel, Carl I; Sharon, I; Williams, Ken; Miller, CS; Frischkorn, Kyle C; Chourey, Karuna; Thomas, Brian; Shah, Manesh B; Long, Phil; Hettich, Robert {Bob} L; Banfield, Jillian F.

    2013-01-01

    Stimulation of subsurface microorganisms to induce reductive immobilization of metals is a promising approach for bioremediation, yet the overall microbial community response is typically poorly understood. Here we used community proteogenomics to test the hypothesis that excess input of acetate activates syntrophic interactions among autotrophs and heterotrophs. A flow-through sediment column was incubated in a groundwater well of an acetate-amended aquifer. Genomic sequences from the community recovered during microbial sulfate reduction were used to econstruct, de novo, near-complete genomes for Desulfobacter (Deltaproteobacteria) and relatives of Sulfurovum and Sulfurimonas (Epsilonproteobacteria), and Bacteroidetes. Partial genomes were obtained for Clostridiales (Firmicutes) and Desulfuromonadales-like Deltaproteobacteria. The majority of proteins identified by mass spectrometry corresponded to Desulfobacter-like species, and demonstrate the role of this organism in sulfate reduction (Dsr and APS), nitrogen-fixation (Nif) and acetate oxidation to CO2 during amendment. Results suggest less abundant Desulfuromonadales and Bacteroidetes also actively contributed to CO2 production via the TCA cycle. Proteomic data indicate that sulfide was partially re-oxidized by Epsilonproteobacteria through nitrate-dependent sulfide oxidation (using Nap, Nir, Nos, SQR and Sox), with CO2 fixed using the reverse TCA cycle. Modeling shows that this reaction was thermodynamically possible, and kinetically favorable relative to acetate-dependent denitrification. We conclude that high-levels of carbon amendment aimed to stimulate anaerobic heterotrophy led to carbon fixation in co-dependent chemoautotrophs. These results have implications for understanding complex ecosystem behavior, and show that high levels of organic carbon supplementation can expand the range of microbial functionalities accessible for ecosystem manipulation.

  15. Microbial iron oxidation in the Arctic tundra and its implications for biogeochemical cycling.

    PubMed

    Emerson, David; Scott, Jarrod J; Benes, Joshua; Bowden, William B

    2015-12-01

    The role that neutrophilic iron-oxidizing bacteria play in the Arctic tundra is unknown. This study surveyed chemosynthetic iron-oxidizing communities at the North Slope of Alaska near Toolik Field Station (TFS) at Toolik Lake (lat 68.63, long -149.60). Microbial iron mats were common in submerged habitats with stationary or slowly flowing water, and their greatest areal extent is in coating plant stems and sediments in wet sedge meadows. Some Fe-oxidizing bacteria (FeOB) produce easily recognized sheath or stalk morphotypes that were present and dominant in all the mats we observed. The cool water temperatures (9 to 11°C) and reduced pH (5.0 to 6.6) at all sites kinetically favor microbial iron oxidation. A microbial survey of five sites based on 16S rRNA genes found a predominance of Proteobacteria, with Betaproteobacteria and members of the family Comamonadaceae being the most prevalent operational taxonomic units (OTUs). In relative abundance, clades of lithotrophic FeOB composed 5 to 10% of the communities. OTUs related to cyanobacteria and chloroplasts accounted for 3 to 25% of the communities. Oxygen profiles showed evidence for oxygenic photosynthesis at the surface of some mats, indicating the coexistence of photosynthetic and FeOB populations. The relative abundance of OTUs belonging to putative Fe-reducing bacteria (FeRB) averaged around 11% in the sampled iron mats. Mats incubated anaerobically with 10 mM acetate rapidly initiated Fe reduction, indicating that active iron cycling is likely. The prevalence of iron mats on the tundra might impact the carbon cycle through lithoautotrophic chemosynthesis, anaerobic respiration of organic carbon coupled to iron reduction, and the suppression of methanogenesis, and it potentially influences phosphorus dynamics through the adsorption of phosphorus to iron oxides.

  16. Microbial Iron Oxidation in the Arctic Tundra and Its Implications for Biogeochemical Cycling

    PubMed Central

    Scott, Jarrod J.; Benes, Joshua; Bowden, William B.

    2015-01-01

    The role that neutrophilic iron-oxidizing bacteria play in the Arctic tundra is unknown. This study surveyed chemosynthetic iron-oxidizing communities at the North Slope of Alaska near Toolik Field Station (TFS) at Toolik Lake (lat 68.63, long −149.60). Microbial iron mats were common in submerged habitats with stationary or slowly flowing water, and their greatest areal extent is in coating plant stems and sediments in wet sedge meadows. Some Fe-oxidizing bacteria (FeOB) produce easily recognized sheath or stalk morphotypes that were present and dominant in all the mats we observed. The cool water temperatures (9 to 11°C) and reduced pH (5.0 to 6.6) at all sites kinetically favor microbial iron oxidation. A microbial survey of five sites based on 16S rRNA genes found a predominance of Proteobacteria, with Betaproteobacteria and members of the family Comamonadaceae being the most prevalent operational taxonomic units (OTUs). In relative abundance, clades of lithotrophic FeOB composed 5 to 10% of the communities. OTUs related to cyanobacteria and chloroplasts accounted for 3 to 25% of the communities. Oxygen profiles showed evidence for oxygenic photosynthesis at the surface of some mats, indicating the coexistence of photosynthetic and FeOB populations. The relative abundance of OTUs belonging to putative Fe-reducing bacteria (FeRB) averaged around 11% in the sampled iron mats. Mats incubated anaerobically with 10 mM acetate rapidly initiated Fe reduction, indicating that active iron cycling is likely. The prevalence of iron mats on the tundra might impact the carbon cycle through lithoautotrophic chemosynthesis, anaerobic respiration of organic carbon coupled to iron reduction, and the suppression of methanogenesis, and it potentially influences phosphorus dynamics through the adsorption of phosphorus to iron oxides. PMID:26386054

  17. Linking Sediment Microbial Communities to Carbon Cycling in High-Latitude Lakes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Emerson, J. B.; Varner, R. K.; Johnson, J. E.; Owusu-Dommey, A.; Binder, M.; Woodcroft, B. J.; Wik, M.; Freitas, N. L.; Boyd, J. A.; Crill, P. M.; Saleska, S. R.; Tyson, G. W.; Rich, V. I.

    2015-12-01

    It is well recognized that thawing permafrost peatlands are likely to provide a positive feedback to climate change via CH4 and CO2 emissions. High-latitude lakes in these landscapes have also been identified as sources of CH4 and CO2 loss to the atmosphere. To investigate microbial contributions to carbon loss from high-latitude lakes, we characterized sediment geochemistry and microbiota via cores collected from deep and shallow regions of two lakes (Inre Harrsjön and Mellersta Harrsjön) in Arctic Sweden in July, 2012. These lakes are within the Stordalen Mire long-term ecological area, a focal site for investigating the impacts of climate change-related permafrost thaw, and the lakes in this area are responsible for ~55% of the CH4 loss from this hydrologically interconnected system. Across 40 samples from 4 to 40 cm deep within four sediment cores, Illumina 16S rRNA gene sequencing revealed that the sedimentary microbiota was dominated by candidate phyla OP9 and OP8 (Atribacteria and Aminicenantes, respectively, including putative fermenters and anaerobic respirers), predicted methanotrophic Gammaproteobacteria, and predicted methanogenic archaea from the Thermoplasmata Group E2 clade. We observed some overlap in community structure with nearby peatlands, which tend to be dominated by methanogens and Acidobacteria. Sediment microbial communities differed significantly between lakes, by overlying lake depth (shallow vs. deep), and by depth within a core, with each trend corresponding to parallel differences in biogeochemical measurements. Overall, our results support the potential for significant microbial controls on carbon cycling in high-latitude lakes associated with thawing permafrost, and ongoing metagenomic analyses of focal samples will yield further insight into the functional potential of these microbial communities and their dominant members.

  18. A thermodynamic cycle for the solar cell

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Alicki, Robert; Gelbwaser-Klimovsky, David; Jenkins, Alejandro

    2017-03-01

    A solar cell is a heat engine, but textbook treatments are not wholly satisfactory from a thermodynamic standpoint, since they present solar cells as directly converting the energy of light into electricity, and the current in the circuit as maintained by an electrostatic potential. We propose a thermodynamic cycle in which the gas of electrons in the p phase serves as the working substance. The interface between the p and n phases acts as a self-oscillating piston that modulates the absorption of heat from the photons so that it may perform a net positive work during a complete cycle of its motion, in accordance with the laws of thermodynamics. We draw a simple hydrodynamical analogy between this model and the ;putt-putt; engine of toy boats, in which the interface between the water's liquid and gas phases serves as the piston. We point out some testable consequences of this model.

  19. A metabolic thermodynamic theory of cell cycle

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kummer, A.; Ocone, R.

    2003-08-01

    Due to its intrinsic complexity, a complete mathematical description of the cell cycle appears a difficult task. Nevertheless, a preliminary analysis, based on molecular biology, can help in clarifying what are the reliable tools for a quantitative approach. In a previous paper [Physica A 321 (3-4) (2003) 587], the steps to be followed to formulate a metabolic statistical thermodynamics have been established. Here we present a simple mathematical model for the interaction of CyclinB and Cdh1 [The Cell Cycle. An Introduction, Oxford University Press, New York, 1993], with the aim of analysing the properties of the system from a thermodynamic viewpoint. The model is shown to define the Gibbs phase integral of the system and the general Gibbs energy function is obtained. This, together with the analogue of the temperature, defines the working tools indispensable for the formulation of a metabolic statistical thermodynamic-like theory.

  20. Batteryless, wireless sensor powered by a sediment microbial fuel cell.

    PubMed

    Donovan, Conrad; Dewan, Alim; Heo, Deukhyoun; Beyenal, Haluk

    2008-11-15

    Sediment microbial fuel cells (SMFCs) are considered to be an alternative renewable power source for remote monitoring. There are two main challenges to using SMFCs as power sources: 1) a SMFC produces a low potential at which most sensor electronics do not operate, and 2) a SMFC cannot provide continuous power, so energy from the SMFC must be stored and then used to repower sensor electronics intermittently. In this study, we developed a SMFC and a power management system (PMS) to power a batteryless, wireless sensor. A SMFC operating with a microbial anode and cathode, located in the Palouse River, Pullman, Washington, U.S.A., was used to demonstrate the utility of the developed system. The designed PMS stored microbial energy and then started powering the wireless sensor when the SMFC potential reached 320 mV. It continued powering until the SMFC potential dropped below 52 mV. The system was repowered when the SMFC potential increased to 320 mV, and this repowering continued as long as microbial reactions continued. We demonstrated that a microbial fuel cell with a microbial anode and cathode can be used as an effective renewable power source for remote monitoring using custom-designed electronics.

  1. Microbial community structure of different electrode materials in constructed wetland incorporating microbial fuel cell.

    PubMed

    Wang, Junfeng; Song, Xinshan; Wang, Yuhui; Abayneh, Befkadu; Ding, Yi; Yan, Denghua; Bai, Junhong

    2016-12-01

    The microbial fuel cell coupled with constructed wetland (CW-MFC) microcosms were operated under fed-batch mode for evaluating the effect of electrode materials on bioelectricity generation and microbial community composition. Experimental results indicated that the bioenergy output in CW-MFC increased with the substrate concentration; maximum average voltage (177mV) was observed in CW-MFC with carbon fiber felt (CFF). In addition, the four different materials resulted in the formation of significantly different microbial community distribution around the anode electrode. The relative abundance of Proteobacteria in CFF and foamed nickel (FN) was significantly higher than that in stainless steel mesh (SSM) and graphite rod (GR) samples. Notably, the findings indicate that CW-MFC utilizing FN anode electrode could apparently improve relative abundance of Dechloromonas, which has been regarded as a denitrifying and phosphate accumulating microorganism.

  2. Simultaneous microbial and electrochemical reductions of vanadium (V) with bioelectricity generation in microbial fuel cells.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Baogang; Tian, Caixing; Liu, Ying; Hao, Liting; Liu, Ye; Feng, Chuanping; Liu, Yuqian; Wang, Zhongli

    2015-03-01

    Simultaneous microbial and electrochemical reductions of vanadium (V) with bioelectricity generation were realized in microbial fuel cells (MFCs). With initial V(V) concentrations of 75 mg/l and 150 mg/l in anolyte and catholyte, respectively, stable power output of 419±11 mW/m(2) was achieved. After 12h operation, V(V) concentration in the catholyte decreased to the value similar to that of the initial one in the anolyte, meanwhile it was nearly reduced completely in the anolyte. V(IV) was the main reduction product, which subsequently precipitated, acquiring total vanadium removal efficiencies of 76.8±2.9%. Microbial community analysis revealed the emergence of the new species of Deltaproteobacteria and Bacteroidetes as well as the enhanced Spirochaetes mainly functioned in the anode. This study opens new pathways to successful remediation of vanadium contamination.

  3. Electricity generation and microbial community changes in microbial fuel cells packed with different anodic materials.

    PubMed

    Sun, Yanmei; Wei, Jincheng; Liang, Peng; Huang, Xia

    2011-12-01

    Four materials, carbon felt cube (CFC), granular graphite (GG), granular activated carbon (GAC) and granular semicoke (GS) were tested as packed anodic materials to seek a potentially practical material for microbial fuel cells (MFCs). The microbial community and its correlation with the electricity generation performance of MFCs were explored. The maximum power density was found in GAC, followed by CFC, GG and GS. In GAC and CFC packed MFCs, Geobacter was the dominating genus, while Azospira was the most populous group in GG. Results further indicated that GAC was the most favorable for Geobacter adherence and growth, and the maximum power densities had positive correlation with the total biomass and the relative abundance of Geobacter, but without apparent correlation with the microbial diversity. Due to the low content of Geobacter in GS, power generated in this system may be attributed to other microorganisms such as Synergistes, Bacteroidetes and Castellaniella.

  4. The cell cycle as a brake for β-cell regeneration from embryonic stem cells.

    PubMed

    El-Badawy, Ahmed; El-Badri, Nagwa

    2016-01-13

    The generation of insulin-producing β cells from stem cells in vitro provides a promising source of cells for cell transplantation therapy in diabetes. However, insulin-producing cells generated from human stem cells show deficiency in many functional characteristics compared with pancreatic β cells. Recent reports have shown molecular ties between the cell cycle and the differentiation mechanism of embryonic stem (ES) cells, assuming that cell fate decisions are controlled by the cell cycle machinery. Both β cells and ES cells possess unique cell cycle machinery yet with significant contrasts. In this review, we compare the cell cycle control mechanisms in both ES cells and β cells, and highlight the fundamental differences between pluripotent cells of embryonic origin and differentiated β cells. Through critical analysis of the differences of the cell cycle between these two cell types, we propose that the cell cycle of ES cells may act as a brake for β-cell regeneration. Based on these differences, we discuss the potential of modulating the cell cycle of ES cells for the large-scale generation of functionally mature β cells in vitro. Further understanding of the factors that modulate the ES cell cycle will lead to new approaches to enhance the production of functional mature insulin-producing cells, and yield a reliable system to generate bona fide β cells in vitro.

  5. Protozoan grazing reduces the current output of microbial fuel cells.

    PubMed

    Holmes, Dawn E; Nevin, Kelly P; Snoeyenbos-West, Oona L; Woodard, Trevor L; Strickland, Justin N; Lovley, Derek R

    2015-10-01

    Several experiments were conducted to determine whether protozoan grazing can reduce current output from sediment microbial fuel cells. When marine sediments were amended with eukaryotic inhibitors, the power output from the fuel cells increased 2-5-fold. Quantitative PCR showed that Geobacteraceae sequences were 120 times more abundant on anodes from treated fuel cells compared to untreated fuel cells, and that Spirotrichea sequences in untreated fuel cells were 200 times more abundant on anode surfaces than in the surrounding sediments. Defined studies with current-producing biofilms of Geobacter sulfurreducens and pure cultures of protozoa demonstrated that protozoa that were effective in consuming G. sulfurreducens reduced current production up to 91% when added to G. sulfurreducens fuel cells. These results suggest that anode biofilms are an attractive food source for protozoa and that protozoan grazing can be an important factor limiting the current output of sediment microbial fuel cells.

  6. Targeting cell cycle regulators in hematologic malignancies

    PubMed Central

    Aleem, Eiman; Arceci, Robert J.

    2015-01-01

    Hematologic malignancies represent the fourth most frequently diagnosed cancer in economically developed countries. In hematologic malignancies normal hematopoiesis is interrupted by uncontrolled growth of a genetically altered stem or progenitor cell (HSPC) that maintains its ability of self-renewal. Cyclin-dependent kinases (CDKs) not only regulate the mammalian cell cycle, but also influence other vital cellular processes, such as stem cell renewal, differentiation, transcription, epigenetic regulation, apoptosis, and DNA repair. Chromosomal translocations, amplification, overexpression and altered CDK activities have been described in different types of human cancer, which have made them attractive targets for pharmacological inhibition. Mouse models deficient for one or more CDKs have significantly contributed to our current understanding of the physiological functions of CDKs, as well as their roles in human cancer. The present review focuses on selected cell cycle kinases with recent emerging key functions in hematopoiesis and in hematopoietic malignancies, such as CDK6 and its role in MLL-rearranged leukemia and acute lymphocytic leukemia, CDK1 and its regulator WEE-1 in acute myeloid leukemia (AML), and cyclin C/CDK8/CDK19 complexes in T-cell acute lymphocytic leukemia. The knowledge gained from gene knockout experiments in mice of these kinases is also summarized. An overview of compounds targeting these kinases, which are currently in clinical development in various solid tumors and hematopoietic malignances, is presented. These include the CDK4/CDK6 inhibitors (palbociclib, LEE011, LY2835219), pan-CDK inhibitors that target CDK1 (dinaciclib, flavopiridol, AT7519, TG02, P276-00, terampeprocol and RGB 286638) as well as the WEE-1 kinase inhibitor, MK-1775. The advantage of combination therapy of cell cycle inhibitors with conventional chemotherapeutic agents used in the treatment of AML, such as cytarabine, is discussed. PMID:25914884

  7. Ionizing radiation damage to cells: effects of cell cycle redistribution.

    PubMed

    Chen, P L; Brenner, D J; Sachs, R K

    1995-04-01

    If a population of cycling cells is exposed to a fixed dose of ionizing radiation delivered over time T, it is sometimes observed that increasing T increases the amount of cell killing. This is essentially because at first the radiation preferentially kills cells in a sensitive portion of the cycle and the surviving, more resistant cells then have time to reach more sensitive stages. We refer to this effect as population resensitization, caused by redistribution within the cell cycle. We investigate the effect theoretically by employing the McKendrick-von Foerster equation for age-structured proliferating cell populations, generalized by introducing a radiation damage term. Within our formalism, we show that population resensitization occurs whenever: (a) prior to irradiation the cell population has the stable age-distribution approached asymptotically by an unirradiated population, and (b) T is sufficiently small. Examples and other cases are outlined. The methods of Volterra integral equations, renewal theory, and positive semigroup theory are applied. The effect of varying T is evaluated by considering the ultimate amplitude of the stable age-distribution population at times much greater than both the irradiation duration and the average cell-cycle time. The main biological limitations of the formalism are the following: considering only radiation damage which is not subject to enzymatic repair or quadratic misrepair, using an overly naive method of ensuring loss of cell cycle synchrony, neglecting nonlinear effects such as density inhibition of growth, and neglecting radiatively induced perturbations of the cell cycle. Possible methods for removing these limitations are briefly discussed.

  8. Recognition of Microbial Glycolipids by Natural Killer T Cells

    PubMed Central

    Zajonc, Dirk M.; Girardi, Enrico

    2015-01-01

    T cells can recognize microbial antigens when presented by dedicated antigen-presenting molecules. While peptides are presented by classical members of the major histocompatibility complex (MHC) family (MHC I and II), lipids, glycolipids, and lipopeptides can be presented by the non-classical MHC member, CD1. The best studied subset of lipid-reactive T cells are type I natural killer T (iNKT) cells that recognize a variety of different antigens when presented by the non-classical MHCI homolog CD1d. iNKT cells have been shown to be important for the protection against various microbial pathogens, including B. burgdorferi, the causative agents of Lyme disease, and S. pneumoniae, which causes pneumococcal meningitis and community-acquired pneumonia. Both pathogens carry microbial glycolipids that can trigger the T cell antigen receptor (TCR), leading to iNKT cell activation. iNKT cells have an evolutionary conserved TCR alpha chain, yet retain the ability to recognize structurally diverse glycolipids. They do so using a conserved recognition mode, in which the TCR enforces a conserved binding orientation on CD1d. TCR binding is accompanied by structural changes within the TCR binding site of CD1d, as well as the glycolipid antigen itself. In addition to direct recognition of microbial antigens, iNKT cells can also be activated by a combination of cytokines (IL-12/IL-18) and TCR stimulation. Many microbes carry TLR antigens, and microbial infections can lead to TLR activation. The subsequent cytokine response in turn lower the threshold of TCR-mediated iNKT cell activation, especially when weak microbial or even self-antigens are presented during the cause of the infection. In summary, iNKT cells can be directly activated through TCR triggering of strong antigens, while cytokines produced by the innate immune response may be necessary for TCR triggering and iNKT cell activation in the presence of weak antigens. Here, we will review the molecular basis of iNKT cell

  9. Production Strategies and Applications of Microbial Single Cell Oils

    PubMed Central

    Ochsenreither, Katrin; Glück, Claudia; Stressler, Timo; Fischer, Lutz; Syldatk, Christoph

    2016-01-01

    Polyunsaturated fatty acids (PUFAs) of the ω-3 and ω-6 class (e.g., α-linolenic acid, linoleic acid) are essential for maintaining biofunctions in mammalians like humans. Due to the fact that humans cannot synthesize these essential fatty acids, they must be taken up from different food sources. Classical sources for these fatty acids are porcine liver and fish oil. However, microbial lipids or single cell oils, produced by oleaginous microorganisms such as algae, fungi and bacteria, are a promising source as well. These single cell oils can be used for many valuable chemicals with applications not only for nutrition but also for fuels and are therefore an ideal basis for a bio-based economy. A crucial point for the establishment of microbial lipids utilization is the cost-effective production and purification of fuels or products of higher value. The fermentative production can be realized by submerged (SmF) or solid state fermentation (SSF). The yield and the composition of the obtained microbial lipids depend on the type of fermentation and the particular conditions (e.g., medium, pH-value, temperature, aeration, nitrogen source). From an economical point of view, waste or by-product streams can be used as cheap and renewable carbon and nitrogen sources. In general, downstream processing costs are one of the major obstacles to be solved for full economic efficiency of microbial lipids. For the extraction of lipids from microbial biomass cell disruption is most important, because efficiency of cell disruption directly influences subsequent downstream operations and overall extraction efficiencies. A multitude of cell disruption and lipid extraction methods are available, conventional as well as newly emerging methods, which will be described and discussed in terms of large scale applicability, their potential in a modern biorefinery and their influence on product quality. Furthermore, an overview is given about applications of microbial lipids or derived fatty

  10. Production Strategies and Applications of Microbial Single Cell Oils.

    PubMed

    Ochsenreither, Katrin; Glück, Claudia; Stressler, Timo; Fischer, Lutz; Syldatk, Christoph

    2016-01-01

    Polyunsaturated fatty acids (PUFAs) of the ω-3 and ω-6 class (e.g., α-linolenic acid, linoleic acid) are essential for maintaining biofunctions in mammalians like humans. Due to the fact that humans cannot synthesize these essential fatty acids, they must be taken up from different food sources. Classical sources for these fatty acids are porcine liver and fish oil. However, microbial lipids or single cell oils, produced by oleaginous microorganisms such as algae, fungi and bacteria, are a promising source as well. These single cell oils can be used for many valuable chemicals with applications not only for nutrition but also for fuels and are therefore an ideal basis for a bio-based economy. A crucial point for the establishment of microbial lipids utilization is the cost-effective production and purification of fuels or products of higher value. The fermentative production can be realized by submerged (SmF) or solid state fermentation (SSF). The yield and the composition of the obtained microbial lipids depend on the type of fermentation and the particular conditions (e.g., medium, pH-value, temperature, aeration, nitrogen source). From an economical point of view, waste or by-product streams can be used as cheap and renewable carbon and nitrogen sources. In general, downstream processing costs are one of the major obstacles to be solved for full economic efficiency of microbial lipids. For the extraction of lipids from microbial biomass cell disruption is most important, because efficiency of cell disruption directly influences subsequent downstream operations and overall extraction efficiencies. A multitude of cell disruption and lipid extraction methods are available, conventional as well as newly emerging methods, which will be described and discussed in terms of large scale applicability, their potential in a modern biorefinery and their influence on product quality. Furthermore, an overview is given about applications of microbial lipids or derived fatty

  11. Anodic microbial community diversity as a predictor of the power output of microbial fuel cells.

    PubMed

    Stratford, James P; Beecroft, Nelli J; Slade, Robert C T; Grüning, André; Avignone-Rossa, Claudio

    2014-03-01

    The relationship between the diversity of mixed-species microbial consortia and their electrogenic potential in the anodes of microbial fuel cells was examined using different diversity measures as predictors. Identical microbial fuel cells were sampled at multiple time-points. Biofilm and suspension communities were analysed by denaturing gradient gel electrophoresis to calculate the number and relative abundance of species. Shannon and Simpson indices and richness were examined for association with power using bivariate and multiple linear regression, with biofilm DNA as an additional variable. In simple bivariate regressions, the correlation of Shannon diversity of the biofilm and power is stronger (r=0.65, p=0.001) than between power and richness (r=0.39, p=0.076), or between power and the Simpson index (r=0.5, p=0.018). Using Shannon diversity and biofilm DNA as predictors of power, a regression model can be constructed (r=0.73, p<0.001). Ecological parameters such as the Shannon index are predictive of the electrogenic potential of microbial communities.

  12. Enhanced product formation in continuous fermentations with microbial cell recycle

    SciTech Connect

    Bull, D.N.; Young, M.D.

    1981-02-01

    The effect of partial recycle of microbial cells on the operation of a chemostat has been investigated for two fermentations. Stable steady states with and without partial cell recycle were obtained for the conversion of d-sorbitol to L-sorbose by Gluconobacter oxydans subsp. suboxydans 1916B and for the conversion of glucose to 2-ketogluconic acid by Serratia marcescens NRRl B-486. The employment of partial cell recycle dramatically increased product formation rates for both fermentations.

  13. Recent advances in microbial single cell genomics technology and applications

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Stepanauskas, R.

    2015-12-01

    Single cell genomics is increasingly utilized as a powerful tool to decipher the metabolic potential, evolutionary histories and in situ interactions of environmental microorganisms. I will present several new developments of this exciting technology, which improve genomic data recovery from individual cells and allow its integration with cell's phenotypic properties. I will also demonstrate how these new technical capabilities help understanding the biology of the "microbial dark matter" inhabiting marine and terrestrial subsurface environments.

  14. Microbial anaerobic methane cycling in the subseafloor at the Von Damm hydrothermal vent field, Mid-Cayman Rise

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Huber, J. A.; Reveillaud, J. C.; Stepanauskas, R.; McDermott, J. M.; Sylva, S. P.; Seewald, J.

    2013-12-01

    The Mid-Cayman Rise (MCR) is Earth's deepest and slowest spreading mid-ocean ridge located in the western Caribbean. With an axial rift valley floor at a depth of ~4200-6500 m, it represents one of the deepest sections of ridge crest worldwide. In 2009, the world's deepest hydrothermal vents (Piccard at 4960 m) and an ultramafic-influenced system only 20 km away on top of an oceanic core complex (Von Damm at 2350 m) were discovered along the MCR. Each site is hosted in a distinct geologic setting with different thermal and chemical regimes. The Von Damm site is a particularly interesting location to examine chemolithoautotrophic subseafloor microbial communities due to the abundant hydrogen, methane, and organic compounds in the venting fluids. Here, we used a combination of stable isotope tracing, next-generation sequencing, and single cell techniques to determine the identity, activity, and genomic repertoire of subseafloor anaerobic archaea involved in methane cycling in hydrothermal fluids venting at the Von Damm site. Molecular sequencing of phylogenetic marker genes revealed the presence of diverse archaea that both generate and consume methane across a geochemical and thermal spectrum of vents. Stable isotope tracing experiments were used to detect biological utilization of formate and dissolved inorganic carbon, and methane generation at 70 °C under anaerobic conditions. Results indicate that methanogenesis with formate as a substrate is occurring at 70 °C at two Von Damm sites, Ginger Castle and the Main Orifice. The results are consistent with thermodynamic predictions for carbon speciation at the temperatures encountered at the ultramafic-hosted Von Damm, where formate is predicted to be thermodynamically stable, and may thus serve as a an important source of carbon. Diverse thermophilic methanogenic archaea belonging to the genera Methanothermococcus were detected at all vent sites with both 16S rRNA tag sequencing and single cell sorting. Other

  15. Proliferation and cell cycle dynamics in the developing stellate ganglion.

    PubMed

    Gonsalvez, David G; Cane, Kylie N; Landman, Kerry A; Enomoto, Hideki; Young, Heather M; Anderson, Colin R

    2013-04-03

    Cell proliferation during nervous system development is poorly understood outside the mouse neocortex. We measured cell cycle dynamics in the embryonic mouse sympathetic stellate ganglion, where neuroblasts continue to proliferate following neuronal differentiation. At embryonic day (E) 9.5, when neural crest-derived cells were migrating and coalescing into the ganglion primordium, all cells were cycling, cell cycle length was only 10.6 h, and S-phase comprised over 65% of the cell cycle; these values are similar to those previously reported for embryonic stem cells. At E10.5, Sox10(+) cells lengthened their cell cycle to 38 h and reduced the length of S-phase. As cells started to express the neuronal markers Tuj1 and tyrosine hydroxylase (TH) at E10.5, they exited the cell cycle. At E11.5, when >80% of cells in the ganglion were Tuj1(+)/TH(+) neuroblasts, all cells were again cycling. Neuroblast cell cycle length did not change significantly after E11.5, and 98% of Sox10(-)/TH(+) cells had exited the cell cycle by E18.5. The cell cycle length of Sox10(+)/TH(-) cells increased during late embryonic development, and ∼25% were still cycling at E18.5. Loss of Ret increased neuroblast cell cycle length at E16.5 and decreased the number of neuroblasts at E18.5. A mathematical model generated from our data successfully predicted the relative change in proportions of neuroblasts and non-neuroblasts in wild-type mice. Our results show that, like other neurons, sympathetic neuron differentiation is associated with exit from the cell cycle; sympathetic neurons are unusual in that they then re-enter the cell cycle before later permanently exiting.

  16. Cell cycle of globose basal cells in rat olfactory epithelium.

    PubMed

    Huard, J M; Schwob, J E

    1995-05-01

    The olfactory epithelium of adult mammals has the unique property of generating olfactory sensory neurons throughout life. Cells of the basal compartment, which include horizontal and globose basal cells, are responsible for the ongoing process of neurogenesis in this system. We report here that the globose basal cells in olfactory epithelium of rats, as in mice, are the predominant type of proliferating cell, and account for 97.6% of the actively dividing cells in the basal compartment of the normal epithelium. Globose basal cells have not been fully characterized in terms of their proliferative properties, and the dynamic aspects of neurogenesis are not well understood. As a consequence, it is uncertain whether cell kinetic properties are under any regulation that could affect the rate of neurogenesis. To address this gap in our knowledge, we have determined the duration of both the synthesis phase (S-phase) and the full cell cycle of globose basal cells in adult rats. The duration of the S-phase was found to be 9 hr in experiments utilizing sequential injections of either IdU followed by BrdU or 3H-thy followed by BrdU. The duration of the cell cycle was determined by varying the time interval between the injections of 3H-thy and BrdU and tracking the set of cells that exit S shortly after the first injection. With this paradigm, the interval required for these cells to traverse G2, M, G1, and a second S-phase, is equivalent to the duration of one mitotic cycle and equals 17 hr. These observations serve as the foundation to assess whether the cell cycle duration is subject to regulation in response to experimental injury, and whether such regulation is partly responsible for changes in the rate of neurogenesis in such settings.

  17. Segregation of the Anodic Microbial Communities in a Microbial Fuel Cell Cascade

    PubMed Central

    Hodgson, Douglas M.; Smith, Ann; Dahale, Sonal; Stratford, James P.; Li, Jia V.; Grüning, André; Bushell, Michael E.; Marchesi, Julian R.; Avignone Rossa, C.

    2016-01-01

    Metabolic interactions within microbial communities are essential for the efficient degradation of complex organic compounds, and underpin natural phenomena driven by microorganisms, such as the recycling of carbon-, nitrogen-, and sulfur-containing molecules. These metabolic interactions ultimately determine the function, activity and stability of the community, and therefore their understanding would be essential to steer processes where microbial communities are involved. This is exploited in the design of microbial fuel cells (MFCs), bioelectrochemical devices that convert the chemical energy present in substrates into electrical energy through the metabolic activity of microorganisms, either single species or communities. In this work, we analyzed the evolution of the microbial community structure in a cascade of MFCs inoculated with an anaerobic microbial community and continuously fed with a complex medium. The analysis of the composition of the anodic communities revealed the establishment of different communities in the anodes of the hydraulically connected MFCs, with a decrease in the abundance of fermentative taxa and a concurrent increase in respiratory taxa along the cascade. The analysis of the metabolites in the anodic suspension showed a metabolic shift between the first and last MFC, confirming the segregation of the anodic communities. Those results suggest a metabolic interaction mechanism between the predominant fermentative bacteria at the first stages of the cascade and the anaerobic respiratory electrogenic population in the latter stages, which is reflected in the observed increase in power output. We show that our experimental system represents an ideal platform for optimization of processes where the degradation of complex substrates is involved, as well as a potential tool for the study of metabolic interactions in complex microbial communities. PMID:27242723

  18. Segregation of the Anodic Microbial Communities in a Microbial Fuel Cell Cascade.

    PubMed

    Hodgson, Douglas M; Smith, Ann; Dahale, Sonal; Stratford, James P; Li, Jia V; Grüning, André; Bushell, Michael E; Marchesi, Julian R; Avignone Rossa, C

    2016-01-01

    Metabolic interactions within microbial communities are essential for the efficient degradation of complex organic compounds, and underpin natural phenomena driven by microorganisms, such as the recycling of carbon-, nitrogen-, and sulfur-containing molecules. These metabolic interactions ultimately determine the function, activity and stability of the community, and therefore their understanding would be essential to steer processes where microbial communities are involved. This is exploited in the design of microbial fuel cells (MFCs), bioelectrochemical devices that convert the chemical energy present in substrates into electrical energy through the metabolic activity of microorganisms, either single species or communities. In this work, we analyzed the evolution of the microbial community structure in a cascade of MFCs inoculated with an anaerobic microbial community and continuously fed with a complex medium. The analysis of the composition of the anodic communities revealed the establishment of different communities in the anodes of the hydraulically connected MFCs, with a decrease in the abundance of fermentative taxa and a concurrent increase in respiratory taxa along the cascade. The analysis of the metabolites in the anodic suspension showed a metabolic shift between the first and last MFC, confirming the segregation of the anodic communities. Those results suggest a metabolic interaction mechanism between the predominant fermentative bacteria at the first stages of the cascade and the anaerobic respiratory electrogenic population in the latter stages, which is reflected in the observed increase in power output. We show that our experimental system represents an ideal platform for optimization of processes where the degradation of complex substrates is involved, as well as a potential tool for the study of metabolic interactions in complex microbial communities.

  19. A mechanistic soil biogeochemistry model with explicit representation of microbial and macrofaunal activities and nutrient cycles

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fatichi, Simone; Manzoni, Stefano; Or, Dani; Paschalis, Athanasios

    2016-04-01

    The potential of a given ecosystem to store and release carbon is inherently linked to soil biogeochemical processes. These processes are deeply connected to the water, energy, and vegetation dynamics above and belowground. Recently, it has been advocated that a mechanistic representation of soil biogeochemistry require: (i) partitioning of soil organic carbon (SOC) pools according to their functional role; (ii) an explicit representation of microbial dynamics; (iii) coupling of carbon and nutrient cycles. While some of these components have been introduced in specialized models, they have been rarely implemented in terrestrial biosphere models and tested in real cases. In this study, we combine a new soil biogeochemistry model with an existing model of land-surface hydrology and vegetation dynamics (T&C). Specifically the soil biogeochemistry component explicitly separates different litter pools and distinguishes SOC in particulate, dissolved and mineral associated fractions. Extracellular enzymes and microbial pools are explicitly represented differentiating the functional roles of bacteria, saprotrophic and mycorrhizal fungi. Microbial activity depends on temperature, soil moisture and litter or SOC stoichiometry. The activity of macrofauna is also modeled. Nutrient dynamics include the cycles of nitrogen, phosphorous and potassium. The model accounts for feedbacks between nutrient limitations and plant growth as well as for plant stoichiometric flexibility. In turn, litter input is a function of the simulated vegetation dynamics. Root exudation and export to mycorrhiza are computed based on a nutrient uptake cost function. The combined model is tested to reproduce respiration dynamics and nitrogen cycle in few sites where data were available to test plausibility of results across a range of different metrics. For instance in a Swiss grassland ecosystem, fine root, bacteria, fungal and macrofaunal respiration account for 40%, 23%, 33% and 4% of total belowground

  20. Mitochondrial Regulation of Cell Cycle and Proliferation

    PubMed Central

    Antico Arciuch, Valeria Gabriela; Elguero, María Eugenia; Poderoso, Juan José

    2012-01-01

    Abstract Eukaryotic mitochondria resulted from symbiotic incorporation of α-proteobacteria into ancient archaea species. During evolution, mitochondria lost most of the prokaryotic bacterial genes and only conserved a small fraction including those encoding 13 proteins of the respiratory chain. In this process, many functions were transferred to the host cells, but mitochondria gained a central role in the regulation of cell proliferation and apoptosis, and in the modulation of metabolism; accordingly, defective organelles contribute to cell transformation and cancer, diabetes, and neurodegenerative diseases. Most cell and transcriptional effects of mitochondria depend on the modulation of respiratory rate and on the production of hydrogen peroxide released into the cytosol. The mitochondrial oxidative rate has to remain depressed for cell proliferation; even in the presence of O2, energy is preferentially obtained from increased glycolysis (Warburg effect). In response to stress signals, traffic of pro- and antiapoptotic mitochondrial proteins in the intermembrane space (B-cell lymphoma-extra large, Bcl-2-associated death promoter, Bcl-2 associated X-protein and cytochrome c) is modulated by the redox condition determined by mitochondrial O2 utilization and mitochondrial nitric oxide metabolism. In this article, we highlight the traffic of the different canonical signaling pathways to mitochondria and the contributions of organelles to redox regulation of kinases. Finally, we analyze the dynamics of the mitochondrial population in cell cycle and apoptosis. Antioxid. Redox Signal. 16, 1150–1180. PMID:21967640

  1. Abundances and potential activities of nitrogen cycling microbial communities along a chronosequence of a glacier forefield

    PubMed Central

    Brankatschk, Robert; Töwe, Stefanie; Kleineidam, Kristina; Schloter, Michael; Zeyer, Josef

    2011-01-01

    Glacier forefields are ideal ecosystems to study the development of nutrient cycles as well as single turnover processes during soil development. In this study, we examined the ecology of the microbial nitrogen (N) cycle in bulk soil samples from a chronosequence of the Damma glacier, Switzerland. Major processes of the N cycle were reconstructed on the genetic as well as the potential enzyme activity level at sites of the chronosequence that have been ice-free for 10, 50, 70, 120 and 2000 years. In our study, we focused on N fixation, mineralization (chitinolysis and proteolysis), nitrification and denitrification. Our results suggest that mineralization, mainly the decomposition of deposited organic material, was the main driver for N turnover in initial soils, that is, ice-free for 10 years. Transient soils being ice-free for 50 and 70 years were characterized by a high abundance of N fixing microorganisms. In developed soils, ice-free for 120 and 2000 years, significant rates of nitrification and denitrification were measured. Surprisingly, copy numbers of the respective functional genes encoding the corresponding enzymes were already high in the initial phase of soil development. This clearly indicates that the genetic potential is not the driver for certain functional traits in the initial phase of soil formation but rather a well-balanced expression of the respective genes coding for selected functions. PMID:21124490

  2. Magnetic studies of ferrofluid-modified microbial cells.

    PubMed

    Mosiniewicz-Szablewska, Ewa; Safarikova, Mirka; Safarik, Ivo

    2010-04-01

    Microbial cells (Kluyveromyces fragilis and Chlorella vulgaris) efficiently interacted with maghemite nanoparticles stabilized as low-pH ionic magnetic fluid, leading to the formation of magnetically labeled cells. This simple procedure allows to use the prepared materials as new cheap and easy to get magnetic affinity adsorbents to the removal of water-soluble dyes from polluted water sources using magnetic separation techniques. Magnetically modified cells were investigated by means of electron spin resonance spectroscopy and conventional magnetic methods over the temperature range 4-300 K. The magnetic behavior of these materials was dominated by the superparamagnetic relaxation of isolated single domain maghemite particles although a little amount of agglomerates was also present on the cell surface. However, these agglomerates were sufficiently small to show at static conditions the superparamagnetic behavior at room temperature. Therefore, the ferrofluid-modified microbial cells represent new interesting magnetic affinity adsorbents which could be applied for large-scale magnetic separation processes.

  3. The cell cycle rallies the transcription cycle: Cdc28/Cdk1 is a cell cycle-regulated transcriptional CDK.

    PubMed

    Chymkowitch, Pierre; Enserink, Jorrit M

    2013-01-01

    In the budding yeast Saccharomyces cerevisiae, the cyclin-dependent kinases (CDKs) Kin28, Bur1 and Ctk1 regulate basal transcription by phosphorylating the carboxyl-terminal domain (CTD) of RNA polymerase II. However, very little is known about the involvement of the cell cycle CDK Cdc28 in the transcription process. We have recently shown that, upon cell cycle entry, Cdc28 kinase activity boosts transcription of a subset of genes by directly stimulating the basal transcription machinery. Here, we discuss the biological significance of this finding and give our view of the kinase-dependent role of Cdc28 in regulation of RNA polymerase II.

  4. Meta-omic signatures of microbial metal and nitrogen cycling in marine oxygen minimum zones

    PubMed Central

    Glass, Jennifer B.; Kretz, Cecilia B.; Ganesh, Sangita; Ranjan, Piyush; Seston, Sherry L.; Buck, Kristen N.; Landing, William M.; Morton, Peter L.; Moffett, James W.; Giovannoni, Stephen J.; Vergin, Kevin L.; Stewart, Frank J.

    2015-01-01

    Iron (Fe) and copper (Cu) are essential cofactors for microbial metalloenzymes, but little is known about the metalloenyzme inventory of anaerobic marine microbial communities despite their importance to the nitrogen cycle. We compared dissolved O2, NO3−, NO2−, Fe and Cu concentrations with nucleic acid sequences encoding Fe and Cu-binding proteins in 21 metagenomes and 9 metatranscriptomes from Eastern Tropical North and South Pacific oxygen minimum zones and 7 metagenomes from the Bermuda Atlantic Time-series Station. Dissolved Fe concentrations increased sharply at upper oxic-anoxic transition zones, with the highest Fe:Cu molar ratio (1.8) occurring at the anoxic core of the Eastern Tropical North Pacific oxygen minimum zone and matching the predicted maximum ratio based on data from diverse ocean sites. The relative abundance of genes encoding Fe-binding proteins was negatively correlated with O2, driven by significant increases in genes encoding Fe-proteins involved in dissimilatory nitrogen metabolisms under anoxia. Transcripts encoding cytochrome c oxidase, the Fe- and Cu-containing terminal reductase in aerobic respiration, were positively correlated with O2 content. A comparison of the taxonomy of genes encoding Fe- and Cu-binding vs. bulk proteins in OMZs revealed that Planctomycetes represented a higher percentage of Fe genes while Thaumarchaeota represented a higher percentage of Cu genes, particularly at oxyclines. These results are broadly consistent with higher relative abundance of genes encoding Fe-proteins in the genome of a marine planctomycete vs. higher relative abundance of genes encoding Cu-proteins in the genome of a marine thaumarchaeote. These findings highlight the importance of metalloenzymes for microbial processes in oxygen minimum zones and suggest preferential Cu use in oxic habitats with Cu > Fe vs. preferential Fe use in anoxic niches with Fe > Cu. PMID:26441925

  5. Carbon and sulfur cycling by microbial communities in a gypsum-treated oil sands tailings pond.

    PubMed

    Ramos-Padrón, Esther; Bordenave, Sylvain; Lin, Shiping; Bhaskar, Iyswarya Mani; Dong, Xiaoli; Sensen, Christoph W; Fournier, Joseph; Voordouw, Gerrit; Gieg, Lisa M

    2011-01-15

    Oil sands tailings ponds receive and store the solid and liquid waste from bitumen extraction and are managed to promote solids densification and water recycling. The ponds are highly stratified due to increasing solids content as a function of depth but can be impacted by tailings addition and removal and by convection due to microbial gas production. We characterized the microbial communities in relation to microbial activities as a function of depth in an active tailings pond routinely treated with gypsum (CaSO(4)·2H(2)O) to accelerate densification. Pyrosequencing of 16S rDNA gene sequences indicated that the aerobic surface layer, where the highest level of sulfate (6 mM) but no sulfide was detected, had a very different community profile than the rest of the pond. Deeper anaerobic layers were dominated by syntrophs (Pelotomaculum, Syntrophus, and Smithella spp.), sulfate- and sulfur-reducing bacteria (SRB, Desulfocapsa and Desulfurivibrio spp.), acetate- and H(2)-using methanogens, and a variety of other anaerobes that have been implicated in hydrocarbon utilization or iron and sulfur cycling. The SRB were most abundant from 10 to 14 mbs, bracketing the zone where the sulfate reduction rate was highest. Similarly, the most abundant methanogens and syntrophs identified as a function of depth closely mirrored the fluctuating methanogenesis rates. Methanogenesis was inhibited in laboratory incubations by nearly 50% when sulfate was supplied at pond-level concentrations suggesting that in situ sulfate reduction can substantially minimize methane emissions. Based on our data, we hypothesize that the emission of sulfide due to SRB activity in the gypsum treated pond is also limited due to its high solubility and oxidation in surface waters.

  6. Microbial cycling, oxidative weathering, and the triple oxygen isotope consequences for marine sulfate

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Johnston, D. T.; Cowie, B.; Turchyn, A. V.; Antler, G.; Gill, B. C.; Berelson, W.

    2015-12-01

    Microorganisms are responsible for most geochemical sulfur cycling in the ocean. On both modern and geological time scales, stable isotope ratios often serve as a mechanism to track conspicuous or coupled microbial processes, which in turn inform burial fluxes. The most common example of this approach is the use of sulfur isotopes in sulfate and sulfide (both aqueous and in mineral form) to track everything from rates of microbial processes through to the presence/absence of certain metabolic processes in a given environment. The use of oxygen isotope ratios in sulfate has developed in a similar fashion, providing complementary information to that of sulfur isotopes. Through our current work, we will extend the application of oxygen isotopes to include the trace stable oxygen isotope, 17O. These data are facilitated by a new laser F2 fluorination technique running at Harvard, and accompanied by the calibration of a suite of common sulfate standards. At first blush, 16O - 17O - 18O systematics should carry mass-dependent microbial fractionations with process-specific mass laws that are resolvable at the level of our analytical precision. We look to calibrate these biogeochemical effects through the integrated picture captured in marine pore water sulfate profiles, where the 18O/16O is known to evolve. In compliment, riverine sulfate (the sulfate input to the ocean) is an oxidative weathering product and is posited to carry a memory effect of tropospheric O2. Interestingly, the 17O/16O of that O2 carries a mass-independent signal reflecting the balance between stratospheric reactions and Earth surface biospheric fluxes. Through this presentation, we look to calibrate the controls on the balance between biospheric and atmospheric contributions to the marine sulfate reservoir. This is enabled by a series of isotope mass-balance models and with the ultimate goal of developing the geological triple oxygen isotope records of sulfate as a new environmental proxy for paleo

  7. Microbial Fuel Cell Performance with a Pressurized Cathode Chamber

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Microbial fuel cell (MFC) power densities are often constrained by the oxygen reduction reaction rate on the cathode electrode. One important factor for this is the normally low solubility of oxygen in the aqueous cathode solution creating mass transport limitations, which hinder oxygen reduction a...

  8. The Microbial Fuel Cell as an Education Tool

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Dewan, Alim; Van Wie, Bernard; Beyenal, Haluk; Lewandowski, Zbigniew

    2010-01-01

    Many chemical engineering programs offer courses from a variety of disciplines to teach their students multidisciplinary concepts, but often these courses lack appropriate tools for linking newly learned concepts to principles learned in the core courses. This paper describes our experience of incorporating a microbial fuel cell education module…

  9. The first self-sustainable microbial fuel cell stack.

    PubMed

    Ledezma, Pablo; Stinchcombe, Andrew; Greenman, John; Ieropoulos, Ioannis

    2013-02-21

    This study reports for the first time on the development of a self-sustainable microbial fuel cell stack capable of self-maintenance (feeding, hydration, sensing & reporting). Furthermore, the stack system is producing excess energy, which can be used for improved functionality. The self-maintenance is performed by the stack powering single and multi-channel peristaltic pumps.

  10. Oxygen - Enemy or Friend for Microbial Fuel Cell Anode Performance?

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Until recently, scientists and engineers have held a strong belief that oxygen intrusion into the anode chamber of a bioelectrochemical system (BES) is detrimental to microbial fuel cell (MFC) performance because oxygen acts as an alternate electron acceptor. This would, according to recent beliefs...

  11. Population cycles and species diversity in dynamic Kill-the-Winner model of microbial ecosystems

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Maslov, Sergei; Sneppen, Kim

    2017-01-01

    Determinants of species diversity in microbial ecosystems remain poorly understood. Bacteriophages are believed to increase the diversity by the virtue of Kill-the-Winner infection bias preventing the fastest growing organism from taking over the community. Phage-bacterial ecosystems are traditionally described in terms of the static equilibrium state of Lotka-Volterra equations in which bacterial growth is exactly balanced by losses due to phage predation. Here we consider a more dynamic scenario in which phage infections give rise to abrupt and severe collapses of bacterial populations whenever they become sufficiently large. As a consequence, each bacterial population in our model follows cyclic dynamics of exponential growth interrupted by sudden declines. The total population of all species fluctuates around the carrying capacity of the environment, making these cycles cryptic. While a subset of the slowest growing species in our model is always driven towards extinction, in general the overall ecosystem diversity remains high. The number of surviving species is inversely proportional to the variation in their growth rates but increases with the frequency and severity of phage-induced collapses. Thus counter-intuitively we predict that microbial communities exposed to more violent perturbations should have higher diversity.

  12. Population cycles and species diversity in dynamic Kill-the-Winner model of microbial ecosystems.

    PubMed

    Maslov, Sergei; Sneppen, Kim

    2017-01-04

    Determinants of species diversity in microbial ecosystems remain poorly understood. Bacteriophages are believed to increase the diversity by the virtue of Kill-the-Winner infection bias preventing the fastest growing organism from taking over the community. Phage-bacterial ecosystems are traditionally described in terms of the static equilibrium state of Lotka-Volterra equations in which bacterial growth is exactly balanced by losses due to phage predation. Here we consider a more dynamic scenario in which phage infections give rise to abrupt and severe collapses of bacterial populations whenever they become sufficiently large. As a consequence, each bacterial population in our model follows cyclic dynamics of exponential growth interrupted by sudden declines. The total population of all species fluctuates around the carrying capacity of the environment, making these cycles cryptic. While a subset of the slowest growing species in our model is always driven towards extinction, in general the overall ecosystem diversity remains high. The number of surviving species is inversely proportional to the variation in their growth rates but increases with the frequency and severity of phage-induced collapses. Thus counter-intuitively we predict that microbial communities exposed to more violent perturbations should have higher diversity.

  13. Population cycles and species diversity in dynamic Kill-the-Winner model of microbial ecosystems

    PubMed Central

    Maslov, Sergei; Sneppen, Kim

    2017-01-01

    Determinants of species diversity in microbial ecosystems remain poorly understood. Bacteriophages are believed to increase the diversity by the virtue of Kill-the-Winner infection bias preventing the fastest growing organism from taking over the community. Phage-bacterial ecosystems are traditionally described in terms of the static equilibrium state of Lotka-Volterra equations in which bacterial growth is exactly balanced by losses due to phage predation. Here we consider a more dynamic scenario in which phage infections give rise to abrupt and severe collapses of bacterial populations whenever they become sufficiently large. As a consequence, each bacterial population in our model follows cyclic dynamics of exponential growth interrupted by sudden declines. The total population of all species fluctuates around the carrying capacity of the environment, making these cycles cryptic. While a subset of the slowest growing species in our model is always driven towards extinction, in general the overall ecosystem diversity remains high. The number of surviving species is inversely proportional to the variation in their growth rates but increases with the frequency and severity of phage-induced collapses. Thus counter-intuitively we predict that microbial communities exposed to more violent perturbations should have higher diversity. PMID:28051127

  14. [Sulfate reduction and microbial processes of the methane cycle in the sediments of the Sevastopol bay].

    PubMed

    Pimenov, N V; Egorov, V N; Kanapatskiĭ, T A; Malakhova, T V; Artemov, Iu G; Sigalevich, P A; Malakhova, L V

    2013-01-01

    The rates of microbial processes of sulfate reduction and of the methane cycle were measured in the bottom sediments of the Sevastopol basin, where seeps of gaseous methane have been previously found. Typically for marine environments, sulfate reduction played the major role in the terminal phase of decomposition of organic matter (OM) in reduced sediments of this area. The rate of this process depended on the amount of available OM. The rate of methanogenesis in the sediments increased with depth, peaking in the subsurface horizons, where decreased sulfate concentration was detected in the pore water. The highest rates of sulfate-dependent anaerobic methane oxidation were found close to the methane-sulfate transition zone as is typical of most investigated marine sediments. The data on the carbon isotopic composition of gaseous methane from the seeps and dissolved CH4 from the bottom sediments, as well as on the rates of microbial methanogenesis and methane oxidation indicate that the activity of the methane seeps results from accumulation of biogenic methane in the cavities of the underlying geological structures with subsequent periodic release of methane bubbles into the water column.

  15. Microbial community dynamics in continuous microbial fuel cells fed with synthetic wastewater and pig slurry.

    PubMed

    Sotres, Ana; Tey, Laura; Bonmatí, August; Viñas, Marc

    2016-10-01

    Two-chambered microbial fuel cells (MFCs) operating with synthetic wastewater and pig slurry were assessed. Additionally, the use of 2-bromoethanesulfonate (BES-Inh) was studied. The synthetic wastewater-fed MFC (MFCSW) showed a maximum power density (PDmax) of 2138mWm(-3), and the addition of BES-Inh (10mM) did not show any improvement in its performance (PDmax=2078mWm(-3)). When pig slurry was used as feed (MFCPS), PDmax increased up to 5623mWm(-3). The microbial community composition was affected by the type of substrate used. While, Pseudomonadaceae and Clostridiaceae were the most representative families within the acetate-based medium, Flavobacteriaceae, Chitinophagaceae, Comamonadaceae and Nitrosomonadaceae were predominant when pig slurry was used as feed. Otherwise, only the Eubacterial microbial community composition was strongly modified when adding BES-Inh, thus leading to an enrichment of the Bacteroidetes phylum. Oppositely, the Archaeal community was less affected by the addition of BES-Inh, and Methanosarcina sp., arose as the predominant family in both situations. Despite all the differences in microbial communities, 6 operational taxonomic units (OTUs) belonging to Bacteroidetes (Porphyromonadaceae and Marinilabiaceae) and Firmicutes (Clostridiales) were found to be common to both MFCs, also for different contents of COD and N-NH4(+), and therefore could be considered as the bioanode core microbiome.

  16. Metabolic Differences in Microbial Cell Populations Revealed by Nanophotonic Ionization

    SciTech Connect

    Walker, Bennett; Antonakos, Cory; Retterer, Scott T; Vertes, Akos

    2013-01-01

    ellular differences are linked to cell differentiation, the proliferation of cancer and to the development of drug resistance in microbial infections. Due to sensitivity limitations, however, large- scale metabolic analysis at the single cell level is only available for cells significantly larger in volume than Saccharomyces cerevisiae (~30 fL). Here we demonstrate that by a nanophotonic ionization platform and mass spectrometry, over one hundred up to 108 metabolites, or up to 18% of the known S. cerevisiae metabolome, can be identified in very small cell populations (n < 100). Under ideal conditions, r Relative quantitation of up to 4% of the metabolites is achieved at the single cell level.

  17. Microbial community diversity associated with carbon and nitrogen cycling in permeable shelf sediments.

    PubMed

    Hunter, Evan M; Mills, Heath J; Kostka, Joel E

    2006-09-01

    Though a large fraction of primary production and organic matter cycling in the oceans occurs on continental shelves dominated by sandy deposits, the microbial communities associated with permeable shelf sediments remain poorly characterized. Therefore, in this study, we provide the first detailed characterization of microbial diversity in marine sands of the South Atlantic Bight through parallel analyses of small-subunit (SSU) rRNA gene (Bacteria), nosZ (denitrifying bacteria), and amoA (ammonia-oxidizing bacteria) sequences. Communities were analyzed by parallel DNA extractions and clone library construction from both sediment core material and manipulated sediment within column experiments designed for geochemical rate determinations. Rapid organic-matter degradation and coupled nitrification-denitrification were observed in column experiments at flow rates resembling in situ conditions over a range of oxygen concentrations. Numerous SSU rRNA phylotypes were affiliated with the phyla Proteobacteria (classes Alpha-, Delta-, and Gammaproteobacteria), Planctomycetes, Cyanobacteria, Chloroflexi, and Bacteroidetes. Detectable sequence diversity of nosZ and SSU rRNA genes increased in stratified redox-stabilized columns compared to in situ sediments, with the Alphaproteobacteria comprising the most frequently detected group. Alternatively, nitrifier communities showed a relatively low and stable diversity that did not covary with the other gene targets. Our results elucidate predominant phylotypes that are likely to catalyze carbon and nitrogen cycling in marine sands. Although overall diversity increased in response to redox stabilization and stratification in column experiments, the major phylotypes remained the same in all of our libraries, indicating that the columns sufficiently mimic in situ conditions.

  18. Microbial Fe(III) oxide reduction and Fe cycling in iron-rich freshwater wetland sediments

    SciTech Connect

    Roden, E.E.

    1995-12-31

    The dynamics of Fe cycling and the interaction between microbial Fe(III) oxide reduction and other anaerobic microbial respiratory processes were examined in Fe-rich, sulfate-poor freshwater wetland sediments. Sediment incubation experiments demonstrated that reduction of Fe(III) oxides (amorphous, soluble in dilute HCl) dominated anaerobic carbon mineralization at Fe(III) concentrations in excess of 10 mmol per liter wet sediment. The kinetics of Fe(III) reduction were found to be first-order with respect to the concentration of Fe(III) oxide, although estimated first-order rate constants varied in relation to the absolute rates of Fe(III) reduction, suggesting a co-dependency on the concentration of easily degradable organic carbon. High concentrations of amorphous Fe(III) oxides (10-100 mmol L wet sed {sup -1}) were found in surface sediments (0-3 cm) of unvegetated zones of the wetland and in the rhizosphere (0-10 cm) of emergent aquatic plants, sufficient (based on sediment incubation experiments) to allow Fe(III)-reducing bacteria (FeRB) to dominate anaerobic carbon mineralization. A rapid redox cycling of Fe is apparent in these localized zones based on observed rates of Fe(III) reduction and the abundance/depth distribution of Fe(Ill) oxides. Preliminary culture enrichment studies indicate that FeRB present in these sediments are capable of metabolizing a range of both natural and contaminant aromatic hydrocarbons, which suggests a potential for utilization of natural and/or artificial Fe-rich wetland systems for organic contaminant bioremediation.

  19. Reconstructing the Genetic Potential of the Microbially-Mediated Nitrogen Cycle in a Salt Marsh Ecosystem

    PubMed Central

    Dini-Andreote, Francisco; Brossi, Maria Julia de L.; van Elsas, Jan Dirk; Salles, Joana F.

    2016-01-01

    Coastal ecosystems are considered buffer zones for the discharge of land-derived nutrients without accounting for potential negative side effects. Hence, there is an urgent need to better understand the ecological assembly and dynamics of the microorganisms that are involved in nitrogen (N) cycling in such systems. Here, we employed two complementary methodological approaches (i.e., shotgun metagenomics and quantitative PCR) to examine the distribution and abundance of selected microbial genes involved in N transformations. We used soil samples collected along a well-established pristine salt marsh soil chronosequence that spans over a century of ecosystem development at the island of Schiermonnikoog, The Netherlands. Across the examined soil successional stages, the structure of the populations of genes involved in N cycling processes was strongly related to (shifts in the) soil nitrogen levels (i.e., NO3−, NH4+), salinity and pH (explaining 73.8% of the total variation, R2 = 0.71). Quantification of the genes used as proxies for N fixation, nitrification and denitrification revealed clear successional signatures that corroborated the taxonomic assignments obtained by metagenomics. Notably, we found strong evidence for niche partitioning, as revealed by the abundance and distribution of marker genes for nitrification (ammonia-oxidizing bacteria and archaea) and denitrification (nitrite reductase nirK, nirS and nitrous oxide reductase nosZ clades I and II). This was supported by a distinct correlation between these genes and soil physico-chemical properties, such as soil physical structure, pH, salinity, organic matter, total N, NO3−, NH4+ and SO42−, across four seasonal samplings. Overall, this study sheds light on the successional trajectories of microbial N cycle genes along a naturally developing salt marsh ecosystem. The data obtained serve as a foundation to guide the formulation of ecological models that aim to effectively monitor and manage pristine

  20. Microbial fuel cell treatment of fuel process wastewater

    DOEpatents

    Borole, Abhijeet P; Tsouris, Constantino

    2013-12-03

    The present invention is directed to a method for cleansing fuel processing effluent containing carbonaceous compounds and inorganic salts, the method comprising contacting the fuel processing effluent with an anode of a microbial fuel ell, the anode containing microbes thereon which oxidatively degrade one or more of the carbonaceous compounds while producing electrical energy from the oxidative degradation, and directing the produced electrical energy to drive an electrosorption mechanism that operates to reduce the concentration of one or more inorganic salts in the fuel processing effluent, wherein the anode is in electrical communication with a cathode of the microbial fuel cell. The invention is also directed to an apparatus for practicing the method.

  1. The shift of microbial communities and their roles in sulfur and iron cycling in a copper ore bioleaching system.

    PubMed

    Niu, Jiaojiao; Deng, Jie; Xiao, Yunhua; He, Zhili; Zhang, Xian; Van Nostrand, J D; Liang, Yili; Deng, Ye; Liu, Xueduan; Yin, Huaqun

    2016-10-04

    Bioleaching has been employed commercially to recover metals from low grade ores, but the production efficiency remains to be improved due to limited understanding of the system. This study examined the shift of microbial communities and S&Fe cycling in three subsystems within a copper ore bioleaching system: leaching heap (LH), leaching solution (LS) and sediment under LS. Results showed that both LH and LS had higher relative abundance of S and Fe oxidizing bacteria, while S and Fe reducing bacteria were more abundant in the Sediment. GeoChip analysis showed a stronger functional potential for S(0) oxidation in LH microbial communities. These findings were consistent with measured oxidation activities to S(0) and Fe(2+), which were highest by microbial communities from LH, lower by those from LS and lowest form Sediment. Moreover, phylogenetic molecular ecological network analysis indicated that these differences might be related to interactions among microbial taxa. Last but not the least, a conceptual model was proposed, linking the S&Fe cycling with responsible microbial populations in the bioleaching systems. Collectively, this study revealed the microbial community and functional structures in all three subsystems of the copper ore, and advanced a holistic understanding of the whole bioleaching system.

  2. The shift of microbial communities and their roles in sulfur and iron cycling in a copper ore bioleaching system

    PubMed Central

    Niu, Jiaojiao; Deng, Jie; Xiao, Yunhua; He, Zhili; Zhang, Xian; Van Nostrand, J. D.; Liang, Yili; Deng, Ye; Liu, Xueduan; Yin, Huaqun

    2016-01-01

    Bioleaching has been employed commercially to recover metals from low grade ores, but the production efficiency remains to be improved due to limited understanding of the system. This study examined the shift of microbial communities and S&Fe cycling in three subsystems within a copper ore bioleaching system: leaching heap (LH), leaching solution (LS) and sediment under LS. Results showed that both LH and LS had higher relative abundance of S and Fe oxidizing bacteria, while S and Fe reducing bacteria were more abundant in the Sediment. GeoChip analysis showed a stronger functional potential for S0 oxidation in LH microbial communities. These findings were consistent with measured oxidation activities to S0 and Fe2+, which were highest by microbial communities from LH, lower by those from LS and lowest form Sediment. Moreover, phylogenetic molecular ecological network analysis indicated that these differences might be related to interactions among microbial taxa. Last but not the least, a conceptual model was proposed, linking the S&Fe cycling with responsible microbial populations in the bioleaching systems. Collectively, this study revealed the microbial community and functional structures in all three subsystems of the copper ore, and advanced a holistic understanding of the whole bioleaching system. PMID:27698381

  3. The shift of microbial communities and their roles in sulfur and iron cycling in a copper ore bioleaching system

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Niu, Jiaojiao; Deng, Jie; Xiao, Yunhua; He, Zhili; Zhang, Xian; van Nostrand, J. D.; Liang, Yili; Deng, Ye; Liu, Xueduan; Yin, Huaqun

    2016-10-01

    Bioleaching has been employed commercially to recover metals from low grade ores, but the production efficiency remains to be improved due to limited understanding of the system. This study examined the shift of microbial communities and S&Fe cycling in three subsystems within a copper ore bioleaching system: leaching heap (LH), leaching solution (LS) and sediment under LS. Results showed that both LH and LS had higher relative abundance of S and Fe oxidizing bacteria, while S and Fe reducing bacteria were more abundant in the Sediment. GeoChip analysis showed a stronger functional potential for S0 oxidation in LH microbial communities. These findings were consistent with measured oxidation activities to S0 and Fe2+, which were highest by microbial communities from LH, lower by those from LS and lowest form Sediment. Moreover, phylogenetic molecular ecological network analysis indicated that these differences might be related to interactions among microbial taxa. Last but not the least, a conceptual model was proposed, linking the S&Fe cycling with responsible microbial populations in the bioleaching systems. Collectively, this study revealed the microbial community and functional structures in all three subsystems of the copper ore, and advanced a holistic understanding of the whole bioleaching system.

  4. Microbial Fuel Cell Transformation of Recalcitrant Organic Compounds in Support of Biosensor Research

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2014-03-27

    Microbial Fuel Cell Transformation of Recalcitrant Organic Compounds in Support of Biosensor ...in the United States. AFIT-ENV-14-M-62 Microbial Fuel Cell Transformation of Recalcitrant Organic Compounds in Support of Biosensor Research...DISTRIBUTION UNLIMITED AFIT-ENV-14-M-62 Microbial Fuel Cell Transformation of Recalcitrant Organic Compounds in Support of Biosensor Research Marc

  5. T Cell Receptor-induced Activation and Apoptosis In Cycling Human T Cells Occur throughout the Cell Cycle

    PubMed Central

    Karas, Michael; Zaks, Tal Z.; JL, Liu; LeRoith, Derek

    1999-01-01

    Previous studies have found conflicting associations between susceptibility to activation-induced cell death and the cell cycle in T cells. However, most of the studies used potentially toxic pharmacological agents for cell cycle synchronization. A panel of human melanoma tumor-reactive T cell lines, a CD8+ HER-2/neu-reactive T cell clone, and the leukemic T cell line Jurkat were separated by centrifugal elutriation. Fractions enriched for the G0–G1, S, and G2–M phases of the cell cycle were assayed for T cell receptor-mediated activation as measured by intracellular Ca2+ flux, cytolytic recognition of tumor targets, and induction of Fas ligand mRNA. Susceptibility to apoptosis induced by recombinant Fas ligand and activation-induced cell death were also studied. None of the parameters studied was specific to a certain phase of the cell cycle, leading us to conclude that in nontransformed human T cells, both activation and apoptosis through T cell receptor activation can occur in all phases of the cell cycle. PMID:10588669

  6. Subsurface Nitrogen-Cycling Microbial Communities at Uranium Contaminated Sites in the Colorado River Basin

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cardarelli, E.; Bargar, J.; Williams, K. H.; Dam, W. L.; Francis, C.

    2015-12-01

    Throughout the Colorado River Basin (CRB), uranium (U) persists as a relic contaminant of former ore processing activities. Elevated solid-phase U levels exist in fine-grained, naturally-reduced zone (NRZ) sediments intermittently found within the subsurface floodplain alluvium of the following Department of Energy-Legacy Management sites: Rifle, CO; Naturita, CO; and Grand Junction, CO. Coupled with groundwater fluctuations that alter the subsurface redox conditions, previous evidence from Rifle, CO suggests this resupply of U may be controlled by microbially-produced nitrite and nitrate. Nitrification, the two-step process of archaeal and bacterial ammonia-oxidation followed by bacterial nitrite oxidation, generates nitrate under oxic conditions. Our hypothesis is that when elevated groundwater levels recede and the subsurface system becomes anoxic, the nitrate diffuses into the reduced interiors of the NRZ and stimulates denitrification, the stepwise anaerobic reduction of nitrate/nitrite to dinitrogen gas. Denitrification may then be coupled to the oxidation of sediment-bound U(IV) forming mobile U(VI), allowing it to resupply U into local groundwater supplies. A key step in substantiating this hypothesis is to demonstrate the presence of nitrogen-cycling organisms in U-contaminated, NRZ sediments from the upper CRB. Here we investigate how the diversity and abundances of nitrifying and denitrifying microbial populations change throughout the NRZs of the subsurface by using functional gene markers for ammonia-oxidation (amoA, encoding the α-subunit of ammonia monooxygenase) and denitrification (nirK, nirS, encoding nitrite reductase). Microbial diversity has been assessed via clone libraries, while abundances have been determined through quantitative polymerase chain reaction (qPCR), elucidating how relative numbers of nitrifiers (amoA) and denitrifiers (nirK, nirS) vary with depth, vary with location, and relate to uranium release within NRZs in sediment

  7. The cell-cycle state of stem cells determines cell fate propensity.

    PubMed

    Pauklin, Siim; Vallier, Ludovic

    2013-09-26

    Self-renewal and differentiation of stem cells are fundamentally associated with cell-cycle progression to enable tissue specification, organ homeostasis, and potentially tumorigenesis. However, technical challenges have impaired the study of the molecular interactions coordinating cell fate choice and cell-cycle progression. Here, we bypass these limitations by using the FUCCI reporter system in human pluripotent stem cells and show that their capacity of differentiation varies during the progression of their cell cycle. These mechanisms are governed by the cell-cycle regulators cyclin D1-3 that control differentiation signals such as the TGF-β-Smad2/3 pathway. Conversely, cell-cycle manipulation using a small molecule directs differentiation of hPSCs and provides an approach to generate cell types with a clinical interest. Our results demonstrate that cell fate decisions are tightly associated with the cell-cycle machinery and reveal insights in the mechanisms synchronizing differentiation and proliferation in developing tissues.

  8. Fungal Cell Cycle: A Unicellular versus Multicellular Comparison.

    PubMed

    Dörter, Ilkay; Momany, Michelle

    2016-12-01

    All cells must accurately replicate DNA and partition it to daughter cells. The basic cell cycle machinery is highly conserved among eukaryotes. Most of the mechanisms that control the cell cycle were worked out in fungal cells, taking advantage of their powerful genetics and rapid duplication times. Here we describe the cell cycles of the unicellular budding yeast Saccharomyces cerevisiae and the multicellular filamentous fungus Aspergillus nidulans. We compare and contrast morphological landmarks of G1, S, G2, and M phases, molecular mechanisms that drive cell cycle progression, and checkpoints in these model unicellular and multicellular fungal systems.

  9. [Microbial fuel cells as an alternative power supply].

    PubMed

    Il'in, V K; Smirnov, I A; Soldatov, P É; Korshunov, D V; Tiurin-Kuz'min, A Iu; Starkova, L V; Chumakov, P E; Emel'ianova, L K; Novikova, L M; Debabov, V G; Voeĭkova, T A

    2012-01-01

    Purpose of the work was designing and prototyping of microbial fuel cells (MFC) and comparative evaluation of the electrogenic activity of wastewater autochthonous microorganisms as well as bacterial monocultures. Objects were model electrogenic strain Shewanella oneidensis MR-1, and an Ochrobactrum sp. strain isolated from the active anode biofilm of MFC composed as an electricity generating system. The study employed the methods typically used for aerobic and anaerobic strains, current measurement, identification of new electrogenic strains in microbial association of wastewater sludge and species definition by rRNA 16-S. As a result, two MFCs prototypes were tried out. Besides, it was shown that electrogenic activity of S. oneidensis MR-1 and Ochrobactrum sp. monocultures is similar but differs from that of the microbial association of the anode biofilm.

  10. Alteration of cell cycle progression by Sindbis virus infection

    SciTech Connect

    Yi, Ruirong; Saito, Kengo; Isegawa, Naohisa; Shirasawa, Hiroshi

    2015-07-10

    We examined the impact of Sindbis virus (SINV) infection on cell cycle progression in a cancer cell line, HeLa, and a non-cancerous cell line, Vero. Cell cycle analyses showed that SINV infection is able to alter the cell cycle progression in both HeLa and Vero cells, but differently, especially during the early stage of infection. SINV infection affected the expression of several cell cycle regulators (CDK4, CDK6, cyclin E, p21, cyclin A and cyclin B) in HeLa cells and caused HeLa cells to accumulate in S phase during the early stage of infection. Monitoring SINV replication in HeLa and Vero cells expressing cell cycle indicators revealed that SINV which infected HeLa cells during G{sub 1} phase preferred to proliferate during S/G{sub 2} phase, and the average time interval for viral replication was significantly shorter in both HeLa and Vero cells infected during G{sub 1} phase than in cells infected during S/G{sub 2} phase. - Highlights: • SINV infection was able to alter the cell cycle progression of infected cancer cells. • SINV infection can affect the expression of cell cycle regulators. • SINV infection exhibited a preference for the timing of viral replication among the cell cycle phases.

  11. Identifying the microbial communities and operational conditions for optimized wastewater treatment in microbial fuel cells.

    PubMed

    Ishii, Shun'ichi; Suzuki, Shino; Norden-Krichmar, Trina M; Wu, Angela; Yamanaka, Yuko; Nealson, Kenneth H; Bretschger, Orianna

    2013-12-01

    Microbial fuel cells (MFCs) are devices that exploit microorganisms as "biocatalysts" to recover energy from organic matter in the form of electricity. MFCs have been explored as possible energy neutral wastewater treatment systems; however, fundamental knowledge is still required about how MFC-associated microbial communities are affected by different operational conditions and can be optimized for accelerated wastewater treatment rates. In this study, we explored how electricity-generating microbial biofilms were established at MFC anodes and responded to three different operational conditions during wastewater treatment: 1) MFC operation using a 750 Ω external resistor (0.3 mA current production); 2) set-potential (SP) operation with the anode electrode potentiostatically controlled to +100 mV vs SHE (4.0 mA current production); and 3) open circuit (OC) operation (zero current generation). For all reactors, primary clarifier effluent collected from a municipal wastewater plant was used as the sole carbon and microbial source. Batch operation demonstrated nearly complete organic matter consumption after a residence time of 8-12 days for the MFC condition, 4-6 days for the SP condition, and 15-20 days for the OC condition. These results indicate that higher current generation accelerates organic matter degradation during MFC wastewater treatment. The microbial community analysis was conducted for the three reactors using 16S rRNA gene sequencing. Although the inoculated wastewater was dominated by members of Epsilonproteobacteria, Gammaproteobacteria, and Bacteroidetes species, the electricity-generating biofilms in MFC and SP reactors were dominated by Deltaproteobacteria and Bacteroidetes. Within Deltaproteobacteria, phylotypes classified to family Desulfobulbaceae and Geobacteraceae increased significantly under the SP condition with higher current generation; however those phylotypes were not found in the OC reactor. These analyses suggest that species

  12. [Microbial processes of the carbon and sulfur cycles in the Chukchi Sea].

    PubMed

    Savvichev, A S; Rusanov, I I; Pimenov, N V; Zakharova, E E; Veslopolova, E F; Lein, A Iu; Crane, K; Ivanov, M V

    2007-01-01

    The research performed in August 2004 within the framework of the Russian-American Long-term Census of the Arctic (RUSALCA) resulted in the first data concerning the rates of the key microbial processes in the water column and bottom sediments of the Bering strait and the Chukchi Sea. The total bacterial counts in the water column varied from 30 x 10(3) cells ml(-1) in the northern and eastern parts to 245 x 10(3) cells ml(-1) in the southern part. The methane content in the water column of the Chukchi sea varied from 8 nmol CH4 l(-1) in the eastern part of the sea to 31 nmol CH4 l(-1) in the northern part of the Herald Canyon. Active microbial processes occurred in the upper 0-3 cm of the bottom sediments; the methane formation rate varied from 0.25 to 16 nmol CH4 dm(-3) day(-1). The rates of methane oxidation varied from 1.61 to 14.7 nmol CH4 dm(-3) day(-1). The rates of sulfate reduction varied from 1.35 to 16.2 micromol SO4(2-) dm(-3) day(-1). The rate of methane formation in the sediments increased with depth, while sulfate reduction rates decreased (less than 1 micromol SO4(2-) dm(-3) day(-1)). These high concentrations of biogenic elements and high rates of microbial processes in the upper sediment layers suggest a specific type of trophic chain in the Chukchi Sea. The approximate calculated balance of methane emission from the water column into the atmosphere is from 5.4 to 57.3 micromol CH4 m(-2) day(-1).

  13. Metabolism, cell growth and the bacterial cell cycle

    PubMed Central

    Wang, Jue D.; Levin, Petra A.

    2010-01-01

    Adaptation to fluctuations in nutrient availability is a fact of life for single-celled organisms in the ‘wild’. A decade ago our understanding of how bacteria adjust cell cycle parameters to accommodate changes in nutrient availability stemmed almost entirely from elegant physiological studies completed in the 1960s. In this Opinion article we summarize recent groundbreaking work in this area and discuss potential mechanisms by which nutrient availability and metabolic status are coordinated with cell growth, chromosome replication and cell division. PMID:19806155

  14. Quantifying Rates of Complete Microbial Iron Redox Cycling in Acidic Hot Springs

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    St Clair, B.; Pottenger, J. W.; Shock, E.

    2013-12-01

    concentrations of ferrous iron. Experimental design allowed us to measure biological and abiological rates independently. Results indicate a relatively consistent rate of biological iron oxidation between 20-100 ng Fe2+(gm wet sediment)-1 (second)-1 where oxide accumulations occur. Abiological oxidation rates increase significantly with increasing pH, and greatly limit soluble ferrous iron above a pH of 3.5 at high temperatures. Rates of biological iron reduction are typically comparable to oxidation, and can often double oxidation rates when supplemented with organic carbon. Abiological iron reduction rates are inconsequential when the pH is greater than 2, but increase sharply below this point. Results indicate that comparable rates of microbial oxidation and reduction are common in springs where biogenic iron oxide accumulates. It appears that the interplay of temperature, oxygen availability, and supply of organic carbon determines the extent and history of iron oxide accumulation. Taken together, our results show that complete microbial iron redox cycles are active in acidic hot springs wherever biogenic iron oxides accumulate.

  15. Interactions between microbial iron reduction and metal geochemistry: effect of redox cycling on transition metal speciation in iron bearing sediments.

    PubMed

    Cooper, D Craig; Picardal, Flynn F; Coby, Aaron J

    2006-03-15

    Microbial iron reduction is an important biogeochemical process that can affect metal geochemistry in sediments through direct and indirect mechanisms. With respectto Fe(III) (hydr)oxides bearing sorbed divalent metals, recent reports have indicated that (1) microbial reduction of goethite/ferrihydrite mixtures preferentially removes ferrihydrite, (2) this process can incorporate previously sorbed Zn(II) into an authigenic crystalline phase that is insoluble in 0.5 M HCl, (3) this new phase is probably goethite, and (4) the presence of nonreducible minerals can inhibit this transformation. This study demonstrates that a range of sorbed transition metals can be selectively sequestered into a 0.5 M HCl insoluble phase and that the process can be stimulated through sequential steps of microbial iron reduction and air oxidation. Microbial reduction experiments with divalent Cd, Co, Mn, Ni, Pb, and Zn indicate that all metals save Mn experienced some sequestration, with the degree of metal incorporation into the 0.5 M HCl insoluble phase correlating positively with crystalline ionic radius at coordination number = 6. Redox cycling experiments with Zn adsorbed to synthetic goethite/ferrihydrite or iron-bearing natural sediments indicate that redox cycling from iron reducing to iron oxidizing conditions sequesters more Zn within authigenic minerals than microbial iron reduction alone. In addition, the process is more effective in goethite/ferrihydrite mixtures than in iron-bearing natural sediments. Microbial reduction alone resulted in a -3x increase in 0.5 M HCl insoluble Zn and increased aqueous Zn (Zn-aq) in goethite/ferrihydrite, but did not significantly affect Zn speciation in natural sediments. Redox cycling enhanced the Zn sequestration by approximately 12% in both goethite/ferrihydrite and natural sediments and reduced Zn-aq to levels equal to the uninoculated control in goethite/ferrihydrite and less than the uninoculated control in natural sediments. These

  16. Microbial evidence for sulfur cycling in the deep subsurface of the Witwatersrand Basin, South Africa

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Morgan, L. E.; Gihring, T. M.; Moser, D. P.; Dollhopf, M.; Balkwill, D. L.; Davidson, M. M.; Onstott, T. C.; Pfiffner, S. M.; Macalady, J. L.

    2004-05-01

    The continental deep subsurface harbors a heterogeneous community of microorganisms that have yet to be well understood. The gold mines of the Witwatersrand Basin in South Africa provide relatively easy access to this environment and have been integral to recent attempts to characterize subsurface microbiology. Molecular evidence for the biogeochemical cycling of sulfur has been detected in fissure water from Merriespruit and Driefontein mines. PCR amplification, cloning, and sequencing of adenosine-5'-phosphosulfate reductase (APS) and 16S rRNA genes were used to assess the composition of sulfur metabolizing microbial populations. Sequences closely related to APS reductase genes of the sulfur-oxidizing bacterium Allochromatium vinosum were detected in the Merriespruit Mine sample. APS reductase gene libraries from the Driefontein Mine sample were dominated by sequences with high identity to known sulfate-reducing bacteria. Phylogenetic analyses of 16S rRNA sequences indicated the presence of Thiobacillus-related species (known S-oxidizing organisms) in the Merriespruit sample, while Driefontein 16S rRNA clone libraries were dominated by sequences with high identity to known sulfate-reducing organisms in the delta-Proteobacteria and Firmicutes lineages. This study provides some of the first environmental APS sequences from sulfur-oxidizing bacteria and sheds new light on the organisms participating in sulfur-cycling in the deep subsurface.

  17. Capacity fade of Sony 18650 cells cycled at elevated temperatures. Part I. Cycling performance

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ramadass, P.; Haran, Bala; White, Ralph; Popov, Branko N.

    The capacity fade of Sony 18650 Li-ion cells increases with increase in temperature. After 800 cycles, the cells cycled at RT and 45 °C showed a capacity fade of 30 and 36%, respectively. The cell cycled at 55 °C showed a capacity loss of about 70% after 490 cycles. The rate capability of the cells continues to decrease with cycling. Impedance measurements showed an overall increase in the cell resistance with cycling and temperature. Impedance studies of the electrode materials showed an increased positive electrode resistance when compared to that of the negative electrode for cells cycled at RT and 45 °C. However, cells cycled at 50 and 55 °C exhibit higher negative electrode resistance. The increased capacity fade for the cells cycled at high temperatures can be explained by taking into account the repeated film formation over the surface of anode, which results in increased rate of lithium loss and also in a drastic increase in the negative electrode resistance with cycling.

  18. Microbial community structure accompanied with electricity production in a constructed wetland plant microbial fuel cell.

    PubMed

    Lu, Lu; Xing, Defeng; Ren, Zhiyong Jason

    2015-11-01

    This study reveals the complex structure of bacterial and archaeal communities associated with a Canna indica plant microbial fuel cell (PMFC) and its electricity production. The PMFC produced a maximum current of 105 mA/m(2) by utilizing rhizodeposits as the sole electron donor without any external nutrient or buffer supplements, which demonstrates the feasibility of PMFCs in practical oligotrophic conditions with low solution conductivity. The microbial diversity was significantly higher in the PMFC than non-plant controls or sediment-only controls, and pyrosequencing and clone library reveal that rhizodeposits conversion to current were carried out by syntrophic interactions between fermentative bacteria (e.g., Anaerolineaceae) and electrochemically active bacteria (e.g., Geobacter). Denitrifying bacteria and acetotrophic methanogens play a minor role in organics degradation, but abundant hydrogenotrophic methanogens and thermophilic archaea are likely main electron donor competitors.

  19. Electricity generation from food wastes and microbial community structure in microbial fuel cells.

    PubMed

    Jia, Jianna; Tang, Yu; Liu, Bingfeng; Wu, Di; Ren, Nanqi; Xing, Defeng

    2013-09-01

    Microbial fuel cell (MFC) was studied as an alternate and a novel way to dispose food wastes (FWs) in a waste-to-energy form. Different organic loading rate obviously affected the performance of MFCs fed with FWs. The maximum power density of ~18 W/m(3) (~556 mW/m(2)) was obtained at COD of 3200±400 mg/L and the maximum coulombic efficiency (CE) was ~27.0% at COD of 4900±350 mg/L. The maximum removals of COD, total carbohydrate (TC) and total nitrogen (TN) were ~86.4%, ~95.9% and ~16.1%, respectively. Microbial community analysis using 454 pyrosequencing of 16S rRNA gene demonstrated the combination of the dominant genera of the exoelectrogenic Geobacter and fermentative Bacteroides effectively drove highly efficient and reliable MFC systems with functions of organic matters degradation and electricity generation.

  20. Microbial fuel cell (MFC) for bioelectricity generation from organic wastes.

    PubMed

    Moqsud, M Azizul; Omine, Kiyoshi; Yasufuku, Noriyuki; Hyodo, Masayuki; Nakata, Yukio

    2013-11-01

    Microbial fuel cells (MFCs) have gained a lot of attention recently as a mode of converting organic matter into electricity. In this study, a compost-based microbial fuel cell that generates bioelectricity by biodegradation of organic matter is developed. Grass cuttings, along with leaf mold, rice bran, oil cake (from mustard plants) and chicken droppings (waste from chickens) were used as organic waste. The electric properties of the MFC under anaerobic fermentation condition were investigated along with the influence of different types of membranes, the mixing of fly ash, and different types of electrode materials. It is observed that the maximum voltage was increased by mixing fly ash. Cellophane showed the highest value of voltage (around 350mV). Bamboo charcoal is good for anode material; however carbon fiber is better for the cathode material in terms of optimization of power generated. This developed MFC is a simple cell to generate electricity from organic waste.

  1. Cell cycle dysregulation in pituitary oncogenesis.

    PubMed

    Muşat, Madalina; Vax, Vladimir V; Borboli, Ninetta; Gueorguiev, Maria; Bonner, Sarah; Korbonits, Márta; Grossman, Ashley B

    2004-01-01

    The cell cycle is the process by which cells grow, replicate their genome and divide. The cell cycle control system is a cyclically-operating biochemical device constructed from a set of interacting proteins that induce and coordinate proper progression through the cycle, and includes cyclins, cyclin-dependent kinases (CDK) and their inhibitors (CDKI). There are mainly two families of CDKI, the INK family (INK4a/p16; INK4b/p15; INK4c/p18 and INK4d/p19) and the WAF/KIP family (WAF1/p21; KIP1/p27; KIP2/p57). Progression through the cell cycle is mainly dependent on fluctuations in the concentration of cyclins and CDKI achieved through the programmed degradation of these proteins by proteolysis within the ubiquitin-proteasome system. There is also a transcriptional regulation of cyclin expression, probably dependent on CDK phosphorylation. The p53 family--p53, p63 and p73--function as transcription factors that play a major role in regulating the response of mammalian cells to stressors and damage, in part through the transcriptional activation of genes involved in cell cycle control (e.g. p21), DNA repair, senescence, angiogenesis and apoptosis. Essential for the maintenance of euploidy during mitosis is human securin, identical to the product of the pituitary tumour-transforming gene (PTTG). Loss of regulation at the G1/S transition appears to be a common event among virtually all types of human tumours. Aberrations of one or more components of the pRb/p16/cyclin D1/CDK4 pathway seem to be a frequent event (80%) in pituitary tumours. The role of p27 is rather that of a haploinsufficient gene. p27-/- mice show an increased growth rate, due to increased cellularity, testicular and ovarian cell hyperplasia and infertility, and hyperplasia of the pituitary intermediate lobe with nearly 100% mortality caused by such a benign pituitary tumour. Although the p27 gene was not found to be mutated in human pituitary tumours and its mRNA expression was similar in tumour samples

  2. Analysis of Cell Cycle Switches in Drosophila Oogenesis.

    PubMed

    Jia, Dongyu; Huang, Yi-Chun; Deng, Wu-Min

    2015-01-01

    The study of Drosophila oogenesis provides invaluable information about signaling pathway regulation and cell cycle programming. During Drosophila oogenesis, a string of egg chambers in each ovariole progressively develops toward maturity. Egg chamber development consists of 14 stages. From stage 1 to stage 6 (mitotic cycle), main-body follicle cells undergo mitotic divisions. From stage 7 to stage 10a (endocycle), follicle cells cease mitosis but continue three rounds of endoreduplication. From stage 10b to stage 13 (gene amplification), instead of whole genome duplication, follicle cells selectively amplify specific genomic regions, mostly for chorion production. So far, Drosophila oogenesis is one of the most well studied model systems used to understand cell cycle switches, which furthers our knowledge about cell cycle control machinery and sheds new light on potential cancer treatments. Here, we give a brief summary of cell cycle switches, the associated signaling pathways and factors, and the detailed experimental procedures used to study the cell cycle switches.

  3. Phylogenetic and Metagenomic Analyses of Substrate-Dependent Bacterial Temporal Dynamics in Microbial Fuel Cells

    PubMed Central

    Zhang, Husen; Chen, Xi; Braithwaite, Daniel; He, Zhen

    2014-01-01

    Understanding the microbial community structure and genetic potential of anode biofilms is key to improve extracellular electron transfers in microbial fuel cells. We investigated effect of substrate and temporal dynamics of anodic biofilm communities using phylogenetic and metagenomic approaches in parallel with electrochemical characterizations. The startup non-steady state anodic bacterial structures were compared for a simple substrate, acetate, and for a complex substrate, landfill leachate, using a single-chamber air-cathode microbial fuel cell. Principal coordinate analysis showed that distinct community structures were formed with each substrate type. The bacterial diversity measured as Shannon index decreased with time in acetate cycles, and was restored with the introduction of leachate. The change of diversity was accompanied by an opposite trend in the relative abundance of Geobacter-affiliated phylotypes, which were acclimated to over 40% of total Bacteria at the end of acetate-fed conditions then declined in the leachate cycles. The transition from acetate to leachate caused a decrease in output power density from 243±13 mW/m2 to 140±11 mW/m2, accompanied by a decrease in Coulombic electron recovery from 18±3% to 9±3%. The leachate cycles selected protein-degrading phylotypes within phylum Synergistetes. Metagenomic shotgun sequencing showed that leachate-fed communities had higher cell motility genes including bacterial chemotaxis and flagellar assembly, and increased gene abundance related to metal resistance, antibiotic resistance, and quorum sensing. These differentially represented genes suggested an altered anodic biofilm community in response to additional substrates and stress from the complex landfill leachate. PMID:25202990

  4. The role of FeS(aq) molecular clusters in microbial redox cycling and iron mineralization.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Druschel, G.; Oduro, H.; Sperling, J.; Johnson, C.

    2008-12-01

    Iron sulfide molecular clusters, FeS(aq), are a group of polynuclear Fe-S complexes varying in size between a few and a few hundred molecules that occur in many environments and are critical parts of cycling between soluble iron and iron sulfide minerals. These clusters react uniquely with voltammetric Au-amalgam electrodes, and the signal for these molecules has now been observed in many terrestrial and marine aquatic settings. FeS(aq) clusters form when aqueous sulfide and iron(II) interact, but the source of those ions can come from abiotic or microbial sulfate and iron reduction or from the abiotic non-oxidative dissolution of iron sulfide minerals. Formation of iron sulfide minerals, principally mackinawite as the first solid nanocrystalline phase in many settings, is necessarily preceeded by formation and evolution of these molecular clusters as mineralization proceeds, and the clusters have been suggested to additionally be part of the pyritization process (Rickard and Luther, 1997; Luther and Rickard, 2005). In several systems, we have also observed FeS(aq) clusters to be the link between Fe-S mineral dissolution and oxidation of iron and sulfide, with important implications for changes to the overall oxidation pathway. Microorganisms can clearly be involved in the formation of FeS(aq) through iron and sulfate reduction, but it is not clear to date if organisms can utilize these clusters either as metabolic components or as anabolic 'building blocks' for enzyme production. Cycling of iron in the Fe-S system linked to FeS(aq) would clearly be a critical part of understanding iron isotope dynamics preserved in iron sulfide minerals. We will review ongoing work towards understanding the role of FeS(aq) in iron cycling and isotope fractionation as well as the measurement and characterization of this key class of iron complexes using environmental voltammetry.

  5. Microbial mechanisms coupling carbon and phosphorus cycles in phosphorus-limited northern Adriatic Sea.

    PubMed

    Malfatti, F; Turk, V; Tinta, T; Mozetič, P; Manganelli, M; Samo, T J; Ugalde, J A; Kovač, N; Stefanelli, M; Antonioli, M; Fonda-Umani, S; Del Negro, P; Cataletto, B; Hozić, A; Ivošević Denardis, N; Zutić, V; Svetličić, V; Mišić Radić, T; Radić, T; Fuks, D; Azam, F

    2014-02-01

    The coastal northern Adriatic Sea receives pulsed inputs of riverine nutrients, causing phytoplankton blooms and seasonally sustained dissolved organic carbon (DOC) accumulation-hypothesized to cause episodes of massive mucilage. The underlying mechanisms regulating P and C cycles and their coupling are unclear. Extensive biogeochemical parameters, processes and community composition were measured in a 64-day mesocosms deployed off Piran, Slovenia. We followed the temporal trends of C and P fluxes in P-enriched (P+) and unenriched (P-) mesocosms. An intense diatom bloom developed then crashed; however, substantial primary production was maintained throughout, supported by tightly coupled P regeneration by bacteria and phytoplankton. Results provide novel insights on post-bloom C and P dynamics and mechanisms. 1) Post-bloom DOC accumulation to 186 μM remained elevated despite high bacterial carbon demand. Presumably, a large part of DOC accumulated due to the bacterial ectohydrolytic processing of primary productivity that adventitiously generated slow-to-degrade DOC; 2) bacteria heavily colonized post-bloom diatom aggregates, rendering them microscale hotspots of P regeneration due to locally intense bacterial ectohydrolase activities; 3) Pi turnover was rapid thus suggesting high P flux through the DOP pool (dissolved organic phosphorus) turnover; 4) Alpha- and Gamma-proteobacteria dominated the bacterial communities despite great differences of C and P pools and fluxes in both mesocosms. However, minor taxa showed dramatic changes in community compositions. Major OTUs were presumably generalists adapted to diverse productivity regimes.We suggest that variation in bacterial ectohydrolase activities on aggregates, regulating the rates of POM→DOM transition as well as dissolved polymer hydrolysis, could become a bottleneck in P regeneration. This could be another regulatory step, in addition to APase, in the microbial regulation of P cycle and the coupling

  6. Deployable Microbial Fuel Cell and Methods

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2011-09-08

    cells and batteries and in particular to cathodes which are suitable for use in galvanic cells that use an oxidant dissolved in the electrolyte as...is preferably dried so the battery is activated when liquid contacts the electrolyte and separator layer. Water swellable particles are included...required divers to install graphite plates in the marine sediment. As noted above, this is a costly and time consuming process. In addition, the graphite

  7. Microbial Fuel Cells for Powering Navy Devices

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2014-01-20

    they can range in scale from less than 1 W to more than 1 MW. They promise relatively high energy density (Wh/L) compared to lithium batteries and...hydrogen/oxygen fuel cells and relatively high specific energy (Wh/kg) compared to lithium batteries by using nonexplosive biomass-derived organic...high energy density (Wh/L) compared to lithium batteries and hydrogen/oxygen fuel cells and relatively high specific energy (Wh/kg) compared to

  8. Dose-dependent regulation of microbial activity on sinking particles by polyunsaturated aldehydes: Implications for the carbon cycle.

    PubMed

    Edwards, Bethanie R; Bidle, Kay D; Van Mooy, Benjamin A S

    2015-05-12

    Diatoms and other phytoplankton play a crucial role in the global carbon cycle, fixing CO2 into organic carbon, which may then be exported to depth via sinking particles. The molecular diversity of this organic carbon is vast and many highly bioactive molecules have been identified. Polyunsaturated aldehydes (PUAs) are bioactive on various levels of the marine food web, and yet the potential for these molecules to affect the fate of organic carbon produced by diatoms remains an open question. In this study, the effects of PUAs on the natural microbial assemblages associated with sinking particles were investigated. Sinking particles were collected from 150 m in the water column and exposed to varying concentrations of PUAs in dark incubations over 24 h. PUA doses ranging from 1 to 10 µM stimulated respiration, organic matter hydrolysis, and cell growth by bacteria associated with sinking particles. PUA dosages near 100 µM appeared to be toxic, resulting in decreased bacterial cell abundance and metabolism, as well as pronounced shifts in bacterial community composition. Sinking particles were hot spots for PUA production that contained concentrations within the stimulatory micromolar range in contrast to previously reported picomolar concentrations of these compounds in bulk seawater. This suggests PUAs produced in situ stimulate the remineralization of phytoplankton-derived sinking organic matter, decreasing carbon export efficiency, and shoaling the average depths of nutrient regeneration. Our results are consistent with a "bioactivity hypothesis" for explaining variations in carbon export efficiency in the oceans.

  9. Dose-dependent regulation of microbial activity on sinking particles by polyunsaturated aldehydes: Implications for the carbon cycle

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Edwards, Bethanie R.; Bidle, Kay D.; Van Mooy, Benjamin A. S.

    2015-05-01

    Diatoms and other phytoplankton play a crucial role in the global carbon cycle, fixing CO2 into organic carbon, which may then be exported to depth via sinking particles. The molecular diversity of this organic carbon is vast and many highly bioactive molecules have been identified. Polyunsaturated aldehydes (PUAs) are bioactive on various levels of the marine food web, and yet the potential for these molecules to affect the fate of organic carbon produced by diatoms remains an open question. In this study, the effects of PUAs on the natural microbial assemblages associated with sinking particles were investigated. Sinking particles were collected from 150 m in the water column and exposed to varying concentrations of PUAs in dark incubations over 24 h. PUA doses ranging from 1 to 10 µM stimulated respiration, organic matter hydrolysis, and cell growth by bacteria associated with sinking particles. PUA dosages near 100 µM appeared to be toxic, resulting in decreased bacterial cell abundance and metabolism, as well as pronounced shifts in bacterial community composition. Sinking particles were hot spots for PUA production that contained concentrations within the stimulatory micromolar range in contrast to previously reported picomolar concentrations of these compounds in bulk seawater. This suggests PUAs produced in situ stimulate the remineralization of phytoplankton-derived sinking organic matter, decreasing carbon export efficiency, and shoaling the average depths of nutrient regeneration. Our results are consistent with a "bioactivity hypothesis" for explaining variations in carbon export efficiency in the oceans.

  10. Dose-dependent regulation of microbial activity on sinking particles by polyunsaturated aldehydes: Implications for the carbon cycle

    PubMed Central

    Edwards, Bethanie R.; Bidle, Kay D.; Van Mooy, Benjamin A. S.

    2015-01-01

    Diatoms and other phytoplankton play a crucial role in the global carbon cycle, fixing CO2 into organic carbon, which may then be exported to depth via sinking particles. The molecular diversity of this organic carbon is vast and many highly bioactive molecules have been identified. Polyunsaturated aldehydes (PUAs) are bioactive on various levels of the marine food web, and yet the potential for these molecules to affect the fate of organic carbon produced by diatoms remains an open question. In this study, the effects of PUAs on the natural microbial assemblages associated with sinking particles were investigated. Sinking particles were collected from 150 m in the water column and exposed to varying concentrations of PUAs in dark incubations over 24 h. PUA doses ranging from 1 to 10 µM stimulated respiration, organic matter hydrolysis, and cell growth by bacteria associated with sinking particles. PUA dosages near 100 µM appeared to be toxic, resulting in decreased bacterial cell abundance and metabolism, as well as pronounced shifts in bacterial community composition. Sinking particles were hot spots for PUA production that contained concentrations within the stimulatory micromolar range in contrast to previously reported picomolar concentrations of these compounds in bulk seawater. This suggests PUAs produced in situ stimulate the remineralization of phytoplankton-derived sinking organic matter, decreasing carbon export efficiency, and shoaling the average depths of nutrient regeneration. Our results are consistent with a “bioactivity hypothesis” for explaining variations in carbon export efficiency in the oceans. PMID:25918397

  11. Classic "broken cell" techniques and newer live cell methods for cell cycle assessment.

    PubMed

    Henderson, Lindsay; Bortone, Dante S; Lim, Curtis; Zambon, Alexander C

    2013-05-15

    Many common, important diseases are either caused or exacerbated by hyperactivation (e.g., cancer) or inactivation (e.g., heart failure) of the cell division cycle. A better understanding of the cell cycle is critical for interpreting numerous types of physiological changes in cells. Moreover, new insights into how to control it will facilitate new therapeutics for a variety of diseases and new avenues in regenerative medicine. The progression of cells through the four main phases of their division cycle [G(0)/G(1), S (DNA synthesis), G(2), and M (mitosis)] is a highly conserved process orchestrated by several pathways (e.g., transcription, phosphorylation, nuclear import/export, and protein ubiquitination) that coordinate a core cell cycle pathway. This core pathway can also receive inputs that are cell type and cell niche dependent. "Broken cell" methods (e.g., use of labeled nucleotide analogs) to assess for cell cycle activity have revealed important insights regarding the cell cycle but lack the ability to assess living cells in real time (longitudinal studies) and with single-cell resolution. Moreover, such methods often require cell synchronization, which can perturb the pathway under study. Live cell cycle sensors can be used at single-cell resolution in living cells, intact tissue, and whole animals. Use of these more recently available sensors has the potential to reveal physiologically relevant insights regarding the normal and perturbed cell division cycle.

  12. Characterization of microbial fuel cells at microbially and electrochemically meaningful time scales.

    PubMed

    Ren, Zhiyong; Yan, Hengjing; Wang, Wei; Mench, Matthew M; Regan, John M

    2011-03-15

    The variable biocatalyst density in a microbial fuel cell (MFC) anode biofilm is a unique feature of MFCs relative to other electrochemical systems, yet performance characterizations of MFCs typically involve analyses at electrochemically relevant time scales that are insufficient to account for these variable biocatalyst effects. This study investigated the electrochemical performance and the development of anode biofilm architecture under different external loadings, with duplicate acetate-fed single-chamber MFCs stabilized at each resistance for microbially relevant time scales. Power density curves from these steady-state reactors generally showed comparable profiles despite the fact that anode biofilm architectures and communities varied considerably, showing that steady-state biofilm differences had little influence on electrochemical performance until the steady-state external loading was much larger than the reactor internal resistance. Filamentous bacteria were dominant on the anodes under high external resistances (1000 and 5000 Ω), while more diverse rod-shaped cells formed dense biofilms under lower resistances (10, 50, and 265 Ω). Anode charge transfer resistance decreased with decreasing fixed external resistances, but was consistently 2 orders of magnitude higher than the resistance at the cathode. Cell counting showed an inverse exponential correlation between cell numbers and external resistances. This direct link of MFC anode biofilm evolution with external resistance and electricity production offers several operational strategies for system optimization.

  13. Local circadian clock gates cell cycle progression of transient amplifying cells during regenerative hair cycling

    PubMed Central

    Plikus, Maksim V.; Vollmers, Christopher; de la Cruz, Damon; Chaix, Amandine; Ramos, Raul; Panda, Satchidananda; Chuong, Cheng-Ming

    2013-01-01

    Regenerative cycling of hair follicles offers an unique opportunity to explore the role of circadian clock in physiological tissue regeneration. We focused on the role of circadian clock in actively proliferating transient amplifying cells, as opposed to quiescent stem cells. We identified two key sites of peripheral circadian clock activity specific to regenerating anagen hair follicles, namely epithelial matrix and mesenchymal dermal papilla. We showed that peripheral circadian clock in epithelial matrix cells generates prominent daily mitotic rhythm. As a consequence of this mitotic rhythmicity, hairs grow faster in the morning than in the evening. Because cells are the most susceptible to DNA damage during mitosis, this cycle leads to a remarkable time-of-day–dependent sensitivity of growing hair follicles to genotoxic stress. Same doses of γ-radiation caused dramatic hair loss in wild-type mice when administered in the morning, during mitotic peak, compared with the evening, when hair loss is minimal. This diurnal radioprotective effect becomes lost in circadian mutants, consistent with asynchronous mitoses in their hair follicles. Clock coordinates cell cycle progression with genotoxic stress responses by synchronizing Cdc2/Cyclin B-mediated G2/M checkpoint. Our results uncover diurnal mitotic gating as the essential protective mechanism in highly proliferative hair follicles and offer strategies for minimizing or maximizing cytotoxicity of radiation therapies. PMID:23690597

  14. Carbon and nitrogen assimilation in deep subseafloor microbial cells.

    PubMed

    Morono, Yuki; Terada, Takeshi; Nishizawa, Manabu; Ito, Motoo; Hillion, François; Takahata, Naoto; Sano, Yuji; Inagaki, Fumio

    2011-11-08

    Remarkable numbers of microbial cells have been observed in global shallow to deep subseafloor sediments. Accumulating evidence indicates that deep and ancient sediments harbor living microbial life, where the flux of nutrients and energy are extremely low. However, their physiology and energy requirements remain largely unknown. We used stable isotope tracer incubation and nanometer-scale secondary ion MS to investigate the dynamics of carbon and nitrogen assimilation activities in individual microbial cells from 219-m-deep lower Pleistocene (460,000 y old) sediments from the northwestern Pacific off the Shimokita Peninsula of Japan. Sediment samples were incubated in vitro with (13)C- and/or (15)N-labeled glucose, pyruvate, acetate, bicarbonate, methane, ammonium, and amino acids. Significant incorporation of (13)C and/or (15)N and growth occurred in response to glucose, pyruvate, and amino acids (∼76% of total cells), whereas acetate and bicarbonate were incorporated without fostering growth. Among those substrates, a maximum substrate assimilation rate was observed at 67 × 10(-18) mol/cell per d with bicarbonate. Neither carbon assimilation nor growth was evident in response to methane. The atomic ratios between nitrogen incorporated from ammonium and the total cellular nitrogen consistently exceeded the ratios of carbon, suggesting that subseafloor microbes preferentially require nitrogen assimilation for the recovery in vitro. Our results showed that the most deeply buried subseafloor sedimentary microbes maintain potentials for metabolic activities and that growth is generally limited by energy but not by the availability of C and N compounds.

  15. The Cell Cycle Switch Computes Approximate Majority

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cardelli, Luca; Csikász-Nagy, Attila

    2012-09-01

    Both computational and biological systems have to make decisions about switching from one state to another. The `Approximate Majority' computational algorithm provides the asymptotically fastest way to reach a common decision by all members of a population between two possible outcomes, where the decision approximately matches the initial relative majority. The network that regulates the mitotic entry of the cell-cycle in eukaryotes also makes a decision before it induces early mitotic processes. Here we show that the switch from inactive to active forms of the mitosis promoting Cyclin Dependent Kinases is driven by a system that is related to both the structure and the dynamics of the Approximate Majority computation. We investigate the behavior of these two switches by deterministic, stochastic and probabilistic methods and show that the steady states and temporal dynamics of the two systems are similar and they are exchangeable as components of oscillatory networks.

  16. A deregulated intestinal cell cycle program disrupts tissue homeostasis without affecting longevity in Drosophila.

    PubMed

    Petkau, Kristina; Parsons, Brendon D; Duggal, Aashna; Foley, Edan

    2014-10-10

    Recent studies illuminate a complex relationship between the control of stem cell division and intestinal tissue organization in the model system Drosophila melanogaster. Host and microbial signals drive intestinal proliferation to maintain an effective epithelial barrier. Although it is widely assumed that proliferation induces dysplasia and shortens the life span of the host, the phenotypic consequences of deregulated intestinal proliferation for an otherwise healthy host remain unexplored. To address this question, we genetically isolated and manipulated the cell cycle programs of adult stem cells and enterocytes. Our studies revealed that cell cycle alterations led to extensive cell death and morphological disruptions. Despite the extensive tissue damage, we did not observe an impact on longevity, suggesting a remarkable degree of plasticity in intestinal function.

  17. S and O Isotope Studies of Microbial S Cycling in the Deep Biosphere of Marine Sediments: Eastern Equatorial Pacific Ocean

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Blake, R. E.; Bottcher, M. E.; Surkov, A. V.; Ferdelman, T. G.; Jorgensen, B. B.

    2004-12-01

    We have determined the oxygen (18O/16O) and sulfur (34S/32S) isotope ratios of porewater sulfate to depths of over 400 mbsf in sediments from open-ocean and upwelling sites in the Eastern Equatorial Pacific ocean. Sulfate δ 18O ranges from near-normal seawater values (9.5 permil) at organic-poor open-ocean sites, to approximately 30 permil at sites with higher organic matter content and higher associated microbial activity. Depth-correlative trends of δ 18O, δ 34S, alkalinity, methane, ammonium and the presence of sulfide, indicate significant oxidation of sedimentary organic matter by sulfate-reducing microbial populations as well as anaerobic oxidation of methane. δ 18O-SO4 values at low-activity sites reveal the presence of significant microbial sulfur-cycling activity despite relatively flat sulfate concentration and δ 34S profiles. This activity may include contributions from several processes including: enzyme-catalyzed equilibration between oxygen in sulfate and water superimposed upon microbial sulfate reduction, sulfide oxidation, and bacterial disproportionation of sulfur intermediates. Large isotope enrichment factors observed at low-activity sites (40-80 permil) likely reflect concurrent processes of: kinetic isotope fractionation, equilibrium fractionation between sulfate and water, and sulfide oxidation at low rates of sulfate reduction. Results of this study indicate that coupled measurements of S and O isotope ratios of porewater sulfate are a powerful tool for tracing microbial activity and sulfur cycling in marine sediments.

  18. Ohmic resistance affects microbial community and electrochemical kinetics in a multi-anode microbial electrochemical cell

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dhar, Bipro Ranjan; Ryu, Hodon; Santo Domingo, Jorge W.; Lee, Hyung-Sool

    2016-11-01

    Multi-anode microbial electrochemical cells (MxCs) are considered as one of the most promising configurations for scale-up of MxCs, but understanding of anode kinetics in multiple anodes is limited in the MxCs. In this study we assessed microbial community and electrochemical kinetic parameters for biofilms on individual anodes in a multi-anode MxC to better comprehend anode fundamentals. Microbial community analysis targeting 16S rRNA Illumina sequencing showed that Geobacter genus was abundant (87%) only on the biofilm anode closest to a reference electrode (low ohmic energy loss) in which current density was the highest among three anodes. In comparison, Geobacter populations were less than 1% for biofilms on other two anodes distant from the reference electrode (high ohmic energy loss), generating small current density. Half-saturation anode potential (EKA) was the lowest at -0.251 to -0.242 V (vs. standard hydrogen electrode) for the closest biofilm anode to the reference electrode, while EKA was as high as -0.134 V for the farthest anode. Our study proves that electric potential of individual anodes changed by ohmic energy loss shifts biofilm communities on individual anodes and consequently influences electron transfer kinetics on each anode in the multi-anode MxC.

  19. Enhanced microbial reduction of vanadium (V) in groundwater with bioelectricity from microbial fuel cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hao, Liting; Zhang, Baogang; Tian, Caixing; Liu, Ye; Shi, Chunhong; Cheng, Ming; Feng, Chuanping

    2015-08-01

    Bioelectricity generated from the microbial fuel cell (MFC) is applied to the bioelectrical reactor (BER) directly to enhance microbial reduction of vanadium (V) (V(V)) in groundwater. With the maximum power density of 543.4 mW m-2 from the MFC, V(V) removal is accelerated with efficiency of 93.6% during 12 h operation. Higher applied voltage can facilitate this process. V(V) removals decrease with the increase of initial V(V) concentration, while extra addition of chemical oxygen demand (COD) has little effect on performance improvement. Microbial V(V) reduction is enhanced and then suppressed with the increase of conductivity. High-throughput 16S rRNA gene pyrosequencing analysis implies the accumulated Enterobacter and Lactococcus reduce V(V) with products from fermentative microorganisms such as Macellibacteroides. The presentation of electrochemically active bacteria as Enterobacter promotes electron transfers. This study indicates that application of bioelectricity from MFCs is a promising strategy to improve the efficiency of in-situ bioremediation of V(V) polluted groundwater.

  20. Effect of electricity on microbial community of microbial fuel cell simultaneously treating sulfide and nitrate

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cai, Jing; Zheng, Ping; Xing, Yajuan; Qaisar, Mahmood

    2015-05-01

    The effect of electric current on microbial community is explored in Microbial Fuel Cells (MFCs) simultaneously treating sulfide and nitrate. The MFCs are operated under four different conditions which exhibited different characteristics of electricity generation. In batch mode, MFCs generate intermittently high current pulses in the beginning, and the current density is instable subsequently, while the current density of MFCs in continuous mode is relatively stable. All operational parameters show good capacity for substrate removal, and nitrogen and sulfate were the main reaction products. Polymerase Chain Reaction-Denaturing Gradient Gel Electrophoresis (PCR-DGGE) analysis is employed to obtain profiles of the bacterial communities present in inoculum and suspension of four MFCs. Based on the community diversity indices and Spearman correlation analyses, significant correlation exists between Richness of the community of anode chamber and the electricity generated, while no strong correlation is evident between other indexes (Shannon index, Simpson index and Equitability index) and the electricity. Additionally, the results of Principal Component Analysis (PCA) suggest that MFCs suffering from current shock have similar suspension communities, while the others have diverse microbial communities.

  1. Microbial cell retention in a melting High Arctic snowpack, Svalbard

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zarsky, Jakub; Björkman, Mats; Kühnel, Rafael; Hell, Katherina; Hodson, Andy; Sattler, Birgit; Psenner, Roland

    2014-05-01

    Introduction The melting snow pack represents a highly dynamic system not only for chemical compounds but also for bacterial cells. Microbial activity was found at subzero temperatures in ice veins when liquid water persists due to high concentration of ions on the surface of snow crystals and brine channels between large ice crystals in ice. Several observations also suggest microbial activity under subzero temperatures in seasonal snow. Even with regard to the spatial and temporal relevance of snow ecosystems, microbial activity in such an extreme habitat represents a relatively small proportion in the carbon flux of the global ecosystem and even of the glacial ecosystems specifically. On the other hand, it represents a remarkable piece of mosaic of the microbial activity in glacial ecosystems because the snow pack represents the first contact between the atmosphere and cryosphere. This topic also embodies vital crossovers to biogeochemistry and ecotoxicology, offering a quantitative view of utilization of various substrates relevant for downstream ecosystems. Here we present our study of the dynamics of both solvents and cells suspended in meltwater of the melting snowpack on a high arctic glacier to demonstrate the spatio-temporal constraint of interaction between solvent and bacterial cells in this environment. Method We used 6 lysimeters inserted into the bottom of the snowpack to collect replicated samples of melt water before it comes into contact with basal ice or slush layer at the base of the snow pack. The sampling site was chosen at Midre Lovénbreen (Svalbard, Kongsfjorden, MLB stake 6) where the snow pack showed melting on the surface but the basal ice was still dry. Sampling was conducted in June 2010 for a period of 10 days once per day and the snow profile was sampled according to distinguished layers in the profile at the beginning of the field mission and as bulk at its end. The height of snow above the lysimeters dropped from the initial 74 cm

  2. Cell Cycle and Cell Size Dependent Gene Expression Reveals Distinct Subpopulations at Single-Cell Level

    PubMed Central

    Dolatabadi, Soheila; Candia, Julián; Akrap, Nina; Vannas, Christoffer; Tesan Tomic, Tajana; Losert, Wolfgang; Landberg, Göran; Åman, Pierre; Ståhlberg, Anders

    2017-01-01

    Cell proliferation includes a series of events that is tightly regulated by several checkpoints and layers of control mechanisms. Most studies have been performed on large cell populations, but detailed understanding of cell dynamics and heterogeneity requires single-cell analysis. Here, we used quantitative real-time PCR, profiling the expression of 93 genes in single-cells from three different cell lines. Individual unsynchronized cells from three different cell lines were collected in different cell cycle phases (G0/G1 – S – G2/M) with variable cell sizes. We found that the total transcript level per cell and the expression of most individual genes correlated with progression through the cell cycle, but not with cell size. By applying the random forests algorithm, a supervised machine learning approach, we show how a multi-gene signature that classifies individual cells into their correct cell cycle phase and cell size can be generated. To identify the most predictive genes we used a variable selection strategy. Detailed analysis of cell cycle predictive genes allowed us to define subpopulations with distinct gene expression profiles and to calculate a cell cycle index that illustrates the transition of cells between cell cycle phases. In conclusion, we provide useful experimental approaches and bioinformatics to identify informative and predictive genes at the single-cell level, which opens up new means to describe and understand cell proliferation and subpopulation dynamics. PMID:28179914

  3. SUMOylation-mediated regulation of cell cycle progression and cancer

    PubMed Central

    Eifler, Karolin; Vertegaal, Alfred C.O.

    2016-01-01

    SUMOylation plays critical roles during cell cycle progression. Many important cell cycle regulators, including many oncogenes and tumor suppressors, are functionally regulated via SUMOylation. The dynamic SUMOylation pattern observed throughout the cell cycle is ensured via distinct spatial and temporal regulation of the SUMO machinery. Additionally, SUMOylation cooperates with other post-translational modifications to mediate cell cycle progression. Deregulation of these SUMOylation and deSUMOylation enzymes causes severe defects in cell proliferation and genome stability. Different types of cancers were recently shown to be dependent on a functioning SUMOylation system, a finding that could potentially be exploited in anti-cancer therapies. PMID:26601932

  4. Produced Water Treatment Using Microbial Fuel Cell Technology

    SciTech Connect

    Borole, A. P.; Campbell, R.

    2011-05-20

    ORNL has developed a treatment for produced water using a combination of microbial fuel cells and electrosorption. A collaboration between Campbell Applied Physics and ORNL was initiated to further investigate development of the technology and apply it to treatment of field produced water. The project successfully demonstrated the potential of microbial fuel cells to generate electricity from organics in produced water. A steady voltage was continuously generated for several days using the system developed in this study. In addition to the extraction of electrical energy from the organic contaminants, use of the energy at the representative voltage was demonstrated for salts removal or desalination of the produced water. Thus, the technology has potential to remove organic as well as ionic contaminants with minimal energy input using this technology. This is a novel energy-efficient method to treat produced water. Funding to test the technology at larger scale is being pursued to enable application development.

  5. Composite materials for polymer electrolyte membrane microbial fuel cells.

    PubMed

    Antolini, Ermete

    2015-07-15

    Recently, the feasibility of using composite metal-carbon, metal-polymer, polymer-carbon, polymer-polymer and carbon-carbon materials in microbial fuel cells (MFCs) has been investigated. These materials have been tested as MFC anode catalyst (microorganism) supports, cathode catalysts and membranes. These hybrid materials, possessing the properties of each component, or even with a synergistic effect, would present improved characteristics with respect to the bare components. In this paper we present an overview of the use of these composite materials in microbial fuel cells. The characteristics of the composite materials as well as their effect on MFC performance were compared with those of the individual component and/or the conventionally used materials.

  6. Turnover of microbial groups and cell components in soil: 13C analysis of cellular biomarkers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gunina, Anna; Dippold, Michaela; Glaser, Bruno; Kuzyakov, Yakov

    2017-01-01

    Microorganisms regulate the carbon (C) cycle in soil, controlling the utilization and recycling of organic substances. To reveal the contribution of particular microbial groups to C utilization and turnover within the microbial cells, the fate of 13C-labelled glucose was studied under field conditions. Glucose-derived 13C was traced in cytosol, amino sugars and phospholipid fatty acid (PLFA) pools at intervals of 3, 10 and 50 days after glucose addition into the soil. 13C enrichment in PLFAs ( ˜ 1.5 % of PLFA C at day 3) was an order of magnitude greater than in cytosol, showing the importance of cell membranes for initial C utilization. The 13C enrichment in amino sugars of living microorganisms at day 3 accounted for 0.57 % of total C pool; as a result, we infer that the replacement of C in cell wall components is 3 times slower than that of cell membranes. The C turnover time in the cytosol (150 days) was 3 times longer than in PLFAs (47 days). Consequently, even though the cytosol pool has the fastest processing rates compared to other cellular compartments, intensive recycling of components here leads to a long C turnover time. Both PLFA and amino-sugar profiles indicated that bacteria dominated in glucose utilization. 13C enrichment decreased with time for bacterial cell membrane components, but it remained constant or even increased for filamentous microorganisms. 13C enrichment of muramic acid was the 3.5 times greater than for galactosamine, showing a more rapid turnover of bacterial cell wall components compared to fungal. Thus, bacteria utilize a greater proportion of low-molecular-weight organic substances, whereas filamentous microorganisms are responsible for further C transformations. Thus, tracing 13C in cellular compounds with contrasting turnover rates elucidated the role of microbial groups and their cellular compartments in C utilization and recycling in soil. The results also reflect that microbial C turnover is not restricted to the death or

  7. USE OF THE COMPOSITION AND STABLE CARBONIISOTOPE RATIO OF MICROBIAL FATTY ACIDS TO STUDY CARBON CYCLING

    EPA Science Inventory

    We use measurements of the concentration and stable carbon isotopic ratio (*13C) of individual microbial phospholipid fatty acids (PLFAs) in soils and sediments as indicators of live microbial biomass levels and microbial carbon source. For studies of soil organic matter (SOM) cy...

  8. New insights in Microbial Fuel Cells: novel solid phase anolyte.

    PubMed

    Tommasi, Tonia; Salvador, Gian Paolo; Quaglio, Marzia

    2016-07-04

    For the development of long lasting portable microbial fuel cells (MFCs) new strategies are necessary to overcome critical issues such as hydraulic pump system and the biochemical substrate retrieval overtime to sustain bacteria metabolism. The present work proposes the use of a synthetic solid anolyte (SSA), constituted by agar, carbonaceous and nitrogen sources dissolved into diluted seawater. Results of a month-test showed the potential of the new SSA-MFC as a long lasting low energy consuming system.

  9. Enzyme Amplified Detection of Microbial Cell Wall Components

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Wainwright, Norman R.

    2004-01-01

    This proposal is MBL's portion of NASA's Johnson Space Center's Astrobiology Center led by Principal Investigator, Dr. David McKay, entitled: 'Institute for the Study of Biomarkers in Astromaterials.' Dr. Norman Wainwright is the principal investigator at MBL and is responsible for developing methods to detect trace quantities of microbial cell wall chemicals using the enzyme amplification system of Limulus polyphemus and other related methods.

  10. New insights in Microbial Fuel Cells: novel solid phase anolyte

    PubMed Central

    Tommasi, Tonia; Salvador, Gian Paolo; Quaglio, Marzia

    2016-01-01

    For the development of long lasting portable microbial fuel cells (MFCs) new strategies are necessary to overcome critical issues such as hydraulic pump system and the biochemical substrate retrieval overtime to sustain bacteria metabolism. The present work proposes the use of a synthetic solid anolyte (SSA), constituted by agar, carbonaceous and nitrogen sources dissolved into diluted seawater. Results of a month-test showed the potential of the new SSA-MFC as a long lasting low energy consuming system. PMID:27375205

  11. New insights in Microbial Fuel Cells: novel solid phase anolyte

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tommasi, Tonia; Salvador, Gian Paolo; Quaglio, Marzia

    2016-07-01

    For the development of long lasting portable microbial fuel cells (MFCs) new strategies are necessary to overcome critical issues such as hydraulic pump system and the biochemical substrate retrieval overtime to sustain bacteria metabolism. The present work proposes the use of a synthetic solid anolyte (SSA), constituted by agar, carbonaceous and nitrogen sources dissolved into diluted seawater. Results of a month-test showed the potential of the new SSA-MFC as a long lasting low energy consuming system.

  12. Disease and Carrier Isolates of Neisseria meningitidis Cause G1 Cell Cycle Arrest in Human Epithelial Cells

    PubMed Central

    von Papen, Michael; Oosthuysen, Wilhelm F.; Becam, Jérôme; Claus, Heike

    2016-01-01

    Microbial pathogens have developed several mechanisms to modulate and interfere with host cell cycle progression. In this study, we analyzed the effect of the human pathogen Neisseria meningitidis on the cell cycle of epithelial cells. Two pathogenic isolates, as well as two carrier isolates, were tested for their ability to adhere to and invade into the epithelial cell lines Detroit 562 and NP69 and to modulate the cell cycle. We found that all isolates adhered equally well to both Detroit 562 and NP69 cells, whereas the carrier isolates were significantly less invasive. Using propidium iodide staining and 5-ethynyl-2′-deoxyuridine pulse-labeling, we provide evidence that meningococcal infection arrested cells in the G1 phase of the cell cycle at 24 h postinfection. In parallel, a significant decrease of cells in the S phase was observed. Interestingly, G1-phase arrest was only induced after infection with live bacteria but not with heat-killed bacteria. By Western blotting we demonstrate that bacterial infection resulted in a decreased protein level of the cell cycle regulator cyclin D1, whereas cyclin E expression levels were increased. Furthermore, N. meningitidis infection induced an accumulation of the cyclin-dependent kinase inhibitor (CKI) p21WAF1/CIP1 that was accompanied by a redistribution of this CKI to the cell nucleus, as shown by immunofluorescence analysis. Moreover, the p27CIP1 CKI was redistributed and showed punctate foci in infected cells. In summary, we present data that N. meningitidis can interfere with the processes of host cell cycle regulation. PMID:27430269

  13. Stable Isotope Phenotyping via Cluster Analysis of NanoSIMS Data As a Method for Characterizing Distinct Microbial Ecophysiologies and Sulfur-Cycling in the Environment

    PubMed Central

    Dawson, Katherine S.; Scheller, Silvan; Dillon, Jesse G.; Orphan, Victoria J.

    2016-01-01

    Stable isotope probing (SIP) is a valuable tool for gaining insights into ecophysiology and biogeochemical cycling of environmental microbial communities by tracking isotopically labeled compounds into cellular macromolecules as well as into byproducts of respiration. SIP, in conjunction with nanoscale secondary ion mass spectrometry (NanoSIMS), allows for the visualization of isotope incorporation at the single cell level. In this manner, both active cells within a diverse population as well as heterogeneity in metabolism within a homogeneous population can be observed. The ecophysiological implications of these single cell stable isotope measurements are often limited to the taxonomic resolution of paired fluorescence in situ hybridization (FISH) microscopy. Here we introduce a taxonomy-independent method using multi-isotope SIP and NanoSIMS for identifying and grouping phenotypically similar microbial cells by their chemical and isotopic fingerprint. This method was applied to SIP experiments in a sulfur-cycling biofilm collected from sulfidic intertidal vents amended with 13C-acetate, 15N-ammonium, and 33S-sulfate. Using a cluster analysis technique based on fuzzy c-means to group cells according to their isotope (13C/12C, 15N/14N, and 33S/32S) and elemental ratio (C/CN and S/CN) profiles, our analysis partitioned ~2200 cellular regions of interest (ROIs) into five distinct groups. These isotope phenotype groupings are reflective of the variation in labeled substrate uptake by cells in a multispecies metabolic network dominated by Gamma- and Deltaproteobacteria. Populations independently grouped by isotope phenotype were subsequently compared with paired FISH data, demonstrating a single coherent deltaproteobacterial cluster and multiple gammaproteobacterial groups, highlighting the distinct ecophysiologies of spatially-associated microbes within the sulfur-cycling biofilm from White Point Beach, CA. PMID:27303371

  14. Dense microbial community on a ferromanganese nodule from the ultra-oligotrophic South Pacific Gyre: Implications for biogeochemical cycles

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Shiraishi, Fumito; Mitsunobu, Satoshi; Suzuki, Katsuhiko; Hoshino, Tatsuhiko; Morono, Yuki; Inagaki, Fumio

    2016-08-01

    During Integrated Ocean Drilling Program (IODP) Expedition 329, a deep-sea ferromanganese nodule and surrounding sediment were collected from the South Pacific Gyre, the most oligotrophic oceanic environment on earth. Using a combination of cryo-sectioning and fluorescence-based cell counting techniques, we determined that the microbial cell density at the very surface of the nodule was ∼108 cells cm-3, three orders of magnitude higher than that in the surrounding sediment. Analysis of bacterial and archaeal 16S rRNA gene sequences (∼1400 bp) indicated that the taxonomic composition of the nodule-associated community differed markedly from that of the sediment-associated community. Members of Marine Group I (MGI) Thaumarchaeota are potentially crucial for sustaining the high cell density because both ammonia and Cu were available on the nodule surface, making it suitable for ammonia-oxidizing chemolithoautotrophy mediated by copper enzymes. Combined cryo-sectioning and synchrotron analysis of the nodule surface revealed both hexagonal birnessite resembling δ-MnO2 and triclinic birnessite, minerals characteristic of biogenic oxide and its secondary product, respectively. Regardless of these possible biogenic features, only one gene sequence exhibited some similarity to previously identified manganese-oxidizing bacteria. On the other hand, MGI Thaumarchaeota were assumed as potential candidate of manganese oxidizers because they have multi-copper oxidase that is utilized by most known manganese oxidizers. Therefore, this archaeal group is considered to play a significant ecological role as a primary producer in biogeochemical elemental cycles in the ultra-oligotrophic abyssal plain.

  15. Characterization of a microbial fuel cell with reticulated carbon foam electrodes.

    PubMed

    Lepage, Guillaume; Albernaz, Fabio Ovenhausen; Perrier, Gérard; Merlin, Gérard

    2012-11-01

    A microbial fuel cell with open-pore reticulated vitreous carbon electrodes is studied to assess the suitability of this material in a batch mode, in the perspective of flow-through reactors for wastewater treatment with electricity generation. The cell shows good stability and fair robustness in regards to substrate cycles. A power density of 40 W/m(3) is reached. The cell efficiency is mainly limited by cathodic transfers, representing 85% of the global overpotential in open circuit. Through impedance spectrocopy, equivalent circuit modeling reveals the complex nature of the bioelectrochemical phenomena. The global electrical behavior of the cell seems to result in the addition of three anodic and two cathodic distinct phenomena. On the cathode side, the Warburg element in the model is related to the diffusion of oxygen. Warburg resistance and time are respectively 2.99 kΩ cm(2) and 16.4s, similar to those published elsewhere.

  16. Electricity generation from synthesis gas by microbial processes: CO fermentation and microbial fuel cell technology.

    PubMed

    Kim, Daehee; Chang, In Seop

    2009-10-01

    A microbiological process was established to harvest electricity from the carbon monoxide (CO). A CO fermenter was enriched with CO as the sole carbon source. The DGGE/DNA sequencing results showed that Acetobacterium spp. were enriched from the anaerobic digester fluid. After the fermenter was operated under continuous mode, the products were then continuously fed to the microbial fuel cell (MFC) to generate electricity. Even though the conversion yield was quite low, this study proved that synthesis gas (syn-gas) can be converted to electricity with the aid of microbes that do not possess the drawbacks of metal catalysts of conventional methods.

  17. A computational model for biofilm-based microbial fuel cells.

    PubMed

    Picioreanu, Cristian; Head, Ian M; Katuri, Krishna P; van Loosdrecht, Mark C M; Scott, Keith

    2007-07-01

    This study describes and evaluates a computational model for microbial fuel cells (MFCs) based on redox mediators with several populations of suspended and attached biofilm microorganisms, and multiple dissolved chemical species. A number of biological, chemical and electrochemical reactions can occur in the bulk liquid, in the biofilm and at the electrode surface. The evolution in time of important MFC parameters (current, charge, voltage and power production, consumption of substrates, suspended and attached biomass growth) has been simulated under several operational conditions. Model calculations evaluated the effect of different substrate utilization yields, standard potential of the redox mediator, ratio of suspended to biofilm cells, initial substrate and mediator concentrations, mediator diffusivity, mass transfer boundary layer, external load resistance, endogenous metabolism, repeated substrate additions and competition between different microbial groups in the biofilm. Two- and three-dimensional model simulations revealed the heterogeneous current distribution over the planar anode surface for younger and patchy biofilms, but becoming uniform in older and more homogeneous biofilms. For uniformly flat biofilms one-dimensional models should give sufficiently accurate descriptions of produced currents. Voltage- and power-current characteristics can also be calculated at different moments in time to evaluate the limiting regime in which the MFC operates. Finally, the model predictions are tested with previously reported experimental data obtained in a batch MFC with a Geobacter biofilm fed with acetate. The potential of the general modeling framework presented here is in the understanding and design of more complex cases of wastewater-fed microbial fuel cells.

  18. Indirect-fired gas turbine dual fuel cell power cycle

    DOEpatents

    Micheli, Paul L.; Williams, Mark C.; Sudhoff, Frederick A.

    1996-01-01

    A fuel cell and gas turbine combined cycle system which includes dual fuel cell cycles combined with a gas turbine cycle wherein a solid oxide fuel cell cycle operated at a pressure of between 6 to 15 atms tops the turbine cycle and is used to produce CO.sub.2 for a molten carbonate fuel cell cycle which bottoms the turbine and is operated at essentially atmospheric pressure. A high pressure combustor is used to combust the excess fuel from the topping fuel cell cycle to further heat the pressurized gas driving the turbine. A low pressure combustor is used to combust the excess fuel from the bottoming fuel cell to reheat the gas stream passing out of the turbine which is used to preheat the pressurized air stream entering the topping fuel cell before passing into the bottoming fuel cell cathode. The CO.sub.2 generated in the solid oxide fuel cell cycle cascades through the system to the molten carbonate fuel cell cycle cathode.

  19. In Situ fuel processing in a microbial fuel cell.

    PubMed

    Bahartan, Karnit; Amir, Liron; Israel, Alvaro; Lichtenstein, Rachel G; Alfonta, Lital

    2012-09-01

    A microbial fuel cell (MFC) was designed in which fuel is generated in the cell by the enzyme glucoamylase, which is displayed on the surface of yeast. The enzyme digests starch specifically into monomeric glucose units and as a consequence enables further glucose oxidation by microorganisms present in the MFC anode. The oxidative enzyme glucose oxidase was coupled to the glucoamylase digestive enzyme. When both enzymes were displayed on the surface of yeast cells in a mixed culture, superior fuel-cell performance was observed in comparison with other combinations of yeast cells, unmodified yeast, or pure enzymes. The feasibility of the use of the green macroalgae Ulva lactuca in such a genetically modified MFC was also demonstrated. Herein, we report the performance of such fuel cells as a proof of concept for the enzymatic digestion of complex organic fuels in the anode of MFCs to render the fuel more available to microorganisms.

  20. Innate immune recognition of microbial cell wall components and microbial strategies to evade such recognitions.

    PubMed

    Sukhithasri, V; Nisha, N; Biswas, Lalitha; Anil Kumar, V; Biswas, Raja

    2013-08-25

    The innate immune system constitutes the first line of defence against invading microbes. The basis of this defence resides in the recognition of defined structural motifs of the microbes called "Microbial associated molecular patterns" that are absent in the host. Cell wall, the outer layer of both bacterial and fungal cells, a unique structure that is absent in the host and is recognized by the germ line encoded host receptors. Nucleotide oligomerization domain proteins, peptidoglycan recognition proteins and C-type lectins are host receptors that are involved in the recognition of bacterial cell wall (usually called peptidoglycan), whereas fungal cell wall components (N- and O-linked mannans, β-glucans etc.) are recognized by host receptors like C-type lectins (Dectin-1, Dectin-2, mannose receptor, DC-SIGN), Toll like receptors-2 and -4 (TLR-2 and TLR-4). These recognitions lead to activation of a variety of host signaling cascades and ultimate production of anti-microbial compounds including phospholipase A2, antimicrobial peptides, lysozyme, reactive oxygen and nitrogen species. These molecules act in cohort against the invading microbes to eradicate infections. Additionally pathogen recognition leads to the production of cytokines, which further activate the adaptive immune system. Both pathogenic and commensal bacteria and fungus use numerous strategies to subvert the host defence. These strategies include bacterial peptidoglycan glycan backbone modifications by O-acetylation, N-deacetylation, N-glycolylation and stem peptide modifications by amidation of meso-Diaminopimelic acid; fungal cell wall modifications by shielding the β-glucan layer with mannoproteins and α-1,3 glucan. This review focuses on the recent advances in understanding the role of bacterial and fungal cell wall in their innate immune recognition and evasion strategies.

  1. Nutrient control of microbial carbon cycling along an ombrotrophic-minerotrophic peatland gradient

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Keller, Jason K.; Bauers, Angela K.; Bridgham, Scott D.; Kellogg, Laurie E.; Iversen, Colleen M.

    2006-09-01

    Future climate change and other anthropogenic activities are likely to increase nutrient availability in many peatlands, and it is important to understand how these additional nutrients will influence peatland carbon cycling. We investigated the effects of nitrogen and phosphorus on aerobic CH4 oxidation, anaerobic carbon mineralization (as CO2 and CH4 production), and anaerobic nutrient mineralization in a bog, an intermediate fen, and a rich fen in the Upper Peninsula of Michigan. We utilized a 5-week laboratory nutrient amendment experiment in conjunction with a 6-year field nutrient fertilization experiment to consider how the relative response to nitrogen and phosphorus differed among these wetlands over the short and long term. Field fertilizations generally increased nutrient availability in the upper 15 cm of peat and resulted in shifts in the vegetation community in each peatland. High nitrogen concentrations inhibited CH4 oxidation in bog peat during short-term incubations; however, long-term fertilization with lower concentrations of nitrogen stimulated rates of CH4 oxidation in bog peat. In contrast, no nitrogen effects on CH4 oxidation were observed in the intermediate or rich fen peat. Anaerobic carbon mineralization in bog peat was consistently inhibited by increased phosphorus availability, but similar phosphorus additions had few effects in the intermediate fen and stimulated CH4 production and nutrient mineralization in the rich fen. Our results demonstrate that nitrogen and phosphorus are important controls of peatland microbial carbon cycling; however, the role of these nutrients can differ over the short and long term and is strongly mediated by peatland type.

  2. Recent Advances in Genetic Technique of Microbial Report Cells and Their Applications in Cell Arrays

    PubMed Central

    Kim, Do Hyun; Kim, Moon Il; Park, Hyun Gyu

    2015-01-01

    Microbial cell arrays have attracted consistent attention for their ability to provide unique global data on target analytes at low cost, their capacity for readily detectable and robust cell growth in diverse environments, their high degree of convenience, and their capacity for multiplexing via incorporation of molecularly tailored reporter cells. To highlight recent progress in the field of microbial cell arrays, this review discusses research on genetic engineering of reporter cells, technologies for patterning live cells on solid surfaces, cellular immobilization in different polymers, and studies on their application in environmental monitoring, disease diagnostics, and other related fields. On the basis of these results, we discuss current challenges and future prospects for novel microbial cell arrays, which show promise for use as potent tools for unraveling complex biological processes. PMID:26436087

  3. Metagenomic Profiling of a Microbial Assemblage Associated with the California Mussel: A Node in Networks of Carbon and Nitrogen Cycling

    PubMed Central

    Pfister, Catherine A.; Meyer, Folker; Antonopoulos, Dionysios A.

    2010-01-01

    Mussels are conspicuous and often abundant members of rocky shores and may constitute an important site for the nitrogen cycle due to their feeding and excretion activities. We used shotgun metagenomics of the microbial community associated with the surface of mussels (Mytilus californianus) on Tatoosh Island in Washington state to test whether there is a nitrogen-based microbial assemblage associated with mussels. Analyses of both tidepool mussels and those on emergent benches revealed a diverse community of Bacteria and Archaea with approximately 31 million bp from 6 mussels in each habitat. Using MG-RAST, between 22.5–25.6% were identifiable using the SEED non-redundant database for proteins. Of those fragments that were identifiable through MG-RAST, the composition was dominated by Cyanobacteria and Alpha- and Gamma-proteobacteria. Microbial composition was highly similar between the tidepool and emergent bench mussels, suggesting similar functions across these different microhabitats. One percent of the proteins identified in each sample were related to nitrogen cycling. When normalized to protein discovery rate, the high diversity and abundance of enzymes related to the nitrogen cycle in mussel-associated microbes is as great or greater than that described for other marine metagenomes. In some instances, the nitrogen-utilizing profile of this assemblage was more concordant with soil metagenomes in the Midwestern U.S. than for open ocean system. Carbon fixation and Calvin cycle enzymes further represented 0.65 and 1.26% of all proteins and their abundance was comparable to a number of open ocean marine metagenomes. In sum, the diversity and abundance of nitrogen and carbon cycle related enzymes in the microbes occupying the shells of Mytilus californianus suggest these mussels provide a node for microbial populations and thus biogeochemical processes. PMID:20463896

  4. Nitrogen cycling processes and microbial community composition in bed sediments in the Yukon River at Pilot Station

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Repert, Deborah A.; Underwood, Jennifer C.; Smith, Richard L.; Song, Bongkeun

    2014-12-01

    Information on the contribution of nitrogen (N)-cycling processes in bed sediments to river nutrient fluxes in large northern latitude river systems is limited. This study examined the relationship between N-cycling processes in bed sediments and N speciation and loading in the Yukon River near its mouth at the Bering Sea. We conducted laboratory bioassays to measure N-cycling processes in sediment samples collected over distinct water cycle seasons. In conjunction, the microbial community composition in the bed sediments using genes involved in N-cycling (narG, napA, nosZ, and amoA) and 16S rRNA gene pyrosequences was examined. Temporal variation was observed in net N mineralization, nitrate uptake, and denitrification rate potentials and correlated strongly with sediment carbon (C) and extractable N content and microbial community composition rather than with river water nutrient concentrations. The C content of the bed sediment was notably impacted by the spring flood, ranging from 1.1% in the midst of an ice-jam to 0.1% immediately after ice-out, suggesting a buildup of organic material (OM) prior to scouring of the bed sediments during ice break up. The dominant members of the microbial community that explained differences in N-processing rates belonged to the genera Crenothrix, Flavobacterium, and the family of Comamonadaceae. Our results suggest that biogeochemical processing rates in the bed sediments appear to be more coupled to hydrology, nutrient availability in the sediments, and microbial community composition rather than river nutrient concentrations at Pilot Station.

  5. Nitrogen cycling processes and microbial community composition in bed sediments in the Yukon River at Pilot Station

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Repert, Deborah A.; Underwood, Jennifer C.; Smith, Richard L.; Song, Bongkeun

    2014-01-01

    Information on the contribution of nitrogen (N)-cycling processes in bed sediments to river nutrient fluxes in large northern latitude river systems is limited. This study examined the relationship between N-cycling processes in bed sediments and N speciation and loading in the Yukon River near its mouth at the Bering Sea. We conducted laboratory bioassays to measure N-cycling processes in sediment samples collected over distinct water cycle seasons. In conjunction, the microbial community composition in the bed sediments using genes involved in N-cycling (narG, napA, nosZ, and amoA) and 16S rRNA gene pyrosequences was examined. Temporal variation was observed in net N mineralization, nitrate uptake, and denitrification rate potentials and correlated strongly with sediment carbon (C) and extractable N content and microbial community composition rather than with river water nutrient concentrations. The C content of the bed sediment was notably impacted by the spring flood, ranging from 1.1% in the midst of an ice-jam to 0.1% immediately after ice-out, suggesting a buildup of organic material (OM) prior to scouring of the bed sediments during ice break up. The dominant members of the microbial community that explained differences in N-processing rates belonged to the genera Crenothrix,Flavobacterium, and the family of Comamonadaceae. Our results suggest that biogeochemical processing rates in the bed sediments appear to be more coupled to hydrology, nutrient availability in the sediments, and microbial community composition rather than river nutrient concentrations at Pilot Station.

  6. Microbial heterotrophy coupled to Fe-S-As cycling in a shallow-sea hydrothermal system

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lu, G.; Amend, J.

    2013-12-01

    To date, there are only a few known heterotrophic arsenite oxidizers and arsenate reducers. They utilize organic compounds as their carbon source and/or as important electron donors in the transfer arsenic in high temperature environments. Arsenic in hydrothermal vent systems can be immobilized at low temperatures through (ad)sorption on iron oxide and other iron-bearing minerals. Interactions with sulfur species can also affect the redox state of arsenic species. A better understanding of microbially-catalyzed reactions involving carbon, arsenic, iron and sulfur would provide constraints on the mobility of arsenic in a wide variety of natural and engineered systems. The aim of this study is to establish links between microbial distribution and in situ Fe-S-As cycling processes in a shallow-sea hydrothermal vent system. We investigated three shallow-sea hydrothermal vents, Champagne Hot Spring (CHS), Soufriere Spring (SOU) and Portsmouth Spring (PM), located off the western coast of Dominica, Lesser Antilles. CHS and SOU are characterized by moderate temperatures (46oC and 55oC, respectively), and PM is substantially hotter (~90-111 oC). Two sediment cores (one close to and one far from the thermal source) were collected from CHS and from SOU. Porewaters in both background cores had low concentrations of arsenic (mostly As3+, to a lesser extent As5+, DMA, MMA) and ferrous iron. The arsenic concentrations (predominantly As3+) in the CHS high temperature core were 30-90 nM, tracking with dissolved iron. Similar to CHS, the arsenic concentration in the SOU high temperature core was dominated by As3+ and controlled by ferrous iron. However, the arsenic concentration at SOU is comparatively higher, up to 1.9 mM. At the hotter and deeper PM site, highly elevated arsenic levels (1-2.5 mM) were measured, values that are among the highest arsenic concentrations ever reported in a marine hydrothermal system. Several autotrophic and heterotrophic media at two pHs (5.5 and 8

  7. Microbial Phosphite Oxidation and Its Potential Role in the Global Phosphorus and Carbon Cycles.

    PubMed

    Figueroa, I A; Coates, J D

    2017-01-01

    Phosphite [Formula: see text] is a highly soluble, reduced phosphorus compound that is often overlooked in biogeochemical analyses. Although the oxidation of phosphite to phosphate is a highly exergonic process (E(o)(')=-650mV), phosphite is kinetically stable and can account for 10-30% of the total dissolved P in various environments. There is also evidence that phosphite was more prevalent under the reducing conditions of the Archean period and may have been involved in the development of early life. Its role as a phosphorus source for a variety of extant microorganisms has been known since the 1950s, and the pathways involved in assimilatory phosphite oxidation have been well characterized. More recently, it was demonstrated that phosphite could also act as an electron donor for energy metabolism in a process known as dissimilatory phosphite oxidation (DPO). The bacterium described in this study, Desulfotignum phosphitoxidans strain FiPS-3, was isolated from brackish sediments and is capable of growing by coupling phosphite oxidation to the reduction of either sulfate or carbon dioxide. FiPS-3 remains the only isolated organism capable of DPO, and the prevalence of this metabolism in the environment is still unclear. Nonetheless, given the widespread presence of phosphite in the environment and the thermodynamic favorability of its oxidation, microbial phosphite oxidation may play an important and hitherto unrecognized role in the global phosphorus and carbon cycles.

  8. Glyphosate-based pesticides affect cell cycle regulation.

    PubMed

    Marc, Julie; Mulner-Lorillon, Odile; Bellé, Robert

    2004-04-01

    Cell-cycle dysregulation is a hallmark of tumor cells and human cancers. Failure in the cell-cycle checkpoints leads to genomic instability and subsequent development of cancers from the initial affected cell. A worldwide used product Roundup 3plus, based on glyphosate as the active herbicide, was suggested to be of human health concern since it induced cell cycle dysfunction as judged from analysis of the first cell division of sea urchin embryos, a recognized model for cell cycle studies. Several glyphosate-based pesticides from different manufacturers were assayed in comparison with Roundup 3plus for their ability to interfere with the cell cycle regulation. All the tested products, Amega, Cargly, Cosmic, and Roundup Biovert induced cell cycle dysfunction. The threshold concentration for induction of cell cycle dysfunction was evaluated for each product and suggests high risk by inhalation for people in the vicinity of the pesticide handling sprayed at 500 to 4000 times higher dose than the cell-cycle adverse concentration.

  9. Basal p21 controls population heterogeneity in cycling and quiescent cell cycle states

    PubMed Central

    Overton, K. Wesley; Spencer, Sabrina L.; Noderer, William L.; Meyer, Tobias; Wang, Clifford L.

    2014-01-01

    Phenotypic heterogeneity within a population of genetically identical cells is emerging as a common theme in multiple biological systems, including human cell biology and cancer. Using live-cell imaging, flow cytometry, and kinetic modeling, we showed that two states—quiescence and cell cycling—can coexist within an isogenic population of human cells and resulted from low basal expression levels of p21, a Cyclin-dependent kinase (CDK) inhibitor (CKI). We attribute the p21-dependent heterogeneity in cell cycle activity to double-negative feedback regulation involving CDK2, p21, and E3 ubiquitin ligases. In support of this mechanism, analysis of cells at a point before cell cycle entry (i.e., before the G1/S transition) revealed a p21–CDK2 axis that determines quiescent and cycling cell states. Our findings suggest a mechanistic role for p21 in generating heterogeneity in both normal tissues and tumors. PMID:25267623

  10. Temporal stability of the microbial community in sewage-polluted seawater exposed to natural sunlight cycles and marine microbiota.

    PubMed

    Sassoubre, Lauren M; Yamahara, Kevan M; Boehm, Alexandria B

    2015-03-01

    Billions of gallons of untreated wastewater enter the coastal ocean each year. Once sewage microorganisms are in the marine environment, they are exposed to environmental stressors, such as sunlight and predation. Previous research has investigated the fate of individual sewage microorganisms in seawater but not the entire sewage microbial community. The present study used next-generation sequencing (NGS) to examine how the microbial community in sewage-impacted seawater changes over 48 h when exposed to natural sunlight cycles and marine microbiota. We compared the results from microcosms composed of unfiltered seawater (containing naturally occurring marine microbiota) and filtered seawater (containing no marine microbiota) to investigate the effect of marine microbiota. We also compared the results from microcosms that were exposed to natural sunlight cycles with those from microcosms kept in the dark to investigate the effect of sunlight. The microbial community composition and the relative abundance of operational taxonomic units (OTUs) changed over 48 h in all microcosms. Exposure to sunlight had a significant effect on both community composition and OTU abundance. The effect of marine microbiota, however, was minimal. The proportion of sewage-derived microorganisms present in the microcosms decreased rapidly within 48 h, and the decrease was the most pronounced in the presence of both sunlight and marine microbiota, where the proportion decreased from 85% to 3% of the total microbial community. The results from this study demonstrate the strong effect that sunlight has on microbial community composition, as measured by NGS, and the importance of considering temporal effects in future applications of NGS to identify microbial pollution sources.

  11. Temporal Stability of the Microbial Community in Sewage-Polluted Seawater Exposed to Natural Sunlight Cycles and Marine Microbiota

    PubMed Central

    Sassoubre, Lauren M.; Yamahara, Kevan M.

    2015-01-01

    Billions of gallons of untreated wastewater enter the coastal ocean each year. Once sewage microorganisms are in the marine environment, they are exposed to environmental stressors, such as sunlight and predation. Previous research has investigated the fate of individual sewage microorganisms in seawater but not the entire sewage microbial community. The present study used next-generation sequencing (NGS) to examine how the microbial community in sewage-impacted seawater changes over 48 h when exposed to natural sunlight cycles and marine microbiota. We compared the results from microcosms composed of unfiltered seawater (containing naturally occurring marine microbiota) and filtered seawater (containing no marine microbiota) to investigate the effect of marine microbiota. We also compared the results from microcosms that were exposed to natural sunlight cycles with those from microcosms kept in the dark to investigate the effect of sunlight. The microbial community composition and the relative abundance of operational taxonomic units (OTUs) changed over 48 h in all microcosms. Exposure to sunlight had a significant effect on both community composition and OTU abundance. The effect of marine microbiota, however, was minimal. The proportion of sewage-derived microorganisms present in the microcosms decreased rapidly within 48 h, and the decrease was the most pronounced in the presence of both sunlight and marine microbiota, where the proportion decreased from 85% to 3% of the total microbial community. The results from this study demonstrate the strong effect that sunlight has on microbial community composition, as measured by NGS, and the importance of considering temporal effects in future applications of NGS to identify microbial pollution sources. PMID:25576619

  12. Cell Cycle Constraints and Environmental Control of Local DNA Hypomethylation in α-Proteobacteria

    PubMed Central

    Russo, Giancarlo; Frandi, Antonio; Patrignani, Andrea

    2016-01-01

    Heritable DNA methylation imprints are ubiquitous and underlie genetic variability from bacteria to humans. In microbial genomes, DNA methylation has been implicated in gene transcription, DNA replication and repair, nucleoid segregation, transposition and virulence of pathogenic strains. Despite the importance of local (hypo)methylation at specific loci, how and when these patterns are established during the cell cycle remains poorly characterized. Taking advantage of the small genomes and the synchronizability of α-proteobacteria, we discovered that conserved determinants of the cell cycle transcriptional circuitry establish specific hypomethylation patterns in the cell cycle model system Caulobacter crescentus. We used genome-wide methyl-N6-adenine (m6A-) analyses by restriction-enzyme-cleavage sequencing (REC-Seq) and single-molecule real-time (SMRT) sequencing to show that MucR, a transcriptional regulator that represses virulence and cell cycle genes in S-phase but no longer in G1-phase, occludes 5’-GANTC-3’ sequence motifs that are methylated by the DNA adenine methyltransferase CcrM. Constitutive expression of CcrM or heterologous methylases in at least two different α-proteobacteria homogenizes m6A patterns even when MucR is present and affects promoter activity. Environmental stress (phosphate limitation) can override and reconfigure local hypomethylation patterns imposed by the cell cycle circuitry that dictate when and where local hypomethylation is instated. PMID:27997543

  13. Sustainable wastewater treatment: how might microbial fuel cells contribute.

    PubMed

    Oh, Sung T; Kim, Jung Rae; Premier, Giuliano C; Lee, Tae Ho; Kim, Changwon; Sloan, William T

    2010-01-01

    The need for cost-effective low-energy wastewater treatment has never been greater. Clean water for our expanding and predominantly urban global population will be expensive to deliver, eats into our diminishing carbon-based energy reserves and consequently contributes to green house gases in the atmosphere and climate change. Thus every potential cost and energy cutting measure for wastewater treatment should be explored. Microbial fuel cells (MFCs) could potentially yield such savings but, to achieve this, requires significant advances in our understanding in a few critical areas and in our designs of the overall systems. Here we review the research which might accelerate our progress towards sustainable wastewater treatment using MFCs: system control and modelling and the understanding of the ecology of the microbial communities that catalyse the generation of electricity.

  14. Recent Progress of Nanostructure Modified Anodes in Microbial Fuel Cells.

    PubMed

    Kim, Marie; Kim, Hyeon Woo; Nam, Joo-Youn; In, Su-Il

    2015-09-01

    Microbial fuel cell (MFC) is a bio-electrochemical system which converts chemical energy into electrical energy by catalytic activity of microorganisms. Electrons produced by microbial oxidation from substrates such as organic matter, complex or renewable biomass are transferred to the anode. Protons produced at the anode migrate to the cathode via the wire and combine with oxygen to form water. Therefore MFC technologies are promising approach for generating electricity or hydrogen gas and wastewater treatment. Electrode materials are one of the keys to increase the power output of MFCs. To improve the cost effective performance of MFCs, various electrodes materials, modifications and configurations have been developed. In this paper, among other recent advances of nanostructured electrodes, especially carbon based anodes, are highlighted. The properties of these electrodes, in terms of surface characteristics, conductivity, modifications, and options were reviewed. The applications, challenges and perspectives of the current MFCs electrode for future development in bio or medical field are briefly discussed.

  15. Perchlorate reduction in microbial electrolysis cell with polyaniline modified cathode.

    PubMed

    Li, Jia-Jia; Gao, Ming-Ming; Zhang, Gang; Wang, Xin-Hua; Wang, Shu-Guang; Song, Chao; Xu, Yan-Yan

    2015-02-01

    Excellent perchlorate reduction was obtained under various initial concentrations in a non-membrane microbial electrolysis cell with polyaniline (PANI) modified graphite cathode as sole electron donor. PANI modification is conducive to the formation of biofilm due to its porous structure and good electrocatalytic performance. Compared with cathode without biofilm, over 12% higher reduction rates were acquired in the presence of biocathode. The study demonstrates that, instead of perchlorate reduction, the main contribution of biofilm is involved in facilitate electron transfer from cathode to electrolyte. Interestingly, hairlike structure, referred as to pili-like, was observed in the biofilm as well as in the electrolyte. Additionally, the results show that pili were prone to formation under the condition of external electron field as sole electron donor. Analysis of microbial community suggests that perchlorate reduction bacteria community was most consistent with Azospiraoryzae strain DSM 13638 in the subdivision of the class Proteobacteria.

  16. Flow cytometry analysis of cell cycle and specific cell synchronization with butyrate

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Synchronized cells have been invaluable in many kinds of cell cycle and cell proliferation studies. Butyrate induces cell cycle arrest and apoptosis in MDBK cells. The possibility of using butyrate-blocked cells to obtain synchronized cells was explored and the properties of butyrate-induced cell ...

  17. A hybrid biocathode: surface display of O2-reducing enzymes for microbial fuel cell applications.

    PubMed

    Szczupak, Alon; Kol-Kalman, Dan; Alfonta, Lital

    2012-01-04

    Laccase and bilirubin oxidase were successfully displayed on the surface of yeast cells. Subsequently, these modified yeast cells were used in the cathode compartment of a microbial fuel cell. The performance of the fuel cells is compared.

  18. From the cell cycle to population cycles in phytoplankton-nutrient interactions

    SciTech Connect

    Pascual, M.; Caswell, H.

    1997-04-01

    The internal demographic structure of a population influences its dynamics and its response to the environment. Most models for phytoplankton ignore internal structure and group all cells in a single variable such as total biomass or density. However, a cell does have a life history, the cell division cycle. We investigate the significance of the cell cycle to phytoplankton population dynamics in a variable nutrient environment, using chemostate models. Following the transition point hypothesis, nutrient uptake affects cell development only within a limited segment of the cell cycle. Simulation results demonstrate oscillations in cell numbers and population structure generated by this interaction. When nutrient input is varied periodically, the population displays an aperiodic response with frequencies different from that of the forcing. These results also hold for a model that includes nutrient storage by the cells. These dynamics differ from those of traditional chemostate models and from cell cycle models driven by light cycles. Resource control of cell cycle progression may explain the time delays previously postulated to explain oscillatory transients in chemostate experiments. 78 refs., 22 figs.

  19. Microbial cycling of mercury in contaminated pelagic and wetland sediments of San Pablo Bay, California

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Marvin-DiPasquale, M. C.; Agee, J.L.; Bouse, R.M.; Jaffe, B.E.

    2003-01-01

    San Pablo Bay is an estuary, within northern San Francisco Bay, containing elevated sediment mercury (Hg) levels because of historic loading of hydraulic mining debris during the California gold-rush of the late 1800s. A preliminary investigation of benthic microbial Hg cycling was conducted in surface sediment (0-4 cm) collected from one salt-marsh and three open-water sites. A deeper profile (0-26 cm) was evaluated at one of the open-water locations. Radiolabeled model Hg-compounds were used to measure rates of both methylmercury (MeHg) production and degradation by bacteria. While all sites and depths had similar total-Hg concentrations (0.3-0.6 ppm), and geochemical signatures of mining debris (as eNd, range: -3.08 to -4.37), in-situ MeHg was highest in the marsh (5.4??3.5 ppb) and ??? 0.7 ppb in all open-water sites. Microbial MeHg production (potential rate) in 0-4 surface sediments was also highest in the marsh (3.1 ng g-1 wet sediment day-1) and below detection (<0.06 ng g-1 wet sediment day-1) in open-water locations. The marsh exhibited a methylation/demethylation (M/D) ratio more than 25x that of all open-water locations. Only below the surface 0-4-cm horizon was significant MeHg production potential evident in the open-water sediment profile (0.2-1.1 ng g-1 wet sediment day-1). In-situ Hg methylation rates, calculated from radiotracer rate constants, and in-situ inorganic Hg(II) concentrations compared well with potential rates. However, similarly calculated in-situ rates of MeHg degradation were much lower than potential rates. These preliminary data indicate that wetlands surrounding San Pablo Bay represent important zones of MeHg production, more so than similarly Hg-contaminated adjacent open-water areas. This has significant implications for this and other Hg-impacted systems, where wetland expansion is currently planned.

  20. Microbial food web mapping: linking carbon cycling and community structure in soils through pyrosequencing enabled stable isotope probing

    SciTech Connect

    Buckley, Daniel H.

    2015-03-15

    Soil represents a massive reservoir of active carbon and climate models vary dramatically in predicting how this carbon will respond to climate change over the coming century. A major cause of uncertainty is that we still have a very limited understand the microorganisms that dominate the soil carbon cycle. The vast majority of soil microbes cannot be cultivated in the laboratory and the diversity of organisms and enzymes that participate in the carbon cycle is staggeringly complex. We have developed a new toolbox for exploring the carbon cycle and the metabolic and ecological characteristics of uncultivated microorganisms. The high-resolution nucleic acid stable isotope probing approach that we have developed makes it possible to characterize microbial carbon cycling dynamics in soil. The approach allows us to track multiple 13C-labeled substrates into thousands of microbial taxa over time. Using this approach we have discovered several major lineages of uncultivated microorganisms that participate in cellulose metabolism and are found widely in soils (including Verrucomicrobia and Chloroflexi, which have not previously been implicated as major players in the soil carbon cycle). Furthermore, isotopic labelling of nucleic acids enables community genomics and permits genome fragment binning for a majority of these cellulolytic microorganisms allowing us to explore the metabolic underpinnings of cellulose degradation. This approach has allowed us to describe unexpected dynamics of carbon metabolism with different microbial taxa exhibiting characteristic patterns of carbon substrate incorporation, indicative of distinct ecological strategies. The data we describe allows us to characterize the activity of novel microorganisms as they occur in the environment and these data provide a basis for understanding how the physiological traits of discrete microorganisms sum to govern the complex responses of the soil carbon cycle.

  1. Cell cycle controls stress response and longevity in C. elegans

    PubMed Central

    Dottermusch, Matthias; Lakner, Theresa; Peyman, Tobias; Klein, Marinella; Walz, Gerd; Neumann-Haefelin, Elke

    2016-01-01

    Recent studies have revealed a variety of genes and mechanisms that influence the rate of aging progression. In this study, we identified cell cycle factors as potent regulators of health and longevity in C. elegans. Focusing on the cyclin-dependent kinase 2 (cdk-2) and cyclin E (cye-1), we show that inhibition of cell cycle genes leads to tolerance towards environmental stress and longevity. The reproductive system is known as a key regulator of longevity in C. elegans. We uncovered the gonad as the central organ mediating the effects of cell cycle inhibition on lifespan. In particular, the proliferating germ cells were essential for conferring longevity. Steroid hormone signaling and the FOXO transcription factor DAF-16 were required for longevity associated with cell cycle inhibition. Furthermore, we discovered that SKN-1 (ortholog of mammalian Nrf proteins) activates protective gene expression and induces longevity when cell cycle genes are inactivated. We conclude that both, germline absence and inhibition through impairment of cell cycle machinery results in longevity through similar pathways. In addition, our studies suggest further roles of cell cycle genes beyond cell cycle progression and support the recently described connection of SKN-1/Nrf to signals deriving from the germline. PMID:27668945

  2. Physical Factors Correlate to Microbial Community Structure and Nitrogen Cycling Gene Abundance in a Nitrate Fed Eutrophic Lagoon

    PubMed Central

    Highton, Matthew P.; Roosa, Stéphanie; Crawshaw, Josie; Schallenberg, Marc; Morales, Sergio E.

    2016-01-01

    Nitrogenous run-off from farmed pastures contributes to the eutrophication of Lake Ellesmere, a large shallow lagoon/lake on the east coast of New Zealand. Tributaries periodically deliver high loads of nitrate to the lake which likely affect microbial communities therein. We hypothesized that a nutrient gradient would form from the potential sources (tributaries) creating a disturbance resulting in changes in microbial community structure. To test this we first determined the existence of such a gradient but found only a weak nitrogen (TN) and phosphorous gradient (DRP). Changes in microbial communities were determined by measuring functional potential (quantification of nitrogen cycling genes via nifH, nirS, nosZI, and nosZII using qPCR), potential activity (via denitrification enzyme activity), as well as using changes in total community (via 16S rRNA gene amplicon sequencing). Our results demonstrated that changes in microbial communities at a phylogenetic (relative abundance) and functional level (proportion of the microbial community carrying nifH and nosZI genes) were most strongly associated with physical gradients (e.g., lake depth, sediment grain size, sediment porosity) and not nutrient concentrations. Low nitrate influx at the time of sampling is proposed as a factor contributing to the observed patterns. PMID:27826296

  3. The molecular basis of carcinogenesis: understanding the cell cycle clock.

    PubMed

    Weinberg, R A

    1996-06-01

    The cell cycle clock is the central controller of cell proliferation that governs the progress of the cell through its growth cycle, its exit from the active cycle, and its decision to differentiate. Components of the clock are found to be functioning in an aberrant fashion in many types of malignancies. Notable among these is the retinoblastoma protein, pRB, which acts to restrain proliferation in normal cells and suffers inactivation in many types of tumour cells. Its activity is controlled by D-type cyclins in various cell types. We have deleted one of these cyclins--cyclin D1--from the mouse germline and find that its absence leads to a limited range of defects including hypoplastic retinae and the inability of the mammary epithelium to respond to pregnancy-associated hormonal stimulation. Cyclin D1 is overexpressed in many human breast cancers, pointing to a highly specific association of this cell cycle clock component with mammary cell proliferation.

  4. Cell cycle analysis by flow cytometry: principles and applications.

    PubMed

    Jayat, C; Ratinaud, M H

    1993-01-01

    Numerous flow cytometric analyses are based on DNA content studies. We have considered firstly monoparametric cell cycle analyses, which only take DNA content into account, but are sometimes of limited interest. Then, we have presented multiparametric analyses, which can be used to improve cycle phase identification by taking simultaneously into account DNA and other cellular components, or by considering some events occurring during cell cycle. Finally, we have discussed monoparametric and multiparametric cell cycle analysis interest in various application fields, particularly in pharmacology, toxicology, tumoral pathology and higher plant system studies.

  5. Cell shape, cytoskeletal mechanics, and cell cycle control in angiogenesis

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Ingber, D. E.; Prusty, D.; Sun, Z.; Betensky, H.; Wang, N.

    1995-01-01

    Capillary endothelial cells can be switched between growth and differentiation by altering cell-extracellular matrix interactions and thereby, modulating cell shape. Studies were carried out to determine when cell shape exerts its growth-regulatory influence during cell cycle progression and to explore the role of cytoskeletal structure and mechanics in this control mechanism. When G0-synchronized cells were cultured in basic fibroblast growth factor (FGF)-containing defined medium on dishes coated with increasing densities of fibronectin or a synthetic integrin ligand (RGD-containing peptide), cell spreading, nuclear extension, and DNA synthesis all increased in parallel. To determine the minimum time cells must be adherent and spread on extracellular matrix (ECM) to gain entry into S phase, cells were removed with trypsin or induced to retract using cytochalasin D at different times after plating. Both approaches revealed that cells must remain extended for approximately 12-15 h and hence, most of G1, in order to enter S phase. After this restriction point was passed, normally 'anchorage-dependent' endothelial cells turned on DNA synthesis even when round and in suspension. The importance of actin-containing microfilaments in shape-dependent growth control was confirmed by culturing cells in the presence of cytochalasin D (25-1000 ng ml-1): dose-dependent inhibition of cell spreading, nuclear extension, and DNA synthesis resulted. In contrast, induction of microtubule disassembly using nocodazole had little effect on cell or nuclear spreading and only partially inhibited DNA synthesis. Interestingly, combination of nocodazole with a suboptimal dose of cytochalasin D (100 ng ml-1) resulted in potent inhibition of both spreading and growth, suggesting that microtubules are redundant structural elements which can provide critical load-bearing functions when microfilaments are partially compromised. Similar synergism between nocodazole and cytochalasin D was observed

  6. Genetic instability in cancer cells by impaired cell cycle checkpoints.

    PubMed

    Nakanishi, Makoto; Shimada, Midori; Niida, Hiroyuki

    2006-10-01

    Cells continuously encounter DNA damage caused either by damaging agents, including oxygen radicals and DNA replication errors caused by stalled replication forks, or by extracellular environments such as ultraviolet or ionizing irradiation. Such DNA damage poses a great threat to genome stability, potentially leading to loss or amplification of chromosome activity, which may result in cellular senescence, cancer or apoptosis. The DNA damage checkpoints coordinate an arrest in cell cycle progression with the DNA repair process, suppressing either mitotic catastrophe or proliferation of cells with damaged DNA. Numerous key players have been identified in terms of damage sensor proteins, transducer kinases and effectors, but their coordination and interconnectedness in damage control have only recently become evident. In this review, we discuss changes in chromatin structure, recruitment of mediator proteins and activation of transducer kinases in response to DNA damage. These cellular responses are important for determining the potential effects of current cancer therapies in terms of toxicity and efficacy.

  7. Engineering microbial fuels cells: recent patents and new directions.

    PubMed

    Biffinger, Justin C; Ringeisen, Bradley R

    2008-01-01

    Fundamental research into how microbes generate electricity within microbial fuel cells (MFCs) has far outweighed the practical application and large scale development of microbial energy harvesting devices. MFCs are considered alternatives to standard commercial polymer electrolyte membrane (PEM) fuel cell technology because the fuel supply does not need to be purified, ambient operating temperatures are maintained with biologically compatible materials, and the biological catalyst is self-regenerating. The generation of electricity during wastewater treatment using MFCs may profoundly affect the approach to anaerobic treatment technologies used in wastewater treatment as a result of developing this energy harvesting technology. However, the materials and engineering designs for MFCs were identical to commercial fuel cells until 2003. Compared to commercial fuel cells, MFCs will remain underdeveloped as long as low power densities are generated from the best systems. The variety of designs for MFCs has expanded rapidly in the last five years in the literature, but the patent protection has lagged behind. This review will cover recent and important patents relating to MFC designs and progress.

  8. Osteoprotegerin Regulates Pancreatic β-Cell Homeostasis upon Microbial Invasion

    PubMed Central

    Kuroda, Yukiko; Maruyama, Kenta; Fujii, Hideki; Sugawara, Isamu; Ko, Shigeru B. H.; Yasuda, Hisataka; Matsui, Hidenori; Matsuo, Koichi

    2016-01-01

    Osteoprotegerin (OPG), a decoy receptor for receptor activator of NF-κB ligand (RANKL), antagonizes RANKL’s osteoclastogenic function in bone. We previously demonstrated that systemic administration of lipopolysaccharide (LPS) to mice elevates OPG levels and reduces RANKL levels in peripheral blood. Here, we show that mice infected with Salmonella, Staphylococcus, Mycobacteria or influenza virus also show elevated serum OPG levels. We then asked whether OPG upregulation following microbial invasion had an effect outside of bone. To do so, we treated mice with LPS and observed OPG production in pancreas, especially in β-cells of pancreatic islets. Insulin release following LPS administration was enhanced in mice lacking OPG, suggesting that OPG inhibits insulin secretion under acute inflammatory conditions. Consistently, treatment of MIN6 pancreatic β-cells with OPG decreased their insulin secretion following glucose stimulation in the presence of LPS. Finally, our findings suggest that LPS-induced OPG upregulation is mediated in part by activator protein (AP)-1 family transcription factors, particularly Fos proteins. Overall, we report that acute microbial infection elevates serum OPG, which maintains β-cell homeostasis by restricting glucose-stimulated insulin secretion, possibly preventing microbe-induced exhaustion of β-cell secretory capacity. PMID:26751951

  9. Design and development of synthetic microbial platform cells for bioenergy

    PubMed Central

    Lee, Sang Jun; Lee, Sang-Jae; Lee, Dong-Woo

    2013-01-01

    The finite reservation of fossil fuels accelerates the necessity of development of renewable energy sources. Recent advances in synthetic biology encompassing systems biology and metabolic engineering enable us to engineer and/or create tailor made microorganisms to produce alternative biofuels for the future bio-era. For the efficient transformation of biomass to bioenergy, microbial cells need to be designed and engineered to maximize the performance of cellular metabolisms for the production of biofuels during energy flow. Toward this end, two different conceptual approaches have been applied for the development of platform cell factories: forward minimization and reverse engineering. From the context of naturally minimized genomes,non-essential energy-consuming pathways and/or related gene clusters could be progressively deleted to optimize cellular energy status for bioenergy production. Alternatively, incorporation of non-indigenous parts and/or modules including biomass-degrading enzymes, carbon uptake transporters, photosynthesis, CO2 fixation, and etc. into chassis microorganisms allows the platform cells to gain novel metabolic functions for bioenergy. This review focuses on the current progress in synthetic biology-aided pathway engineering in microbial cells and discusses its impact on the production of sustainable bioenergy. PMID:23626588

  10. Design and development of synthetic microbial platform cells for bioenergy.

    PubMed

    Lee, Sang Jun; Lee, Sang-Jae; Lee, Dong-Woo

    2013-01-01

    The finite reservation of fossil fuels accelerates the necessity of development of renewable energy sources. Recent advances in synthetic biology encompassing systems biology and metabolic engineering enable us to engineer and/or create tailor made microorganisms to produce alternative biofuels for the future bio-era. For the efficient transformation of biomass to bioenergy, microbial cells need to be designed and engineered to maximize the performance of cellular metabolisms for the production of biofuels during energy flow. Toward this end, two different conceptual approaches have been applied for the development of platform cell factories: forward minimization and reverse engineering. From the context of naturally minimized genomes,non-essential energy-consuming pathways and/or related gene clusters could be progressively deleted to optimize cellular energy status for bioenergy production. Alternatively, incorporation of non-indigenous parts and/or modules including biomass-degrading enzymes, carbon uptake transporters, photosynthesis, CO2 fixation, and etc. into chassis microorganisms allows the platform cells to gain novel metabolic functions for bioenergy. This review focuses on the current progress in synthetic biology-aided pathway engineering in microbial cells and discusses its impact on the production of sustainable bioenergy.

  11. Life cycle testing of sodium/sulfur satellite battery cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Flake, Richard A.

    Test results on sodium sulfur cells developed presently by the Air Force for NaS rechargeable batteries for baseload power applications are summarized. Cycle life data are presented on fourteen cells, some of which have accumulated more than 1900 days on test and/or more than 6000 cycles. Results demonstrated cycle life times to be sufficient for use on satellites in high-altitude orbits.

  12. Characteristics and Behavior of Cycled Aged Lithium Ion Cells

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2010-01-01

    service cycle and provide the cornerstone for safety analysis. 18650 Cells with representative chemistry of cells contained in current Army procured...their relevance to this effort warrants inclusion. 1-3 EXPERIMENTAL Representative 18650 cells were cycled at different rates and environmental...conditions. The 18650 chemistry used in this effort is a LiCoO2 lithium ion electrochemical cell. The bulk of this effort was conducted with 1.5 Amp-hr

  13. From position-specific isotope labeling towards soil fluxomics: a novel toolbox to assess the microbial impact on biogeochemical cycles

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Apostel, C.; Dippold, M. A.; Kuzyakov, Y.

    2015-12-01

    Understanding the microbial impact on C and nutrient cycles is one of the most important challenges in terrestrial biogeochemistry. Transformation of low molecular weight organic substances (LMWOS) is a key step in all biogeochemical cycles because 1) all high molecular substances pass the LMWOS pool during their degradation and 2) only LMWOS can be taken up by microorganisms intact. Thus, the transformations of LMWOS are dominated by biochemical pathways of the soil microorganisms. Thus, understanding fluxes and transformations in soils requires a detailed knowledge on the microbial metabolic network and its control mechanism. Tracing C fate in soil by isotopes became on of the most applied and promising biogeochemistry tools but studies were nearly exclusively based on uniformly labeled substances. However, such tracers do not allow the differentiation of the intact use of the initial substances from its transformation to metabolites. The novel tool of position-specific labeling enables to trace molecule atoms separately and thus to determine the cleavage of molecules - a prerequisite for metabolic tracing. Position-specific labeling of basic metabolites and quantification of isotope incorporation in CO2 and bulk soil enabled following the basic metabolic pathways of microorganisms. However, the combination of position-specific 13C labeling with compound-specific isotope analysis of microbial biomarkers and metabolites like phospholipid fatty acids (PLFA) or amino sugars revealed new insights into the soil fluxome: First, it enables tracing specific anabolic pathways in diverse microbial communities in soils e.g. carbon starvation pathways versus pathways reflecting microbial growth. Second, it allows identification of specific pathways of individual functional microbial groups in soils in situ. Tracing metabolic pathways and understanding their regulating factors are crucial for soil C fluxomics i.e. the unravaling of the complex network of C transformations

  14. Cell mass and cell cycle dynamics of an asynchronous budding yeast population: experimental observations, flow cytometry data analysis, and multi-scale modeling.

    PubMed

    Lencastre Fernandes, Rita; Carlquist, Magnus; Lundin, Luisa; Heins, Anna-Lena; Dutta, Abhishek; Sørensen, Søren J; Jensen, Anker D; Nopens, Ingmar; Lantz, Anna Eliasson; Gernaey, Krist V

    2013-03-01

    Despite traditionally regarded as identical, cells in a microbial cultivation present a distribution of phenotypic traits, forming a heterogeneous cell population. Moreover, the degree of heterogeneity is notably enhanced by changes in micro-environmental conditions. A major development in experimental single-cell studies has taken place in the last decades. It has however not been fully accompanied by similar contributions within data analysis and mathematical modeling. Indeed, literature reporting, for example, quantitative analyses of experimental single-cell observations and validation of model predictions for cell property distributions against experimental data is scarce. This study focuses on the experimental and mathematical description of the dynamics of cell size and cell cycle position distributions, of a population of Saccharomyces cerevisiae, in response to the substrate consumption observed during batch cultivation. The good agreement between the proposed multi-scale model (a population balance model [PBM] coupled to an unstructured model) and experimental data (both the overall physiology and cell size and cell cycle distributions) indicates that a mechanistic model is a suitable tool for describing the microbial population dynamics in a bioreactor. This study therefore contributes towards the understanding of the development of heterogeneous populations during microbial cultivations. More generally, it consists of a step towards a paradigm change in the study and description of cell cultivations, where average cell behaviors observed experimentally now are interpreted as a potential joint result of various co-existing single-cell behaviors, rather than a unique response common to all cells in the cultivation.

  15. Microbial electricity generation in rice paddy fields: recent advances and perspectives in rhizosphere microbial fuel cells.

    PubMed

    Kouzuma, Atsushi; Kaku, Nobuo; Watanabe, Kazuya

    2014-12-01

    Microbial fuel cells (MFCs) are devices that use living microbes for the conversion of organic matter into electricity. MFC systems can be applied to the generation of electricity at water/sediment interfaces in the environment, such as bay areas, wetlands, and rice paddy fields. Using these systems, electricity generation in paddy fields as high as ∼80 mW m(-2) (based on the projected anode area) has been demonstrated, and evidence suggests that rhizosphere microbes preferentially utilize organic exudates from rice roots for generating electricity. Phylogenetic and metagenomic analyses have been conducted to identify the microbial species and catabolic pathways that are involved in the conversion of root exudates into electricity, suggesting the importance of syntrophic interactions. In parallel, pot cultures of rice and other aquatic plants have been used for rhizosphere MFC experiments under controlled laboratory conditions. The findings from these studies have demonstrated the potential of electricity generation for mitigating methane emission from the rhizosphere. Notably, however, the presence of large amounts of organics in the rhizosphere drastically reduces the effect of electricity generation on methane production. Further studies are necessary to evaluate the potential of these systems for mitigating methane emission from rice paddy fields. We suggest that paddy-field MFCs represent a promising approach for harvesting latent energy of the natural world.

  16. Ammonia inhibition and microbial adaptation in continuous single-chamber microbial fuel cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kim, Hyun-Woo; Nam, Joo-Youn; Shin, Hang-Sik

    2011-08-01

    Here, we report that a continuous single-chamber microbial fuel cell (MFC) is applicable to wastewaters containing a high nitrogen concentration using a process of adaptation. Continuous experiments are conducted to investigate the inhibitory effect of total ammonia nitrogen (TAN) on the MFC using influents with various concentrations of TAN ranged from 84 to 10,000 mg N L-1. As the TAN concentration increases up to 3500 mg N L-1, the maximum power density remains at 6.1 W m-3. However, as the concentration further increases, TAN significantly inhibits the maximum power density, which is reduced at saturation to 1.4 W m-3 at 10,000 mg N L-1. We confirm that the adapted electrical performance of a continuous MFC can generate approximately 44% higher power density than the conductivity control. A comparative study reveals that the power densities obtained from a continuous MFC can sustain 7-fold higher TAN concentration than that of previous batch MFCs. TAN removal efficiencies are limited to less than 10%, whereas acetate removal efficiencies remain as high as 93-99%. The increased threshold TAN of the continuous MFC suggests that microbial acclimation in a continuous MFC can allow the electrochemical functioning of the anode-attached bacteria to resist ammonia inhibition.

  17. Performance and microbial ecology of air-cathode microbial fuel cells with layered electrode assemblies.

    PubMed

    Butler, Caitlyn S; Nerenberg, Robert

    2010-05-01

    Microbial fuel cells (MFCs) can be built with layered electrode assemblies, where the anode, proton exchange membrane (PEM), and cathode are pressed into a single unit. We studied the performance and microbial community structure of MFCs with layered assemblies, addressing the effect of materials and oxygen crossover on the community structure. Four MFCs with layered assemblies were constructed using Nafion or Ultrex PEMs and a plain carbon cloth electrode or a cathode with an oxygen-resistant polytetrafluoroethylene diffusion layer. The MFC with Nafion PEM and cathode diffusion layer achieved the highest power density, 381 mW/m(2) (20 W/m(3)). The rates of oxygen diffusion from cathode to anode were three times higher in the MFCs with plain cathodes compared to those with diffusion-layer cathodes. Microsensor studies revealed little accumulation of oxygen within the anode cloth. However, the abundance of bacteria known to use oxygen as an electron acceptor, but not known to have exoelectrogenic activity, was greater in MFCs with plain cathodes. The MFCs with diffusion-layer cathodes had high abundance of exoelectrogenic bacteria within the genus Geobacter. This work suggests that cathode materials can significantly influence oxygen crossover and the relative abundance of exoelectrogenic bacteria on the anode, while PEM materials have little influence on anode community structure. Our results show that oxygen crossover can significantly decrease the performance of air-cathode MFCs with layered assemblies, and therefore limiting crossover may be of particular importance for these types of MFCs.

  18. Comparative analysis of microbial community between different cathode systems of microbial fuel cells for denitrification.

    PubMed

    Li, Chao; Xu, Ming; Lu, Yi; Fang, Fang; Cao, Jiashun

    2016-01-01

    Two types of cathodic biofilm in microbial fuel cells (MFC) were established for comparison on their performance and microbial communities. Complete autotrophic simultaneous nitrification and denitrification (SND) without organics addition was achieved in nitrifying-MFC (N-MFC) with a total nitrogen (TN) removal rate of 0.35 mg/(L·h), which was even higher than that in denitrifying-MFC (D-MFC) at same TN level. Integrated denaturing gradient gel electrophoresis analysis based on both 16S rRNA and nirK genes showed that Alpha-, Gammaproteobacteria were the main denitrifier communities. Some potential autotrophic denitrifying bacteria which can use electrons and reducing power from cathodes, such as Shewanella oneidensis, Shewanella loihica, Pseudomonas aeruginosa, Starkeya novella and Rhodopseudomonas palustris were identified and selectively enriched on cathode biofilms. Further, relative abundance of denitrifying bacteria characterized by nirK/16S ratios was much higher in biofilm than suspended sludge according to real-time polymerase chain reaction. The highest enrichment efficiency for denitrifiers was obtained in N-MFC cathode biofilms, which confirmed autotrophic denitrifying bacteria enrichment is the key factor for a D-MFC system.

  19. Interactions Between Microbial Iron Reduction and Metal Geochemistry: Effect of Redox Cycling on Transition Metal Speciation in Iron Bearing Sediments

    SciTech Connect

    D. Craig Cooper; Flynn W. Picardal; Aaron J. Coby

    2006-02-01

    Microbial iron reduction is an important biogeochemical process that can affect metal geochemistry in sediments through direct and indirect mechanisms. With respect to Fe(III) (hydr)oxides bearing sorbed divalent metals, recent reports have indicated that (1) microbial reduction of goethite/ferrihydrite mixtures preferentially removes ferrihydrite, (2) this process can incorporate previously sorbed Zn(II) into an authigenic crystalline phase that is insoluble in 0.5 M HCl, (3) this new phase is probably goethite, and (4) the presence of nonreducible minerals can inhibit this transformation. This study demonstrates that a range of sorbed transition metals can be selectively sequestered into a 0.5 M HCl insoluble phase and that the process can be stimulated through sequential steps of microbial iron reduction and air oxidation. Microbial reduction experiments with divalent Cd, Co, Mn, Ni, Pb, and Zn indicate that all metals save Mn experienced some sequestration, with the degree of metal incorporation into the 0.5 M HCl insoluble phase correlating positively with crystalline ionic radius at coordination number = 6. Redox cycling experiments with Zn adsorbed to synthetic goethite/ferrihydrite or iron-bearing natural sediments indicate that redox cycling from iron reducing to iron oxidizing conditions sequesters more Zn within authigenic minerals than microbial iron reduction alone. In addition, the process is more effective in goethite/ferrihydrite mixtures than in iron-bearing natural sediments. Microbial reduction alone resulted in a ~3× increase in 0.5 M HCl insoluble Zn and increased aqueous Zn (Zn-aq) in goethite/ferrihydrite, but did not significantly affect Zn speciation in natural sediments. Redox cycling enhanced the Zn sequestration by ~12% in both goethite/ferrihydrite and natural sediments and reduced Zn-aq to levels equal to the uninoculated control in goethite/ferrihydrite and less than the uninoculated control in natural sediments. These data suggest

  20. Size and Carbon Content of Sub-seafloor Microbial Cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Braun, S.; Morono, Y.; Littmann, S.; Jørgensen, B. B.; Lomstein, B. A.

    2015-12-01

    Into the seafloor, a radical decline in nutrient and energy availability poses strong metabolic demands to any residing life. However, a sedimentary microbial ecosystem seems to maintain itself close to what we understand to be the energetic limit of life. Since a complex sediment matrix is interfering with the analysis of whole cells and sub-cellular compounds such as cell wall and membrane molecules, little is known about the physiological properties of cells in the deep biosphere. Here we focus on the size and carbon content of cells from a 90-m sediment drill core retrieved in October 2013 at Landsort Deep, Baltic Sea, in 437 meters water depth. To determine their shape and volume, cells were separated from the sediment matrix by multi-layer density centrifugation and visualized via fluorescence microscopy (FM), scanning electron microscopy (SEM), and stimulated emission depletion microscopy (STED). Total cell-carbon was calculated from amino acid-carbon, which was analyzed by high-performance liquid chromatography after cells had additionally been purified by fluorescence activated cell sorting (FACS). Cell-carbon turnover times were estimated using an amino acid racemization model that is based on the built-in molecular clock of aspartic acid, which due to racemization alternates between the D- and L-isomeric configurations over timescales of thousands of years at low in-situ temperatures (≈4˚C). We find that the majority of microbial cells in the sediment have coccoid or rod-shaped morphology, and that absolute values for cell volume are strongly dependent on the method used, spanning three orders of magnitude from approximately 0.001 to 1 µm3 for both coccoid and rod-shaped cells. From the surface to the deepest sample measured (≈60 mbsf), cell volume decreases by an order of magnitude, and carbon content is in the lower range (<20 fg C cell-1) of what has been reported in the literature as conversion factors. Cell-carbon is turned over approximately

  1. A microbial arsenic cycle in sediments of an acidic mine impoundment: Herman Pit, Clear Lake, California

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Blum, Jodi S.; McCann, Shelley; Bennett, S.; Miller, Laurence G.; Stolz, J. R.; Stoneburner, B.; Saltikov, C.; Oremland, Ronald S.

    2015-01-01

    The involvement of prokaryotes in the redox reactions of arsenic occurring between its +5 [arsenate; As(V)] and +3 [arsenite; As(III)] oxidation states has been well established. Most research to date has focused upon circum-neutral pH environments (e.g., freshwater or estuarine sediments) or arsenic-rich “extreme” environments like hot springs and soda lakes. In contrast, relatively little work has been conducted in acidic environments. With this in mind we conducted experiments with sediments taken from the Herman Pit, an acid mine drainage impoundment of a former mercury (cinnabar) mine. Due to the large adsorptive capacity of the abundant Fe(III)-rich minerals, we were unable to initially detect in solution either As(V) or As(III) added to the aqueous phase of live sediment slurries or autoclaved controls, although the former consumed added electron donors (i.e., lactate, acetate, hydrogen), while the latter did not. This prompted us to conduct further experiments with diluted slurries using the live materials from the first incubation as inoculum. In these experiments we observed reduction of As(V) to As(III) under anoxic conditions and reduction rates were enhanced by addition of electron donors. We also observed oxidation of As(III) to As(V) in oxic slurries as well as in anoxic slurries amended with nitrate. We noted an acid-tolerant trend for sediment slurries in the cases of As(III) oxidation (aerobic and anaerobic) as well as for anaerobic As(V) reduction. These observations indicate the presence of a viable microbial arsenic redox cycle in the sediments of this extreme environment, a result reinforced by the successful amplification of arsenic functional genes (aioA, and arrA) from these materials.

  2. Constraining carbon sources and cycling of endolithic microbial communities in the Atacama Desert

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ziolkowski, L. A.; Slater, G. F.; Davila, A.; Wierzchos, J.

    2010-12-01

    The Atacama Desert, one of the driest places on Earth, is considered a suitable analog for the extremely arid, oxidizing conditions on the surface of Mars. Recent observations suggest the presence of evaporitic deposits on the surface of Mars, such as those found in the Atacama. Halites in the Atacama have been shown to be hygroscopic and are colonized by photosynthetic microbes. While there is considerable evidence for the decrease in abundance and diversity of microbes closer to the hyper-arid core of the Atacama, experimental studies have thus far have yet to estimate the sources of carbon to these communities and the rate at which they cycle. To address these questions, we characterized the isotopic composition (13C and 14C) microbial community biomarkers from four distinct sites in the Atacama. Sites ranged from halites in the hyper-arid core (Yungay, Salar Grande) to volcanic rock and gypsum near the Monturaqui Crater. Our analysis of the phospholipids fatty acids (PLFA) and glycolipid fatty acid (GLFA) methyl esters of the endoliths agreed with previous studies: the abundance and diversity of microbes decreases approaching the hyper-arid core. The total PLFA and GLFA concentrations were lower at Yungay than Salar Grande and higher in the gypsum and volcanic rock samples. Changes in the mole percentage distribution of the PLFA and GLFA illustrated that the endolithic communities inhabiting the volcanic rock and gypsum were more complex than those inhabiting the halites. ∂13C of both PLFA and GLFA showed that non-halite lipids were less depleted in 13C than halite-lipids. This suggested a difference in carbon source or cycling. The 14C content of PLFA and GLFA varied by up to 250 per mil. Endolith PLFA and GLFA from the gypsum had radiocarbon signatures comparable to the modern atmosphere, which suggests that the predominant source of carbon to the system is the modern atmosphere and that lipids are cycling rapidly in this system. However, at the other three

  3. Hydrophobic substances induce water stress in microbial cells

    PubMed Central

    Bhaganna, Prashanth; Volkers, Rita J. M.; Bell, Andrew N. W.; Kluge, Kathrin; Timson, David J.; McGrath, John W.; Ruijssenaars, Harald J.; Hallsworth, John E.

    2010-01-01

    Summary Ubiquitous noxious hydrophobic substances, such as hydrocarbons, pesticides and diverse industrial chemicals, stress biological systems and thereby affect their ability to mediate biosphere functions like element and energy cycling vital to biosphere health. Such chemically diverse compounds may have distinct toxic activities for cellular systems; they may also share a common mechanism of stress induction mediated by their hydrophobicity. We hypothesized that the stressful effects of, and cellular adaptations to, hydrophobic stressors operate at the level of water : macromolecule interactions. Here, we present evidence that: (i) hydrocarbons reduce structural interactions within and between cellular macromolecules, (ii) organic compatible solutes – metabolites that protect against osmotic and chaotrope‐induced stresses – ameliorate this effect, (iii) toxic hydrophobic substances induce a potent form of water stress in macromolecular and cellular systems, and (iv) the stress mechanism of, and cellular responses to, hydrophobic substances are remarkably similar to those associated with chaotrope‐induced water stress. These findings suggest that it may be possible to devise new interventions for microbial processes in both natural environments and industrial reactors to expand microbial tolerance of hydrophobic substances, and hence the biotic windows for such processes. PMID:21255365

  4. Regulatory pathways coordinating cell cycle progression in early Xenopus development.

    PubMed

    Gotoh, Tetsuya; Villa, Linda M; Capelluto, Daniel G S; Finkielstein, Carla V

    2011-01-01

    The African clawed frog, Xenopus laevis, is used extensively as a model organism for studying both cell development and cell cycle regulation. For over 20 years now, this model organism has contributed to answering fundamental questions concerning the mechanisms that underlie cell cycle transitions--the cellular components that synthesize, modify, repair, and degrade nucleic acids and proteins, the signaling pathways that allow cells to communicate, and the regulatory pathways that lead to selective expression of subsets of genes. In addition, the remarkable simplicity of the Xenopus early cell cycle allows for tractable manipulation and dissection of the basic components driving each transition. In this organism, early cell divisions are characterized by rapid cycles alternating phases of DNA synthesis and division. The post-blastula stages incorporate gap phases, lengthening progression, and allowing more time for DNA repair. Various cyclin/Cdk complexes are differentially expressed during the early cycles with orderly progression being driven by both the combined action of cyclin synthesis and degradation and the appropriate selection of specific substrates by their Cdk components. Like other multicellular organisms, chief developmental events in early Xenopus embryogenesis coincide with profound remodeling of the cell cycle, suggesting that cell proliferation and differentiation events are linked and coordinated through crosstalk mechanisms acting on signaling pathways involving the expression of cell cycle control genes.

  5. Microbial contributions to coupled arsenic and sulfur cycling in the acid-sulfide hot spring Champagne Pool, New Zealand.

    PubMed

    Hug, Katrin; Maher, William A; Stott, Matthew B; Krikowa, Frank; Foster, Simon; Moreau, John W

    2014-01-01

    Acid-sulfide hot springs are analogs of early Earth geothermal systems where microbial metal(loid) resistance likely first evolved. Arsenic is a metalloid enriched in the acid-sulfide hot spring Champagne Pool (Waiotapu, New Zealand). Arsenic speciation in Champagne Pool follows reaction paths not yet fully understood with respect to biotic contributions and coupling to biogeochemical sulfur cycling. Here we present quantitative arsenic speciation from Champagne Pool, finding arsenite dominant in the pool, rim and outflow channel (55-75% total arsenic), and dithio- and trithioarsenates ubiquitously present as 18-25% total arsenic. In the outflow channel, dimethylmonothioarsenate comprised ≤9% total arsenic, while on the outflow terrace thioarsenates were present at 55% total arsenic. We also quantified sulfide, thiosulfate, sulfate and elemental sulfur, finding sulfide and sulfate as major species in the pool and outflow terrace, respectively. Elemental sulfur concentration reached a maximum at the terrace. Phylogenetic analysis of 16S rRNA genes from metagenomic sequencing revealed the dominance of Sulfurihydrogenibium at all sites and an increased archaeal population at the rim and outflow channel. Several phylotypes were found closely related to known sulfur- and sulfide-oxidizers, as well as sulfur- and sulfate-reducers. Bioinformatic analysis revealed genes underpinning sulfur redox transformations, consistent with sulfur speciation data, and illustrating a microbial role in sulfur-dependent transformation of arsenite to thioarsenate. Metagenomic analysis also revealed genes encoding for arsenate reductase at all sites, reflecting the ubiquity of thioarsenate and a need for microbial arsenate resistance despite anoxic conditions. Absence of the arsenite oxidase gene, aio, at all sites suggests prioritization of arsenite detoxification over coupling to energy conservation. Finally, detection of methyl arsenic in the outflow channel, in conjunction with

  6. Microbial contributions to coupled arsenic and sulfur cycling in the acid-sulfide hot spring Champagne Pool, New Zealand

    PubMed Central

    Hug, Katrin; Maher, William A.; Stott, Matthew B.; Krikowa, Frank; Foster, Simon; Moreau, John W.

    2014-01-01

    Acid-sulfide hot springs are analogs of early Earth geothermal systems where microbial metal(loid) resistance likely first evolved. Arsenic is a metalloid enriched in the acid-sulfide hot spring Champagne Pool (Waiotapu, New Zealand). Arsenic speciation in Champagne Pool follows reaction paths not yet fully understood with respect to biotic contributions and coupling to biogeochemical sulfur cycling. Here we present quantitative arsenic speciation from Champagne Pool, finding arsenite dominant in the pool, rim and outflow channel (55–75% total arsenic), and dithio- and trithioarsenates ubiquitously present as 18–25% total arsenic. In the outflow channel, dimethylmonothioarsenate comprised ≤9% total arsenic, while on the outflow terrace thioarsenates were present at 55% total arsenic. We also quantified sulfide, thiosulfate, sulfate and elemental sulfur, finding sulfide and sulfate as major species in the pool and outflow terrace, respectively. Elemental sulfur concentration reached a maximum at the terrace. Phylogenetic analysis of 16S rRNA genes from metagenomic sequencing revealed the dominance of Sulfurihydrogenibium at all sites and an increased archaeal population at the rim and outflow channel. Several phylotypes were found closely related to known sulfur- and sulfide-oxidizers, as well as sulfur- and sulfate-reducers. Bioinformatic analysis revealed genes underpinning sulfur redox transformations, consistent with sulfur speciation data, and illustrating a microbial role in sulfur-dependent transformation of arsenite to thioarsenate. Metagenomic analysis also revealed genes encoding for arsenate reductase at all sites, reflecting the ubiquity of thioarsenate and a need for microbial arsenate resistance despite anoxic conditions. Absence of the arsenite oxidase gene, aio, at all sites suggests prioritization of arsenite detoxification over coupling to energy conservation. Finally, detection of methyl arsenic in the outflow channel, in conjunction with

  7. Microbial solar cells: applying photosynthetic and electrochemically active organisms.

    PubMed

    Strik, David P B T B; Timmers, Ruud A; Helder, Marjolein; Steinbusch, Kirsten J J; Hamelers, Hubertus V M; Buisman, Cees J N

    2011-01-01

    Microbial solar cells (MSCs) are recently developed technologies that utilize solar energy to produce electricity or chemicals. MSCs use photoautotrophic microorganisms or higher plants to harvest solar energy, and use electrochemically active microorganisms in the bioelectrochemical system to generate electrical current. Here, we review the principles and performance of various MSCs in an effort to identify the most promising systems, as well as the bottlenecks and potential solutions, for "real-life" MSC applications. We present an outlook on future applications based on the intrinsic advantages of MSCs, specifically highlighting how these living energy systems can facilitate the development of an electricity-producing green roof.

  8. Application of living microbial cells entrapped with synthetic resin prepolymers.

    PubMed

    Fukui, S; Tanaka, A

    1989-12-01

    Living and growing microbial cells were immobilized by entrapping in synthetic resin gels prepared from their prepolymers, and used in the production of various useful substances. The production of the desired metabolites and also both the activity and the stability of the catalytic systems were seriously affected by the physico-chemical properties of the prepolymers, and those of the resin gels subsequently formed, such as gel network, hydrophilicity-hydrophobicity balance and ionic nature, as well as by the type of bioreactors. Hydroxylation of steroids and production of antibiotics, polypeptides and other biologically active substances, and the effects of gel properties on them are discussed as examples.

  9. Multi-population model of a microbial electrolysis cell.

    PubMed

    Pinto, R P; Srinivasan, B; Escapa, A; Tartakovsky, B

    2011-06-01

    This work presents a multi-population dynamic model of a microbial electrolysis cell (MEC). The model describes the growth and metabolic activity of fermentative, electricigenic, methanogenic acetoclastic, and methanogenic hydrogenophilic microorganisms and is capable of simulating hydrogen production in a MEC fed with complex organic matter, such as wastewater. The model parameters were estimated with the experimental results obtained in continuous flow MECs fed with acetate or synthetic wastewater. Following successful model validation with an independent data set, the model was used to analyze and discuss the influence of applied voltage and organic load on hydrogen production and COD removal.

  10. Photosynthetic microbial fuel cells with positive light response.

    PubMed

    Zou, Yongjin; Pisciotta, John; Billmyre, R Blake; Baskakov, Ilia V

    2009-12-01

    The current study introduces an aerobic single-chamber photosynthetic microbial fuel cell (PMFC). Evaluation of PMFC performance using naturally growing fresh-water photosynthetic biofilm revealed a weak positive light response, that is, an increase in cell voltage upon illumination. When the PMFC anodes were coated with electrically conductive polymers, the rate of voltage increased and the amplitude of the light response improved significantly. The rapid immediate positive response to light was consistent with a mechanism postulating that the photosynthetic electron-transfer chain is the source of the electrons harvested on the anode surface. This mechanism is fundamentally different from the one exploited in previously designed anaerobic microbial fuel cells (MFCs), sediment MFCs, or anaerobic PMFCs, where the electrons are derived from the respiratory electron-transfer chain. The power densities produced in PMFCs were substantially lower than those that are currently reported for conventional MFC (0.95 mW/m(2) for polyaniline-coated and 1.3 mW/m(2) for polypyrrole-coated anodes). However, the PMFC did not depend on an organic substrate as an energy source and was powered only by light energy. Its operation was CO(2)-neutral and did not require buffers or exogenous electron transfer shuttles.

  11. Stacked microbial desalination cells to enhance water desalination efficiency.

    PubMed

    Chen, Xi; Xia, Xue; Liang, Peng; Cao, Xiaoxin; Sun, Haotian; Huang, Xia

    2011-03-15

    Microbial desalination cell (MDC) is a new method to obtain clean water from brackish water using electricity generated from organic matters by exoelectrogenic bacteria. Anions and cations, derived from salt solution filled in the desalination chamber between the anode and cathode, move to the anode and cathode chambers under the force of electrical field, respectively. On the basis of the primitive single-desalination-chambered MDC, stacked microbial desalination cells (SMDCs) were developed in order to promote the desalination rate in the present study. The effects of desalination chamber number and external resistance were investigated. Results showed that a remarkable increase in the total desalination rate (TDR) could be obtained by means of increasing the desalination cell number and reducing the external resistance, which caused the charge transfer efficiency increased since the SMDCs enabled more pairs of ions separated while one electron passed through the external circuit. The maximum TDR of 0.0252 g/h was obtained using a two-desalination-chambered SMDC with an external resistance of 10 Ω, which was 1.4 times that of single-desalination-chambered MDC. SMDCs proved to be an effective approach to increase the total water desalination rate if provided a proper desalination chamber number and external resistance.

  12. Environmental sensing of heavy metals through whole cell microbial biosensors: a synthetic biology approach.

    PubMed

    Bereza-Malcolm, Lara Tess; Mann, Gülay; Franks, Ashley Edwin

    2015-05-15

    Whole cell microbial biosensors are offering an alternative means for rapid, on-site heavy metal detection. Based in microorganisms, biosensing constructs are designed and constructed to produce both qualitative and quantitative outputs in response to heavy metal ions. Previous microbial biosensors designs are focused on single-input constructs; however, development of multiplexed systems is resulting in more flexible designs. The movement of microbial biosensors from laboratory based designs toward on-site, functioning heavy metal detectors has been hindered by the toxic nature of heavy metals, along with the lack of specificity of heavy metals promoter elements. Applying a synthetic biology approach with alternative microbial chassis may increase the robustness of microbial biosensors and mitigate these issues. Before full applications are achieved, further consideration has to be made regarding the risk and regulations of whole cell microbial biosensor use in the environment. To this end, a standard framework for future whole cell microbial biosensor design and use is proposed.

  13. Effects of Bromus tectorum invasion on microbial carbon and nitrogen cycling in two adjacent undisturbed arid grassland communities

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Schaeffer, Sean M.; Ziegler, Susan E.; Belnap, Jayne; Evans, R.D.

    2012-01-01

    Soil nitrogen (N) is an important component in maintaining ecosystem stability, and the introduction of non-native plants can alter N cycling by changing litter quality and quantity, nutrient uptake patterns, and soil food webs. Our goal was to determine the effects of Bromus tectorum (C3) invasion on soil microbial N cycling in adjacent non-invaded and invaded C3 and C4 native arid grasslands. We monitored resin-extractable N, plant and soil δ13C and δ15N, gross rates of inorganic N mineralization and consumption, and the quantity and isotopic composition of microbial phospholipid biomarkers. In invaded C3 communities, labile soil organic N and gross and net rates of soil N transformations increased, indicating an increase in overall microbial N cycling. In invaded C4 communities labile soil N stayed constant, but gross N flux rates increased. The δ13C of phospholipid biomarkers in invaded C4 communities showed that some portion of the soil bacterial population preferentially decomposed invader C3-derived litter over that from the native C4 species. Invasion in C4 grasslands also significantly decreased the proportion of fungal to bacterial phospholipid biomarkers. Different processes are occurring in response to B. tectorum invasion in each of these two native grasslands that: 1) alter the size of soil N pools, and/or 2) the activity of the microbial community. Both processes provide mechanisms for altering long-term N dynamics in these ecosystems and highlight how multiple mechanisms can lead to similar effects on ecosystem function, which may be important for the construction of future biogeochemical process models.

  14. The Cell Cycle: An Activity Using Paper Plates to Represent Time Spent in Phases of the Cell Cycle

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Scherer, Yvette D.

    2014-01-01

    In this activity, students are given the opportunity to combine skills in math and geometry for a biology lesson in the cell cycle. Students utilize the data they collect and analyze from an online onion-root-tip activity to create a paper-plate time clock representing a 24-hour cell cycle. By dividing the paper plate into appropriate phases of…

  15. Characterization of the Cell Surface Properties of Drinking Water Pathogens by Microbial Adhesion to Hydrocarbon and Electrophoretic Mobility Measurements

    EPA Science Inventory

    The surface characteristics of microbial cells directly influence their mobility and behavior within aqueous environments. The cell surface hydrophobicity (CSH) and electrophoretic mobility (EPM) of microbial cells impact a number of interactions and processes including aggregati...

  16. Effect of pre-acclimation of granular activated carbon on microbial electrolysis cell startup and performance.

    PubMed

    LaBarge, Nicole; Yilmazel, Yasemin Dilsad; Hong, Pei-Ying; Logan, Bruce E

    2017-02-01

    Microbial electrolysis cells (MECs) can generate methane by fixing carbon dioxide without using expensive catalysts, but the impact of acclimation procedures on subsequent performance has not been investigated. Granular activated carbon (GAC) was used to pre-enrich electrotrophic methanogenic communities, as GAC has been shown to stimulate direct transfer of electrons between different microbial species. MEC startup times using pre-acclimated GAC were improved compared to controls (without pre-acclimation or without GAC), and after three fed batch cycles methane generation rates were similar (P>0.4) for GAC acclimated to hydrogen (22±9.3nmolcm(-3)d(-1)), methanol (25±9.7nmolcm(-3)d(-1)), and a volatile fatty acid (VFA) mix (22±11nmolcm(-3)d(-1)). However, MECs started with GAC but no pre-acclimation had lower methane generation rates (13±4.1nmolcm(-3)d(-1)), and MECs without GAC had the lowest rates (0.7±0.8nmolcm(-3)d(-1) after cycle 2). Microbes previously found in methanogenic MECs, or previously shown to be capable of exocellular electron transfer, were enriched on the GAC. Pre-acclimation using GAC is therefore a simple approach to enrich electroactive communities, improve methane generation rates, and decrease startup times in MECs.

  17. Cell cycle-dependent induction of autophagy, mitophagy and reticulophagy.

    PubMed

    Tasdemir, Ezgi; Maiuri, M Chiara; Tajeddine, Nicolas; Vitale, Ilio; Criollo, Alfredo; Vicencio, José Miguel; Hickman, John A; Geneste, Olivier; Kroemer, Guido

    2007-09-15

    When added to cells, a variety of autophagy inducers that operate through distinct mechanisms and target different organelles for autophagic destruction (mitochondria in mitophagy, endoplasmic reticulum in reticulophagy) rarely induce autophagic vacuolization in more than 50% or the cells. Here we show that this heterogeneity may be explained by cell cycle-specific effects. The BH3 mimetic ABT737, lithium, rapamycin, tunicamycin or nutrient depletion stereotypically induce autophagy preferentially in the G(1) and S phases of the cell cycle, as determined by simultaneous monitoring of cell cycle markers and the cytoplasmic aggregation of GFP-LC3 in autophagic vacuoles. These results point to a hitherto neglected crosstalk between autophagic vacuolization and cell cycle regulation.

  18. Brucella abortus Cell Cycle and Infection Are Coordinated.

    PubMed

    De Bolle, Xavier; Crosson, Sean; Matroule, Jean-Yves; Letesson, Jean-Jacques

    2015-12-01

    Brucellae are facultative intracellular pathogens. The recent development of methods and genetically engineered strains allowed the description of cell-cycle progression of Brucella abortus, including unipolar growth and the ordered initiation of chromosomal replication. B. abortus cell-cycle progression is coordinated with intracellular trafficking in the endosomal compartments. Bacteria are first blocked at the G1 stage, growth and chromosome replication being resumed shortly before reaching the intracellular proliferation compartment. The control mechanisms of cell cycle are similar to those reported for the bacterium Caulobacter crescentus, and they are crucial for survival in the host cell. The development of single-cell analyses could also be applied to other bacterial pathogens to investigate their cell-cycle progression during infection.

  19. Flow cytometry methods for the study of cell-cycle parameters of planarian stem cells.

    PubMed

    Kang, Hara; Sánchez Alvarado, Alejandro

    2009-05-01

    Due to their characteristic inaccessibility and low numbers, little is known about the cell-cycle dynamics of most stem cells in vivo. A powerful, established methodology to study cell-cycle dynamics is flow cytometry, which is used routinely to study the cell-cycle dynamics of proliferating cells in vitro. Its use in heterogeneous mixtures of cells obtained from whole animals, however, is complicated by the relatively low abundance of cycling to non-cycling cells. We report on flow cytometric methods that take advantage of the abundance of proliferating stem cells in the planarian Schmidtea mediterranea. The optimized protocols allow us to measure cell-cycle dynamics and follow BrdU-labeled cells specifically in complex mixtures of cells. These methods expand on the growing toolkit being developed to study stem cell biology in planarians, and open the door to detailed cytometric studies of a collectively totipotent population of adult stem cells in vivo.

  20. Cycle life test. [of secondary spacecraft cells

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Harkness, J. D.

    1977-01-01

    Statistical information concerning cell performance characteristics and limitations of secondary spacecraft cells is presented. Weaknesses in cell design as well as battery weaknesses encountered in various satellite programs are reported. Emphasis is placed on improving the reliability of space batteries.

  1. Cell cycle control, checkpoint mechanisms, and genotoxic stress.

    PubMed Central

    Shackelford, R E; Kaufmann, W K; Paules, R S

    1999-01-01

    The ability of cells to maintain genomic integrity is vital for cell survival and proliferation. Lack of fidelity in DNA replication and maintenance can result in deleterious mutations leading to cell death or, in multicellular organisms, cancer. The purpose of this review is to discuss the known signal transduction pathways that regulate cell cycle progression and the mechanisms cells employ to insure DNA stability in the face of genotoxic stress. In particular, we focus on mammalian cell cycle checkpoint functions, their role in maintaining DNA stability during the cell cycle following exposure to genotoxic agents, and the gene products that act in checkpoint function signal transduction cascades. Key transitions in the cell cycle are regulated by the activities of various protein kinase complexes composed of cyclin and cyclin-dependent kinase (Cdk) molecules. Surveillance control mechanisms that check to ensure proper completion of early events and cellular integrity before initiation of subsequent events in cell cycle progression are referred to as cell cycle checkpoints and can generate a transient delay that provides the cell more time to repair damage before progressing to the next phase of the cycle. A variety of cellular responses are elicited that function in checkpoint signaling to inhibit cyclin/Cdk activities. These responses include the p53-dependent and p53-independent induction of Cdk inhibitors and the p53-independent inhibitory phosphorylation of Cdk molecules themselves. Eliciting proper G1, S, and G2 checkpoint responses to double-strand DNA breaks requires the function of the Ataxia telangiectasia mutated gene product. Several human heritable cancer-prone syndromes known to alter DNA stability have been found to have defects in checkpoint surveillance pathways. Exposures to several common sources of genotoxic stress, including oxidative stress, ionizing radiation, UV radiation, and the genotoxic compound benzo[a]pyrene, elicit cell cycle

  2. The Role of Soil Organic Matter, Nutrients, and Microbial Community Structure on the Performance of Microbial Fuel Cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rooney-Varga, J. N.; Dunaj, S. J.; Vallino, J. J.; Hines, M. E.; Gay, M.; Kobyljanec, C.

    2011-12-01

    Microbial fuel cells (MFCs) offer the potential for generating electricity, mitigating greenhouse gas emissions, and bioremediating pollutants through utilization of a plentiful, natural, and renewable resource: soil organic carbon. In the current study, we analyzed microbial community structure, MFC performance, and soil characteristics in different microhabitats (bulk soil, anode, and cathode) within MFCs constructed from agricultural or forest soils in order to determine how soil type and microbial dynamics influence MFC performance. MFCs were constructed with soils from agricultural and hardwood forest sites at Harvard Forest (Petersham, MA). The bulk soil characteristics were analyzed, including polyphenols, short chain fatty acids, total organic C and N, abiotic macronutrients, N and P mineralization rates, CO2 respiration rates, and MFC power output. Microbial community structure of the anodes, cathodes, and bulk soils was determined with molecular fingerprinting methods, which included terminal restriction length polymorphism (T-RFLP) analysis and 16S rRNA gene sequencing analysis. Our results indicated that MFCs constructed from agricultural soil had power output about 17 times that of forest soil-based MFCs and respiration rates about 10 times higher than forest soil MFCs. Agricultural soil MFCs had lower C:N ratios, polyphenol content, and acetate concentrations than forest soil MFCs, suggesting that active agricultural MFC microbial communities were supported by higher quality organic carbon. Microbial community profile data indicate that the microbial communities at the anode of the high power MFCs were less diverse than in low power MFCs and were dominated by Deltaproteobacteria, Geobacter, and, to a lesser extent, Clostridia, while low-power MFC anode communities were dominated by Clostridia. These data suggest that the presence of organic carbon substrate (acetate) was not the major limiting factor in selecting for highly electrogenic microbial

  3. Effects of microbial redox cycling of iron on cast iron pipe corrosion in drinking water distribution systems.

    PubMed

    Wang, Haibo; Hu, Chun; Zhang, Lili; Li, Xiaoxiao; Zhang, Yu; Yang, Min

    2014-11-15

    Bacterial characteristics in corrosion products and their effect on the formation of dense corrosion scales on cast iron coupons were studied in drinking water, with sterile water acting as a reference. The corrosion process and corrosion scales were characterized by electrochemical and physico-chemical measurements. The results indicated that the corrosion was more rapidly inhibited and iron release was lower due to formation of more dense protective corrosion scales in drinking water than in sterile water. The microbial community and denitrifying functional genes were analyzed by pyrosequencing and quantitative polymerase chain reactions (qPCR), respectively. Principal component analysis (PCA) showed that the bacteria in corrosion products played an important role in the corrosion process in drinking water. Nitrate-reducing bacteria (NRB) Acidovorax and Hydrogenophaga enhanced iron corrosion before 6 days. After 20 days, the dominant bacteria became NRB Dechloromonas (40.08%) with the protective corrosion layer formation. The Dechloromonas exhibited the stronger corrosion inhibition by inducing the redox cycling of iron, to enhance the precipitation of iron oxides and formation of Fe3O4. Subsequently, other minor bacteria appeared in the corrosion scales, including iron-respiring bacteria and Rhizobium which captured iron by the produced siderophores, having a weaker corrosion-inhibition effect. Therefore, the microbially-driven redox cycling of iron with associated microbial capture of iron caused more compact corrosion scales formation and lower iron release.

  4. Development and Integration of Genome-Enabled Techniques to Track and Predict the Cycling of Carbon in Model Microbial Communities

    SciTech Connect

    Banfield, Jillian

    2014-11-26

    The primary objective of this project was to establish widely applicable, high-throughput “omics” methods for tracking carbon flow in microbial communities at a strain-resolved molecular level. We developed and applied these methods to study a well-established microbial community model system with a long history of “omics” innovation: chemoautotrophic biofilms grown in an acid mine drainage (AMD) environment. The methods are now being transitioned (in a new project) to study soil. Using metagenomics, stable-isotope proteomics, stable-isotope metabolomics, transcriptomics, and microscopy, we tracked carbon flow during initial biofilm growth involving CO2 fixation, through the maturing biofilm community consisting of multiple trophic levels, and during an anaerobic degradative phase after biofilms sink. This work included explicit consideration of the often overlooked roles of archaea and microbial eukaryotes (fungi) in carbon turnover. We also analyzed where the eosystem begins to fail in response to thermal perturbation, and how perturbation propagates through a carbon cycle. We investigated the form of strain variation in microbial communities, the importance of strain variants, and the rate and form of strain evolution. Overall, the project generated an array of new, integrated ‘omics’ approaches and provided unprecedented insight into the functioning of a natural ecosystem. This project supported graduate training for five Ph.D. students and three post doctoral fellows and contributed directly to at least 26 publications (two in Science).

  5. Changes in land use driven by urbanization impact nitrogen cycling and the microbial community composition in soils

    PubMed Central

    Wang, Haitao; Marshall, Christopher W.; Cheng, Minying; Xu, Huijuan; Li, Hu; Yang, Xiaoru; Zheng, Tianling

    2017-01-01

    Transition of populations from rural to urban living causes landscape changes and alters the functionality of soil ecosystems. It is unclear how this urbanization disturbs the microbial ecology of soils and how the disruption influences nitrogen cycling. In this study, microbial communities in turfgrass-grown soils from urban and suburban areas around Xiamen City were compared to microbial communities in the soils from rural farmlands. The potential N2O emissions, potential denitrification activity, and abundances of denitrifiers were higher in the rural farmland soils compared with the turfgrass soils. Ammonia oxidizing archaea (AOA) were more abundant than ammonia oxidizing bacteria (AOB) in turfgrass soils. Within turfgrass soils, the potential nitrification activities and AOA abundances were higher in the urban than in the suburban soils. These results indicate a more pivotal role of AOA in nitrification, especially in urban soils. Microbial community composition was distinctly grouped along urbanization categories (urban, suburban, and rural) classified according to the population density, which can in part be attributed to the differences in soil properties. These observed changes could potentially have a broader impact on soil nutrient availability and greenhouse gas emissions. PMID:28281565

  6. Integrating 'omic' data and biogeochemical modeling: the key to understanding the microbial regulation of matter cycling in soil

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pagel, Holger; Kandeler, Ellen; Seifert, Jana; Camarinha-Silva, Amélia; Kügler, Philipp; Rennert, Thilo; Poll, Christian; Streck, Thilo

    2016-04-01

    Matter cycling in soils and associated soil functions are intrinsically controlled by microbial dynamics. It is therefore crucial to consider functional traits of microorganisms in biogeochemical models. Tremendous advances in 'omic' methods provide a plethora of data on physiology, metabolic capabilities and ecological life strategies of microorganisms in soil. Combined with isotopic techniques, biochemical pathways and transformations can be identified and quantified. Such data have been, however, rarely used to improve the mechanistic representation of microbial dynamics in soil organic matter models. It is the goal of the Young Investigator Group SoilReg to address this challenge. Our general approach is to tightly integrate experiments and biochemical modeling. NextGen sequencing will be applied to identify key functional groups. Active microbial groups will be quantified by measurements of functional genes and by stable isotope probing methods of DNA and proteins. Based on this information a biogeochemical model that couples a mechanistic representation of microbial dynamics with physicochemical processes will be set up and calibrated. Sensitivity and stability analyses of the model as well as scenario simulations will reveal the importance of intrinsic and extrinsic controls of organic matter turnover. We will demonstrate our concept and present first results of two case studies on pesticide degradation and methane oxidation.

  7. Changes in land use driven by urbanization impact nitrogen cycling and the microbial community composition in soils

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wang, Haitao; Marshall, Christopher W.; Cheng, Minying; Xu, Huijuan; Li, Hu; Yang, Xiaoru; Zheng, Tianling

    2017-03-01

    Transition of populations from rural to urban living causes landscape changes and alters the functionality of soil ecosystems. It is unclear how this urbanization disturbs the microbial ecology of soils and how the disruption influences nitrogen cycling. In this study, microbial communities in turfgrass-grown soils from urban and suburban areas around Xiamen City were compared to microbial communities in the soils from rural farmlands. The potential N2O emissions, potential denitrification activity, and abundances of denitrifiers were higher in the rural farmland soils compared with the turfgrass soils. Ammonia oxidizing archaea (AOA) were more abundant than ammonia oxidizing bacteria (AOB) in turfgrass soils. Within turfgrass soils, the potential nitrification activities and AOA abundances were higher in the urban than in the suburban soils. These results indicate a more pivotal role of AOA in nitrification, especially in urban soils. Microbial community composition was distinctly grouped along urbanization categories (urban, suburban, and rural) classified according to the population density, which can in part be attributed to the differences in soil properties. These observed changes could potentially have a broader impact on soil nutrient availability and greenhouse gas emissions.

  8. Disconnected circadian and cell cycles in a tumor-driven cell line.

    PubMed

    Pendergast, Julie S; Yeom, Mijung; Reyes, Bryan A; Ohmiya, Yoshihiro; Yamazaki, Shin

    2010-11-01

    Cell division occurs at a specific time of day in numerous species, suggesting that the circadian and cell cycles are coupled in vivo. By measuring the cell cycle rhythm in real-time, we recently showed that the circadian and cell cycles are not coupled in immortalized fibroblasts, resulting in a rapid rate of cell division even though the circadian rhythm is normal in these cells. Here we report that tumor-driven Lewis lung carcinoma (LLC) cells have perfectly temperature compensated circadian clocks, but the periods of their cell cycle gene expression rhythms are temperature-dependent, suggesting that their circadian and cell cycles are not connected. These data support our hypothesis that decoupling of the circadian and cell cycles may underlie aberrant cell division in tumor cells.

  9. Microbial community response to hydration-desiccation cycles in desert soil

    PubMed Central

    Šťovíček, Adam; Kim, Minsu; Or, Dani; Gillor, Osnat

    2017-01-01

    Life in desert soil is marked by episodic pulses of water and nutrients followed by long periods of drought. While the desert flora and fauna flourish after rainfall the response of soil microorganisms remains unclear and understudied. We provide the first systematic study of the role of soil aqueous habitat dynamics in shaping microbial community composition and diversity. Detailed monitoring of natural microbial communities after a rainfall event revealed a remarkable decrease in diversity and a significant transition in community composition that were gradually restored to pre-rainfall values during soil desiccation. Modelling results suggest a critical role for the fragmented aqueous habitat in maintaining microbial diversity under dry soil conditions and diversity loss with wetting events that increase connectivity among habitats. This interdisciplinary study provides new insights into wetting and drying processes that promote and restore the unparalleled microbial diversity found in soil. PMID:28383531

  10. What's on the menu? Assessing microbial carbon sources and cycling in soils using natural abundance radiocarbon analysis

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mahmoudi, N.; Burns, L.; Mancini, S.; Fulthorpe, R.; Slater, G. F.

    2011-12-01

    Organic matter in soils is composed of diverse materials in various stages of decomposition. Soil organic matter is not in a single pool but rather in multiple carbon pools with different intrinsic turnover times that can be on annual to decadal and even millennial timescales. Microorganisms can influence the total amount of carbon stored in soils and the turnover rates of these different pools. However, the links between microbes and their ability to utilize these various carbon pools are not well understood. Moreover, microbes have been shown to co-utilize a number of available carbon sources rather than a single carbon source under soil conditions which creates difficulties in identifying microbial carbon sources in the natural environment. Compound-specific radiocarbon analysis of microbial phospholipid fatty acids (PLFA) has become a useful tool in elucidating microbial carbon sources in complex environments with multiple carbon sources. We investigated microbial carbon cycling at an industrial site in Ontario which included a variety of carbon sources including vegetation, PAHs and natural organic matter (NOM). Using this approach, the 14C content of microbial membrane lipids (which reflects their carbon source) can be compared to surrounding carbon sources in order to assess which carbon source they are metabolizing and incorporating into their lipids. In addition, we assessed microbial community structure and diversity by analyzing amplified bacterial, eukaryotic and archaeal rDNA fragments with denaturing gel gradient electrophoresis (DGGE). The Δ14C value for PLFAs ranged from +54 to -697% which indicates that microbial carbon sources across soils differ. The Δ14CPLFA for some soils is consistent with modern carbon sources while Δ14CPLFA for other soils is consistent with natural organic matter including older pools of carbon. The microbial communities at this site are not metabolizing PAHs but rather they are utilizing various pools of natural organic

  11. Cell Cycle Related Differentiation of Bone Marrow Cells into Lung Cells

    SciTech Connect

    Dooner, Mark; Aliotta, Jason M.; Pimental, Jeffrey; Dooner, Gerri J.; Abedi, Mehrdad; Colvin, Gerald; Liu, Qin; Weier, Heinz-Ulli; Dooner, Mark S.; Quesenberry, Peter J.

    2007-12-31

    Green-fluorescent protein (GFP) labeled marrow cells transplanted into lethally irradiated mice can be detected in the lungs of transplanted mice and have been shown to express lung specific proteins while lacking the expression of hematopoietic markers. We have studied marrow cells induced to transit cell cycle by exposure to IL-3, IL-6, IL-11 and steel factor at different times of culture corresponding to different phases of cell cycle. We have found that marrow cells at the G1/S interface have a 3-fold increase in cells which assume a lung phenotype and that this increase is no longer seen in late S/G2. These cells have been characterized as GFP{sup +} CD45{sup -} and GFP{sup +} cytokeratin{sup +}. Thus marrow cells with the capacity to convert into cells with a lung phenotype after transplantation show a reversible increase with cytokine induced cell cycle transit. Previous studies have shown the phenotype of bone marrow stem cells fluctuates reversibly as these cells traverse cell cycle, leading to a continuum model of stem cell regulation. The present studies indicate that marrow stem cell production of nonhematopoietic cells also fluctuates on a continuum.

  12. Flow dependent performance of microfluidic microbial fuel cells.

    PubMed

    Vigolo, Daniele; Al-Housseiny, Talal T; Shen, Yi; Akinlawon, Fiyinfoluwa O; Al-Housseiny, Saif T; Hobson, Ronald K; Sahu, Amaresh; Bedkowski, Katherine I; DiChristina, Thomas J; Stone, Howard A

    2014-06-28

    The integration of Microbial Fuel Cells (MFCs) in a microfluidic geometry can significantly enhance the power density of these cells, which would have more active bacteria per unit volume. Moreover, microfluidic MFCs can be operated in a continuous mode as opposed to the traditional batch-fed mode. Here we investigate the effect of fluid flow on the performance of microfluidic MFCs. The growth and the structure of the bacterial biofilm depend to a large extent on the shear stress of the flow. We report the existence of a range of flow rates for which MFCs can achieve maximum voltage output. When operated under these optimal conditions, the power density of our microfluidic MFC is about 15 times that of a similar-size batch MFC. Furthermore, this optimum suggests a correlation between the behaviour of bacteria and fluid flow.

  13. Nitrite as a candidate substrate in microbial fuel cells.

    PubMed

    Faraghi, Neda; Ebrahimi, Sirous

    2012-08-01

    Current generation using nitrite as substrate (pH 6.9, 40 mgN l(-1)) in a nitrite-fed microbial fuel cell was investigated under anaerobic and aerobic anodic conditions as an alternative to the biological nitrite oxidation process. Cell current, coulombic efficiency (CE) and power generation of 0.04 mA, 30 ± 2 % and 19.3 ± 3.3 μW m(-2), respectively, were observed under anaerobic conditions while complete nitrite degradation (no current) was obtained under aerobic conditions. Switching from aerobic to anaerobic anode enhanced the CE and power generation (39 ± 1 % and 29 ± 4.3 μW m(-2)).

  14. Synergic system between photovoltaic module and microbial fuel cell with simultaneous pollution control

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Vasyliv, Oresta; Dhere, Neelkanth G.

    2015-05-01

    Combined photovoltaic module-microbial fuel cell construction shows prospect of advanced autonomous functioning effective energy-production system with the possibility of round-the-clock power generation. Application of Desulfuromonas sp. as anode biocatalyst in photovoltaic (PV) - microbial fuel cell (MFC) could support highly effective eco-friendly energy derivation with simultaneous reduction of organic and inorganic wastes in water environment. D. acetoxidans is exoelectrogenic bacterium that supports S0-reduction with H2S formation and S0-oxidation while an electrode serves as the electron acceptor. Simultaneous sulfur redox processes enhance electron transfer to the electrode surface that may increase the effectiveness of microbial fuel cell performance. It was shown that D. acetoxidans IMV B-7384 possesses selective resistance to 0.5-2.5 mM of copper, iron, nickel, manganese and lead ions. Metal-resistant strains of this bacterium may help overcome H2S toxicity, which is produced because of dissimilative S0-reduction, since divalent cations will interact with sulfide ions, forming insoluble precipitates. Thus D. acetoxidans IMV B-7384 may be applied for remediation of toxic metal ions from water environments because of metal fixation in form of insoluble complexes of metal sulfides. D. acetoxidans IMV B-7384 is presumed to have the capability to convert organic compounds, such as malate, pyruvate, succinate and fumarate via reductive stage of tricarboxylic acid cycle. Thus application of effluents as anolyte in MFC, based on D. acetoxidans IMV B-7384, may cause decrease of its organic content with formation of simple benign constituents, such as CO2 and H2O. Hence the advanced system for eco-friendly energy generation with simultaneous water pollution control is proposed.

  15. Analysis of the microbial community of the biocathode of a hydrogen-producing microbial electrolysis cell.

    PubMed

    Croese, Elsemiek; Pereira, Maria Alcina; Euverink, Gert-Jan W; Stams, Alfons J M; Geelhoed, Jeanine S

    2011-12-01

    The microbial electrolysis cell (MEC) is a promising system for hydrogen production. Still, expensive catalysts such as platinum are needed for efficient hydrogen evolution at the cathode. Recently, the possibility to use a biocathode as an alternative for platinum was shown. The microorganisms involved in hydrogen evolution in such systems are not yet identified. We analyzed the microbial community of a mixed culture biocathode that was enriched in an MEC bioanode. This biocathode produced 1.1 A m(-2) and 0.63 m3 H2 m(-3) cathode liquid volume per day. The bacterial population consisted of 46% Proteobacteria, 25% Firmicutes, 17% Bacteroidetes, and 12% related to other phyla. The dominant ribotype belonged to the species Desulfovibrio vulgaris. The second major ribotype cluster constituted a novel taxonomic group at the genus level, clustering within uncultured Firmicutes. The third cluster belonged to uncultured Bacteroidetes and grouped in a taxonomic group from which only clones were described before; most of these clones originated from soil samples. The identified novel taxonomic groups developed under environmentally unusual conditions, and this may point to properties that have not been considered before. A pure culture of Desulfovibrio strain G11 inoculated in a cathode of an MEC led to a current development from 0.17 to 0.76 A m(-2) in 9 days, and hydrogen gas formation was observed. On the basis of the known characteristics of Desulfovibrio spp., including its ability to produce hydrogen, we propose a mechanism for hydrogen evolution through Desulfovibrio spp. in a biocathode system.

  16. Exploring a microbial ecosystem approach to modeling deep ocean biogeochemical cycles

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zakem, E.; Follows, M. J.

    2014-12-01

    Though microbial respiration of organic matter in the deep ocean governs ocean and atmosphere biogeochemistry, it is not represented mechanistically in current global biogeochemical models. We seek approaches that are feasible for a global resolution, yet still reflect the enormous biodiversity of the deep microbial community and its associated metabolic pathways. We present a modeling framework grounded in thermodynamics and redox reaction stoichiometry that represents diverse microbial metabolisms explicitly. We describe a bacterial/archaeal functional type with two parameters: a growth efficiency representing the chemistry underlying a bacterial metabolism, and a rate limitation given by the rate of uptake of each of the necessary substrates for that metabolism. We then apply this approach to answer questions about microbial ecology. As a start, we resolve two dominant heterotrophic respiratory pathways- reduction of oxygen and nitrate- and associated microbial functional types. We combine these into an ecological model and a two-dimensional ocean circulation model to explore the organization, biogeochemistry, and ecology of oxygen minimum zones. Intensified upwelling and lateral transport conspire to produce an oxygen minimum at mid-depth, populated by anaerobic denitrifiers. This modeling approach should ultimately allow for the emergence of bacterial biogeography from competition of metabolisms and for the incorporation of microbial feedbacks to the climate system.

  17. Ca2+ signaling, genes and the cell cycle

    PubMed Central

    Machaca, Khaled

    2013-01-01

    Changes in the concentration and spatial distribution of Ca2+ ions in the cytoplasm constitute a ubiquitous intracellular signaling module in cellular physiology. With the advent of Ca2+ dyes that allow direct visualization of Ca2+ transients, combined with powerful experimental tools such as electrophysiological recordings, intracellular Ca2+ transients have been implicated in practically every aspect of cellular physiology, including cellular proliferation. Ca2+ signals are associated with different phases of the cell cycle and interfering with Ca2+ signaling or downstream pathways often disrupts progression of the cell cycle. Although there exists a dependence between Ca2+ signals and the cell cycle the mechanisms involved are not well defined and given the cross-talk between Ca2+ and other signaling modules, it is difficult to assess the exact role of Ca2+ signals in cell cycle progression. Two exceptions however, include fertilization and T-cell activation, where well-defined roles for Ca2+ signals in mediating progression through specific stages of the cell cycle have been clearly established. In the case of T-cell activation Ca2+ regulates entry into the cell cycle through the induction of gene transcription. PMID:21084120

  18. Impact of the cell division cycle on gene circuits

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bierbaum, Veronika; Klumpp, Stefan

    2015-12-01

    In growing cells, protein synthesis and cell growth are typically not synchronous, and, thus, protein concentrations vary over the cell division cycle. We have developed a theoretical description of genetic regulatory systems in bacteria that explicitly considers the cell division cycle to investigate its impact on gene expression. We calculate the cell-to-cell variations arising from cells being at different stages in the division cycle for unregulated genes and for basic regulatory mechanisms. These variations contribute to the extrinsic noise observed in single-cell experiments, and are most significant for proteins with short lifetimes. Negative autoregulation buffers against variation of protein concentration over the division cycle, but the effect is found to be relatively weak. Stronger buffering is achieved by an increased protein lifetime. Positive autoregulation can strongly amplify such variation if the parameters are set to values that lead to resonance-like behaviour. For cooperative positive autoregulation, the concentration variation over the division cycle diminishes the parameter region of bistability and modulates the switching times between the two stable states. The same effects are seen for a two-gene mutual-repression toggle switch. By contrast, an oscillatory circuit, the repressilator, is only weakly affected by the division cycle.

  19. Probabilistic Model of Microbial Cell Growth, Division, and Mortality ▿

    PubMed Central

    Horowitz, Joseph; Normand, Mark D.; Corradini, Maria G.; Peleg, Micha

    2010-01-01

    After a short time interval of length δt during microbial growth, an individual cell can be found to be divided with probability Pd(t)δt, dead with probability Pm(t)δt, or alive but undivided with the probability 1 − [Pd(t) + Pm(t)]δt, where t is time, Pd(t) expresses the probability of division for an individual cell per unit of time, and Pm(t) expresses the probability of mortality per unit of time. These probabilities may change with the state of the population and the habitat's properties and are therefore functions of time. This scenario translates into a model that is presented in stochastic and deterministic versions. The first, a stochastic process model, monitors the fates of individual cells and determines cell numbers. It is particularly suitable for small populations such as those that may exist in the case of casual contamination of a food by a pathogen. The second, which can be regarded as a large-population limit of the stochastic model, is a continuous mathematical expression that describes the population's size as a function of time. It is suitable for large microbial populations such as those present in unprocessed foods. Exponential or logistic growth with or without lag, inactivation with or without a “shoulder,” and transitions between growth and inactivation are all manifestations of the underlying probability structure of the model. With temperature-dependent parameters, the model can be used to simulate nonisothermal growth and inactivation patterns. The same concept applies to other factors that promote or inhibit microorganisms, such as pH and the presence of antimicrobials, etc. With Pd(t) and Pm(t) in the form of logistic functions, the model can simulate all commonly observed growth/mortality patterns. Estimates of the changing probability parameters can be obtained with both the stochastic and deterministic versions of the model, as demonstrated with simulated data. PMID:19915038

  20. The Mammalian Cell Cycle Regulates Parvovirus Nuclear Capsid Assembly

    PubMed Central

    Riolobos, Laura; Domínguez, Carlos; Kann, Michael; Almendral, José M.

    2015-01-01

    It is unknown whether the mammalian cell cycle could impact the assembly of viruses maturing in the nucleus. We addressed this question using MVM, a reference member of the icosahedral ssDNA nuclear parvoviruses, which requires cell proliferation to infect by mechanisms partly understood. Constitutively expressed MVM capsid subunits (VPs) accumulated in the cytoplasm of mouse and human fibroblasts synchronized at G0, G1, and G1/S transition. Upon arrest release, VPs translocated to the nucleus as cells entered S phase, at efficiencies relying on cell origin and arrest method, and immediately assembled into capsids. In synchronously infected cells, the consecutive virus life cycle steps (gene expression, proteins nuclear translocation, capsid assembly, genome replication and encapsidation) proceeded tightly coupled to cell cycle progression from G0/G1 through S into G2 phase. However, a DNA synthesis stress caused by thymidine irreversibly disrupted virus life cycle, as VPs became increasingly retained in the cytoplasm hours post-stress, forming empty capsids in mouse fibroblasts, thereby impairing encapsidation of the nuclear viral DNA replicative intermediates. Synchronously infected cells subjected to density-arrest signals while traversing early S phase also blocked VPs transport, resulting in a similar misplaced cytoplasmic capsid assembly in mouse fibroblasts. In contrast, thymidine and density arrest signals deregulating virus assembly neither perturbed nuclear translocation of the NS1 protein nor viral genome replication occurring under S/G2 cycle arrest. An underlying mechanism of cell cycle control was identified in the nuclear translocation of phosphorylated VPs trimeric assembly intermediates, which accessed a non-conserved route distinct from the importin α2/β1 and transportin pathways. The exquisite cell cycle-dependence of parvovirus nuclear capsid assembly conforms a novel paradigm of time and functional coupling between cellular and virus life

  1. Enhancement of Electricity Production by Graphene Oxide in Soil Microbial Fuel Cells and Plant Microbial Fuel Cells

    PubMed Central

    Goto, Yuko; Yoshida, Naoko; Umeyama, Yuto; Yamada, Takeshi; Tero, Ryugo; Hiraishi, Akira

    2015-01-01

    The effects of graphene oxide (GO) on electricity generation in soil microbial fuel cells (SMFCs) and plant microbial fuel cell (PMFCs) were investigated. GO at concentrations ranging from 0 to 1.9 g⋅kg−1 was added to soil and reduced for 10 days under anaerobic incubation. All SMFCs (GO-SMFCs) utilizing the soils incubated with GO produced electricity at a greater rate and in higher quantities than the SMFCs which did not contain GO. In fed-batch operations, the overall average electricity generation in GO-SMFCs containing 1.0 g⋅kg−1 of GO was 40 ± 19 mW⋅m−2, which was significantly higher than the value of 6.6 ± 8.9 mW⋅m−2 generated from GO-free SMFCs (p < 0.05). The increase in catalytic current at the oxidative potential was observed by cyclic voltammetry (CV) for GO-SMFC, with the CV curve suggesting the enhancement of electron transfer from oxidation of organic substances in the soil by the reduced form of GO. The GO-containing PMFC also displayed a greater generation of electricity compared to the PMFC with no added GO, with GO-PMFC producing 49 mW⋅m−2 of electricity after 27 days of operation. Collectively, this study demonstrates that GO added to soil can be microbially reduced in soil, and facilitates electron transfer to the anode in both SMFCs and PMFCs. PMID:25883931

  2. Enhancement of electricity production by graphene oxide in soil microbial fuel cells and plant microbial fuel cells.

    PubMed

    Goto, Yuko; Yoshida, Naoko; Umeyama, Yuto; Yamada, Takeshi; Tero, Ryugo; Hiraishi, Akira

    2015-01-01

    The effects of graphene oxide (GO) on electricity generation in soil microbial fuel cells (SMFCs) and plant microbial fuel cell (PMFCs) were investigated. GO at concentrations ranging from 0 to 1.9 g⋅kg(-1) was added to soil and reduced for 10 days under anaerobic incubation. All SMFCs (GO-SMFCs) utilizing the soils incubated with GO produced electricity at a greater rate and in higher quantities than the SMFCs which did not contain GO. In fed-batch operations, the overall average electricity generation in GO-SMFCs containing 1.0 g⋅kg(-1) of GO was 40 ± 19 mW⋅m(-2), which was significantly higher than the value of 6.6 ± 8.9 mW⋅m(-2) generated from GO-free SMFCs (p < 0.05). The increase in catalytic current at the oxidative potential was observed by cyclic voltammetry (CV) for GO-SMFC, with the CV curve suggesting the enhancement of electron transfer from oxidation of organic substances in the soil by the reduced form of GO. The GO-containing PMFC also displayed a greater generation of electricity compared to the PMFC with no added GO, with GO-PMFC producing 49 mW⋅m(-2) of electricity after 27 days of operation. Collectively, this study demonstrates that GO added to soil can be microbially reduced in soil, and facilitates electron transfer to the anode in both SMFCs and PMFCs.

  3. Mechanisms of sulindac-induced apoptosis and cell cycle arrest.

    PubMed

    Jung, Barbara; Barbier, Valerie; Brickner, Howard; Welsh, John; Fotedar, Arun; McClelland, Michael

    2005-02-28

    The mechanism underlying the chemopreventive effects of the non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drug sulindac remains unclear. Its active metabolite, sulindac sulfide, induces cell cycle arrest as well as apoptosis in mammalian cell lines. We now show that in murine thymocytes, sulindac sulfide-induced cell death is p53, bax, Fas, and FasL independent. In contrast, bcl2 transgenic thymocytes are resistant to sulindac sulfide-induced apoptosis. In addition, we demonstrate that sulindac sulfide-induced cell cycle arrest in mouse embryonic fibroblasts (MEFs) is partly mediated by the retinoblastoma tumor suppressor protein (Rb) and the cyclin kinase inhibitor p21waf1/cip1. Furthermore, MEFs deficient in p21 or Rb are more susceptible to sulindac sulfide-induced cell death. These results suggest that sulindac may selectively target premalignant cells with cell cycle checkpoint deficits.

  4. Configuration and performance of fuel cell-combined cycle options

    SciTech Connect

    Rath, L.K.; Le, P.H.; Sudhoff, F.A.

    1995-12-31

    The natural gas, indirect-fired, carbonate fuel-cell-bottomed, combined cycle (NG-IFCFC) and the topping natural-gas/solid-oxide fuel-cell combined cycle (NG-SOFCCC) are introduced as novel power-plant systems for the distributed power and on-site markets in the 20-200 mega-watt (MW) size range. The novel NG-IFCFC power-plant system configures the ambient pressure molten-carbonate fuel cell (MCFC) with a gas turbine, air compressor, combustor, and ceramic heat exchanger: The topping solid-oxide fuel-cell (SOFC) combined cycle is not new. The purpose of combining a gas turbine with a fuel cell was to inject pressurized air into a high-pressure fuel cell and to reduce the size, and thereby, to reduce the cost of the fuel cell. Today, the SOFC remains pressurized, but excess chemical energy is combusted and the thermal energy is utilized by the Carnot cycle heat engine to complete the system. ASPEN performance results indicate efficiencies and heat rates for the NG-IFCFC or NG-SOFCCC are better than conventional fuel cell or gas turbine steam-bottomed cycles, but with smaller and less expensive components. Fuel cell and gas turbine systems should not be viewed as competitors, but as an opportunity to expand to markets where neither gas turbines nor fuel cells alone would be commercially viable. Non-attainment areas are the most likely markets.

  5. Intercellular Coupling of the Cell Cycle and Circadian Clock in Adult Stem Cell Culture.

    PubMed

    Matsu-Ura, Toru; Dovzhenok, Andrey; Aihara, Eitaro; Rood, Jill; Le, Hung; Ren, Yan; Rosselot, Andrew E; Zhang, Tongli; Lee, Choogon; Obrietan, Karl; Montrose, Marshall H; Lim, Sookkyung; Moore, Sean R; Hong, Christian I

    2016-12-01

    Circadian clock-gated cell division cycles are observed from cyanobacteria to mammals via intracellular molecular connections between these two oscillators. Here we demonstrate WNT-mediated intercellular coupling between the cell cycle and circadian clock in 3D murine intestinal organoids (enteroids). The circadian clock gates a population of cells with heterogeneous cell-cycle times that emerge as 12-hr synchronized cell division cycles. Remarkably, we observe reduced-amplitude oscillations of circadian rhythms in intestinal stem cells and progenitor cells, indicating an intercellular signal arising from differentiated cells governing circadian clock-dependent synchronized cell division cycles. Stochastic simulations and experimental validations reveal Paneth cell-secreted WNT as the key intercellular coupling component linking the circadian clock and cell cycle in enteroids.

  6. Estrogen receptor alpha is cell cycle-regulated and regulates the cell cycle in a ligand-dependent fashion.

    PubMed

    JavanMoghadam, Sonia; Weihua, Zhang; Hunt, Kelly K; Keyomarsi, Khandan

    2016-06-17

    Estrogen receptor alpha (ERα) has been implicated in several cell cycle regulatory events and is an important predictive marker of disease outcome in breast cancer patients. Here, we aimed to elucidate the mechanism through which ERα influences proliferation in breast cancer cells. Our results show that ERα protein is cell cycle-regulated in human breast cancer cells and that the presence of 17-β-estradiol (E2) in the culture medium shortened the cell cycle significantly (by 4.5 hours, P < 0.05) compared with unliganded conditions. The alterations in cell cycle duration were observed in the S and G2/M phases, whereas the G1 phase was indistinguishable under liganded and unliganded conditions. In addition, ERα knockdown in MCF-7 cells accelerated mitotic exit, whereas transfection of ERα-negative MDA-MB-231 cells with exogenous ERα significantly shortened the S and G2/M phases (by 9.1 hours, P < 0.05) compared with parental cells. Finally, treatment of MCF-7 cells with antiestrogens revealed that tamoxifen yields a slower cell cycle progression through the S and G2/M phases than fulvestrant does, presumably because of the destabilizing effect of fulvestrant on ERα protein. Together, these results show that ERα modulates breast cancer cell proliferation by regulating events during the S and G2/M phases of the cell cycle in a ligand-dependent fashion. These results provide the rationale for an effective treatment strategy that includes a cell cycle inhibitor in combination with a drug that lowers estrogen levels, such as an aromatase inhibitor, and an antiestrogen that does not result in the degradation of ERα, such as tamoxifen.

  7. Microbial Nitrogen Cycling Associated with the Early Diagenesis of Organic Matter in Subseafloor Sediments

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhao, R.

    2015-12-01

    The early diagenesis of organic matter is the major energy source of marine sedimentary biosphere and thus controls its population size; however, the vertical distribution of any functional groups along with the diagenesis of organic matter is remained unclear, especially for those microbes involved in nitrogen transformation which serve as a major control on the nitrogen flux between reservoirs. Here we investigated the vertical distributions of various functional groups in five sediment cores retrieved from Arctic Mid-Ocean Ridge (AMOR), with emphasis on the nitrifiers, denitrifiers and anaerobic ammonium oxidizing bacteria (anammox). We observed the clear geochemical zonation associated with organic matter diagenesis in the sediments based on the pore water profiles of oxygen, nitrate, ammonium, manganese and sulfate, with distinct geochemical transition zones at the boundaries of geochemical zones, including oxic-anoxic transition zone (OATZ) and nitrate-manganese reduction zone (NMTZ). Nitrate was produced in surface oxygenated sediments and nitrate consumption mainly took place at the NMTZ, splitted between re-oxidation of ammonium and manganese (II). Abundances of ammonia oxidizers, nitrite oxidizers, and denitrifiers, estimated through quantitative PCR targeting their respective functional genes, generally decrease with depth, but constantly elevated around the OATZ, NMTZ, and manganese-reduction zone as well. Anammox bacteria were only detected around the NMTZ where both nitrate/nitrite and ammonium are available. These depth profiles of functional groups were also confirmed by the community structure profiling by prokaryotic 16S rRNA gene tag pyrosequencing. Cell-specific rates of nitrification and denitrification, calculated from the bulk net reaction rates divided by functional group abundances, were similar to those values from oligotrophic sediments like North Pond and thus suggested that nitrifiers and denitirifiers populations were in maintenance

  8. Biotechnological Aspects of Microbial Extracellular Electron Transfer

    PubMed Central

    Kato, Souichiro

    2015-01-01

    Extracellular electron transfer (EET) is a type of microbial respiration that enables electron transfer between microbial cells and extracellular solid materials, including naturally-occurring metal compounds and artificial electrodes. Microorganisms harboring EET abilities have received considerable attention for their various biotechnological applications, in addition to their contribution to global energy and material cycles. In this review, current knowledge on microbial EET and its application to diverse biotechnologies, including the bioremediation of toxic metals, recovery of useful metals, biocorrosion, and microbial electrochemical systems (microbial fuel cells and microbial electrosynthesis), were introduced. Two potential biotechnologies based on microbial EET, namely the electrochemical control of microbial metabolism and electrochemical stimulation of microbial symbiotic reactions (electric syntrophy), were also discussed. PMID:26004795

  9. Apicomplexan cell cycle flexibility: centrosome controls the clutch

    PubMed Central

    Chen, Chun-Ti; Gubbels, Marc-Jan

    2015-01-01

    The centrosome serves as a central hub coordinating multiple cellular events in eukaryotes. A recent study in Toxoplasma gondii revealed a unique bipartite structure of the centrosome, which coordinates the nuclear cycle (S-phase and mitosis) and budding cycle (cytokinesis) of the parasite, and deciphers the principle behind flexible apicomplexan cell division modes. PMID:25899747

  10. Integrated hydrogen production process from cellulose by combining dark fermentation, microbial fuel cells, and a microbial electrolysis cell.

    PubMed

    Wang, Aijie; Sun, Dan; Cao, Guangli; Wang, Haoyu; Ren, Nanqi; Wu, Wei-Min; Logan, Bruce E

    2011-03-01

    Hydrogen gas production from cellulose was investigated using an integrated hydrogen production process consisting of a dark fermentation reactor and microbial fuel cells (MFCs) as power sources for a microbial electrolysis cell (MEC). Two MFCs (each 25 mL) connected in series to an MEC (72 mL) produced a maximum of 0.43 V using fermentation effluent as a feed, achieving a hydrogen production rate from the MEC of 0.48 m(3) H(2)/m(3)/d (based on the MEC volume), and a yield of 33.2 mmol H(2)/g COD removed in the MEC. The overall hydrogen production for the integrated system (fermentation, MFC and MEC) was increased by 41% compared with fermentation alone to 14.3 mmol H(2)/g cellulose, with a total hydrogen production rate of 0.24 m(3) H(2)/m(3)/d and an overall energy recovery efficiency of 23% (based on cellulose removed) without the need for any external electrical energy input.

  11. Self-sustained reduction of multiple metals in a microbial fuel cell-microbial electrolysis cell hybrid system.

    PubMed

    Li, Yan; Wu, Yining; Liu, Bingchuan; Luan, Hongwei; Vadas, Timothy; Guo, Wanqian; Ding, Jie; Li, Baikun

    2015-09-01

    A self-sustained hybrid bioelectrochemical system consisting of microbial fuel cell (MFC) and microbial electrolysis cell (MEC) was developed to reduce multiple metals simultaneously by utilizing different reaction potentials. Three heavy metals representing spontaneous reaction (chromium, Cr) and unspontaneous reaction (lead, Pb and nickel, Ni) were selected in this batch-mode study. The maximum power density of the MFC achieved 189.4 mW m(-2), and the energy recovery relative to the energy storage circuit (ESC) was ∼ 450%. At the initial concentration of 100 mg L(-1), the average reduction rate of Cr(VI) was 30.0 mg L(-1) d(-1), Pb(II) 32.7 mg L(-1) d(-1), and Ni(II) 8.9 mg L(-1) d(-1). An electrochemical model was developed to predict the change of metal concentration over time. The power output of the MFC was sufficient to meet the requirement of the ESC and MEC, and the "self-sustained metal reduction" was achieved in this hybrid system.

  12. A comparison of simultaneous organic carbon and nitrogen removal in microbial fuel cells and microbial electrolysis cells.

    PubMed

    Hussain, Abid; Manuel, Michelle; Tartakovsky, Boris

    2016-05-15

    This study demonstrates simultaneous carbon and nitrogen removal in laboratory-scale continuous flow microbial fuel cell (MFC) and microbial electrolysis cell (MEC) and provides side-by side comparison of these bioelectrochemical systems. The maximum organic carbon removal rates in MFC and MEC tests were similar at 5.1 g L(-1) d(-1) and 4.16 g L(-1) d(-1), respectively, with a near 100% carbon removal efficiency at an organic load of 3.3 g L(-1) d(-1). An ammonium removal efficiency of 30-55% with near-zero nitrite and nitrate concentrations was observed in the MFC operated at an optimal external resistance, while open-circuit MFC operation resulted in a reduced carbon and ammonium removal of 53% and 21%, respectively. In the MEC ammonium removal was limited to 7-12% under anaerobic conditions, while micro-aerobic conditions increased the removal efficiency to 31%. Also, at zero applied voltage both carbon and ammonium removal efficiencies were reduced to 42% and 4%, respectively. Based on the observed performance under different operating conditions, it was concluded that simultaneous carbon and nitrogen removal was facilitated by concurrent anaerobic and aerobic biotransformation pathways at the anode and cathode, which balanced bioelectrochemical nitrification and denitrification reactions.

  13. Genomic Sequencing of Single Microbial Cells from Environmental Samples

    SciTech Connect

    Ishoey, Thomas; Woyke, Tanja; Stepanauskas, Ramunas; Novotny, Mark; Lasken, Roger S.

    2008-02-01

    Recently developed techniques allow genomic DNA sequencing from single microbial cells [Lasken RS: Single-cell genomic sequencing using multiple displacement amplification, Curr Opin Microbiol 2007, 10:510-516]. Here, we focus on research strategies for putting these methods into practice in the laboratory setting. An immediate consequence of single-cell sequencing is that it provides an alternative to culturing organisms as a prerequisite for genomic sequencing. The microgram amounts of DNA required as template are amplified from a single bacterium by a method called multiple displacement amplification (MDA) avoiding the need to grow cells. The ability to sequence DNA from individual cells will likely have an immense impact on microbiology considering the vast numbers of novel organisms, which have been inaccessible unless culture-independent methods could be used. However, special approaches have been necessary to work with amplified DNA. MDA may not recover the entire genome from the single copy present in most bacteria. Also, some sequence rearrangements can occur during the DNA amplification reaction. Over the past two years many research groups have begun to use MDA, and some practical approaches to single-cell sequencing have been developed. We review the consensus that is emerging on optimum methods, reliability of amplified template, and the proper interpretation of 'composite' genomes which result from the necessity of combining data from several single-cell MDA reactions in order to complete the assembly. Preferred laboratory methods are considered on the basis of experience at several large sequencing centers where >70% of genomes are now often recovered from single cells. Methods are reviewed for preparation of bacterial fractions from environmental samples, single-cell isolation, DNA amplification by MDA, and DNA sequencing.

  14. Atomic Force Microscopy in Microbiology: New Structural and Functional Insights into the Microbial Cell Surface

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    ABSTRACT Microbial cells sense and respond to their environment using their surface constituents. Therefore, understanding the assembly and biophysical properties of cell surface molecules is an important research topic. With its ability to observe living microbial cells at nanometer resolution and to manipulate single-cell surface molecules, atomic force microscopy (AFM) has emerged as a powerful tool in microbiology. Here, we survey major breakthroughs made in cell surface microbiology using AFM techniques, emphasizing the most recent structural and functional insights. PMID:25053785

  15. Regulation of the Chlamydomonas cell cycle by light and dark

    PubMed Central

    1980-01-01

    By growing cells in alternating periods of light and darkness, we have found that the synchronization of phototrophically grown Chlamydomonas populations is regulated at two specific points in the cell cycle: the primary arrest (A) point, located in early G1, and the transition (T) point, located in mid-G1. At the A point, cell cycle progression becomes light dependent. At the T point, completion of the cycle becomes independent of light. Cells transferred from light to dark at cell cycle position between the two regulatory points enter a reversible resting state in which they remain viable and metabolically active, but do not progress through their cycles. The photosystem II inhibitor dichlorophenyldimethylurea (DCMU) mimics the A point block induced by darkness. This finding indicates that the A point block is mediated by a signal that operates through photosynthetic electron transport. Cells short of the T point will arrest in darkness although they contain considerable carbohydrate reserves. After the T point, a sharp increase occurs in starch degradation and in the endogenous respiration rate, indicating that some internal block to the availability of stored energy reserves has now been released, permitting cell cycle progression. PMID:6767730

  16. Potential application of microbial iron redox cycles in nitrate removal and their effects on clay mineral properties

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhao, L.; Dong, H.; Kukkadapu, R. K.; Briggs, B. R.; Zeng, Q.

    2014-12-01

    Phyllosilicates that are ubiquitous in subsurface can serve as an iron source for microbial respiration. The objective of this research is to determine the ability of the phyllosilicate Fe to remove nitrate in subsurface undergoing microbial-driven redox cycles. In this study, thus, a well-characterized reference clay (NAu-2; nontronite), was subjected to redox cycles in a system containing dissimilatory Fe(III)-reducing bacteria, Shewanella putrefaciens CN32, and nitrate-dependent Fe(II)-oxidizing bacteria, Pseudogulbenkiania sp. Strain 2002. Three redox cycles were conducted in bicarbonate- and PIPES-buffered medium. The extents of Fe(III) reduction, Fe(II) oxidation, nitrate reduction, and its various intermediate products were measured by wet chemical methods. For each cycle, Electron Energy Loss Spectroscopy and Mossbauer spectroscopy confirmed Fe oxidation state. Mineralogical changes were identified by using X-ray diffraction (XRD), 57Fe-Mössbauer spectroscopy, and infrared absorption spectroscopy. For all three cycles, nitrate was completely reduced to nitrogen gas under both bicarbonate- and PIPES- buffered conditions. As redox cycle increased, bio-reduction extents of Fe(III) in NAu-2 decreased by 33% and 48% in PIPES- and bicarbonate-buffered medium, respectively; however, bio-oxidation extents increased by 66% and 55% in the same medium, respectively. Despite the change of OH-stretching vibration band and OH-bending vibration bands in NAu-2 structure along Fe redox cycles, XRD data showed interlayer spacing of NAu-2 to be constant along the same Fe redox cycle. 57Fe-Mössbauer spectroscopy indicated complex reduction and re-oxidation pathways. For example, a distinct Fe(II) doublet and a Fe2.5+ feature due to interfacial Fe(II)-Fe(III) electron transfer on clay mineral are prominent in their RT spectra. Both these Fe(II) are partially oxidized by Fe(II)-oxidizing bacteria. The result of this study shows that Fe in biogenically reduced or oxidized NAu-2

  17. Electric current generation by sulfur-reducing bacteria in microbial-anode fuel cell

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Vasyliv, Oresta M.; Bilyy, Oleksandr I.; Ferensovych, Yaroslav P.; Hnatush, Svitlana O.

    2012-10-01

    Sulfur - reducing bacteria are a part of normal microflora of natural environment. Their main function is supporting of reductive stage of sulfur cycle by hydrogen sulfide production in the process of dissimilative sulfur-reduction. At the same time these bacteria completely oxidize organic compounds with CO2 and H2O formation. It was shown that they are able to generate electric current in the two chamber microbial-anode fuel cell (MAFC) by interaction between these two processes. Microbial-anode fuel cell on the basis of sulfur- and ferric iron-reducing Desulfuromonas acetoxidans bacteria has been constructed. It has been shown that the amount of electricity generation by investigated bacteria is influenced by the concentrations of carbon source (lactate) and ferric iron chloride. The maximal obtained electric current and potential difference between electrodes equaled respectively 0.28-0.29 mA and 0.19-0.2 V per 0.3 l of bacterial suspension with 0.4 g/l of initial biomass that was grown under the influence of 0.45 mM of FeCl3 and 3 g/l of sodium lactate as primal carbon source. It has also been shown that these bacteria are resistant to different concentrations of silver ions.

  18. Life under ice: Investigating microbial-related biogeochemical cycles in the seasonally-covered Great Lake Onego, Russia

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Thomas, Camille; Ariztegui, Daniel; Victor, Frossard; Emilie, Lyautey; Marie-Elodie, Perga; Life Under Ice Scientific Team

    2016-04-01

    The Great European lakes Ladoga and Onego are important resources for Russia in terms of drinking water, energy, fishing and leisure. Because their northern location (North of Saint Petersburgh), these lakes are usually ice-covered during winter. Due to logistical reasons, their study has thus been limited to the ice-free periods, and very few data are available for the winter season. As a matter of fact, comprehension of large lakes behaviour in winter is very limited as compared to the knowledge available from small subpolar lakes or perennially ice-covered polar lakes. To tackle this issue, an international consortium of scientists has gathered around the « life under ice » project to investigate physical, chemical and biogeochemical changes during winter in Lake Onego. Our team has mainly focused on the characterization and quantification of biological processes, from the water column to the sediment, with a special focus on methane cycling and trophic interactions. A first « on-ice » campaign in March 2015 allowed the sampling of a 120 cm sedimentary core and the collection of water samples at multiple depths. The data resulting from this expedition will be correlated to physical and chemical parameters collected simultaneously. A rapid biological activity test was applied immediately after coring in order to test for microbial activity in the sediments. In situ adenosine-5'-triphosphate (ATP) measurements were carried out in the core and taken as an indication of living organisms within the sediments. The presence of ATP is a marker molecule for metabolically active cells, since it is not known to form abiotically. Deoxyribonucleic acid (DNA) and ribonucleic acid (RNA) were extracted from these samples, and quantified. Quantitative polymerase chain reactions (PCR) were performed on archaeal and bacterial 16S rRNA genes used to reconstruct phylogenies, as well as on their transcripts. Moreover, functional genes involved in the methane and nitrogen cycles

  19. A Role for Programmed Cell Death in the Microbial Loop

    PubMed Central

    Durand, Pierre M.; Whitehead, Kenia; Baliga, Nitin S.

    2013-01-01

    The microbial loop is the conventional model by which nutrients and minerals are recycled in aquatic eco-systems. Biochemical pathways in different organisms become metabolically inter-connected such that nutrients are utilized, processed, released and re-utilized by others. The result is that unrelated individuals end up impacting each others' fitness directly through their metabolic activities. This study focused on the impact of programmed cell death (PCD) on a population's growth as well as its role in the exchange of carbon between two naturally co-occurring halophilic organisms. Flow cytometric, biochemical, 14C radioisotope tracing assays, and global transcriptomic analyses show that organic algal photosynthate released by Dunalliela salina cells undergoing PCD complements the nutritional needs of other non-PCD D. salina cells. This occurs in vitro in a carbon limited environment and enhances the growth of the population. In addition, a co-occurring heterotroph Halobacterium salinarum re-mineralizes the carbon providing elemental nutrients for the mixoheterotrophic chlorophyte. The significance of this is uncertain and the archaeon can also subsist entirely on the lysate of apoptotic algae. PCD is now well established in unicellular organisms; however its ecological relevance has been difficult to decipher. In this study we found that PCD in D. salina causes the release of organic nutrients such as glycerol, which can be used by others in the population as well as a co-occurring halophilic archaeon. H. salinarum also re-mineralizes the dissolved material promoting algal growth. PCD in D. salina was the mechanism for the flow of dissolved photosynthate between unrelated organisms. Ironically, programmed death plays a central role in an organism's own population growth and in the exchange of nutrients in the microbial loop. PMID:23667496

  20. Genome-wide examination of myoblast cell cycle withdrawal duringdifferentiation

    SciTech Connect

    Shen, Xun; Collier, John Michael; Hlaing, Myint; Zhang, Leanne; Delshad, Elizabeth H.; Bristow, James; Bernstein, Harold S.

    2002-12-02

    Skeletal and cardiac myocytes cease division within weeks of birth. Although skeletal muscle retains limited capacity for regeneration through recruitment of satellite cells, resident populations of adult myocardial stem cells have not been identified. Because cell cycle withdrawal accompanies myocyte differentiation, we hypothesized that C2C12 cells, a mouse myoblast cell line previously used to characterize myocyte differentiation, also would provide a model for studying cell cycle withdrawal during differentiation. C2C12 cells were differentiated in culture medium containing horse serum and harvested at various time points to characterize the expression profiles of known cell cycle and myogenic regulatory factors by immunoblot analysis. BrdU incorporation decreased dramatically in confluent cultures 48 hr after addition of horse serum, as cells started to form myotubes. This finding was preceded by up-regulation of MyoD, followed by myogenin, and activation of Bcl-2. Cyclin D1 was expressed in proliferating cultures and became undetectable in cultures containing 40 percent fused myotubes, as levels of p21(WAF1/Cip1) increased and alpha-actin became detectable. Because C2C12 myoblasts withdraw from the cell cycle during myocyte differentiation following a course that recapitulates this process in vivo, we performed a genome-wide screen to identify other gene products involved in this process. Using microarrays containing approximately 10,000 minimally redundant mouse sequences that map to the UniGene database of the National Center for Biotechnology Information, we compared gene expression profiles between proliferating, differentiating, and differentiated C2C12 cells and verified candidate genes demonstrating differential expression by RT-PCR. Cluster analysis of differentially expressed genes revealed groups of gene products involved in cell cycle withdrawal, muscle differentiation, and apoptosis. In addition, we identified several genes, including DDAH2 and Ly

  1. Integrated Microfluidic Flow-Through Microbial Fuel Cells.

    PubMed

    Jiang, Huawei; Ali, Md Azahar; Xu, Zhen; Halverson, Larry J; Dong, Liang

    2017-01-25

    This paper reports on a miniaturized microbial fuel cell with a microfluidic flow-through configuration: a porous anolyte chamber is formed by filling a microfluidic chamber with three-dimensional graphene foam as anode, allowing nutritional medium to flow through the chamber to intimately interact with the colonized microbes on the scaffolds of the anode. No nutritional media flow over the anode. This allows sustaining high levels of nutrient utilization, minimizing consumption of nutritional substrates, and reducing response time of electricity generation owing to fast mass transport through pressure-driven flow and rapid diffusion of nutrients within the anode. The device provides a volume power density of 745 μW/cm(3) and a surface power density of 89.4 μW/cm(2) using Shewanella oneidensis as a model biocatalyst without any optimization of bacterial culture. The medium consumption and the response time of the flow-through device are reduced by 16.4 times and 4.2 times, respectively, compared to the non-flow-through counterpart with its freeway space volume six times the volume of graphene foam anode. The graphene foam enabled microfluidic flow-through approach will allow efficient microbial conversion of carbon-containing bioconvertible substrates to electricity with smaller space, less medium consumption, and shorter start-up time.

  2. New applications of carbon nanostructures in microbial fuel cells (MFC)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kaca, W.; Żarnowiec, P.; Keczkowska, Justyna; Suchańska, M.; Czerwosz, E.; Kozłowski, M.

    2014-11-01

    In the studies presented we proposed a new application for nanocomposite carbon films (C-Pd). These films were evaluated as an anode material for Microbial Fuel Cells (MFCs) used for electrical current generation. The results of characterization of C-Pd films composed of carbon and palladium nanograins were obtained using the Physical Vapor Deposition (PVD) method. The film obtained by this method exhibits a multiphase structure composed of fullerene nanograins, amorphous carbon and palladium nanocrystals. Raman Spectroscopy (RS) and scanning electron microscopy (SEM) are used to characterize the chemical composition, morphology and topography of these films. We observed, for MFC with C-Pd anode, the highest electrochemical activity and maximal voltage density - 458 mV (20,8 mV/cm2) for Proteus mirabilis, 426 mV (19,4 mV/cm2) for Pseudomonas aeruginosa and 652 mV (29,6 mV/cm2) for sewage bacteria as the microbial catalyst.

  3. Stimulating sediment bioremediation with benthic microbial fuel cells.

    PubMed

    Li, Wen-Wei; Yu, Han-Qing

    2015-01-01

    Efficient and sustainable technologies for cleaning up of contaminated sediments are under urgent demand. Bioremediation by utilizing the natural metabolic activities of sediment-inhabited microorganisms has been widely accepted as a viable option, but the relatively low efficiency and poor controllability severely limite its application. Here, we bring out the concept that electrochemical approaches may be used as an efficient means to stimulate sediment bioremediation. Although still at the very beginning, benthic microbial fuel cells (BMFC) as a remediation technology show many potential benefits, such as accelerated decontamination, self-sustained operation, relatively easy deployment and control, and environmental benignity. The unique features of BMFC setup and operation also give rise to substantially different challenges compared to conventional MFCs. In this review, we present a critical overview on the characteristics, possible application niches, and state-of-the-art progress of this technology. Especially, the current limitations in respect of system design, electrode selection, microbial control and selection of deployment environment are discussed in details, and the needed future research endeavors to promote its practical application are highlighted.

  4. Control of malodorous hydrogen sulfide compounds using microbial fuel cell.

    PubMed

    Eaktasang, Numfon; Min, Hyeong-Sik; Kang, Christina; Kim, Han S

    2013-10-01

    In this study, a microbial fuel cell (MFC) was used to control malodorous hydrogen sulfide compounds generated from domestic wastewaters. The electricity production demonstrated a distinct pattern of a two-step increase during 170 h of system run: the first maximum current density was 118.6 ± 7.2 mA m⁻² followed by a rebound of current density increase, reaching the second maximum of 176.8 ± 9.4 mA m⁻². The behaviors of the redox potential and the sulfate level in the anode compartment indicated that the microbial production of hydrogen sulfide compounds was suppressed in the first stage, and the hydrogen sulfide compounds generated from the system were removed effectively as a result of their electrochemical oxidation, which contributed to the additional electricity production in the second stage. This was also directly supported by sulfur deposits formed on the anode surface, which was confirmed by analyses on those solids using a scanning electron microscope equipped with energy dispersive X-ray spectroscopy as well as an elemental analyzer. To this end, the overall reduction efficiencies for HS⁻ and H₂S(g) were as high as 67.5 and 96.4 %, respectively. The correlations among current density, redox potential, and sulfate level supported the idea that the electricity signal generated in the MFC can be utilized as a potential indicator of malodor control for the domestic wastewater system.

  5. Electricity generation from tetrathionate in microbial fuel cells by acidophiles.

    PubMed

    Sulonen, Mira L K; Kokko, Marika E; Lakaniemi, Aino-Maija; Puhakka, Jaakko A

    2015-03-02

    Inorganic sulfur compounds, such as tetrathionate, are often present in mining process and waste waters. The biodegradation of tetrathionate was studied under acidic conditions in aerobic batch cultivations and in anaerobic anodes of two-chamber flow-through microbial fuel cells (MFCs). All four cultures originating from biohydrometallurgical process waters from multimetal ore heap bioleaching oxidized tetrathionate aerobically at pH below 3 with sulfate as the main soluble metabolite. In addition, all cultures generated electricity from tetrathionate in MFCs at pH below 2.5 with ferric iron as the terminal cathodic electron acceptor. The maximum current and power densities during MFC operation and in the performance analysis were 79.6 mA m(-2) and 13.9 mW m(-2) and 433 mA m(-2) and 17.6 mW m(-2), respectively. However, the low coulombic efficiency (below 5%) indicates that most of the electrons were directed to other processes, such as aerobic oxidation of tetrathionate and unmeasured intermediates. The microbial community analysis revealed that the dominant species both in the anolyte and on the anode electrode surface of the MFCs were Acidithiobacillus spp. and Ferroplasma spp. This study provides a proof of concept that tetrathionate serves as electron donor for biological electricity production in the pH range of 1.2-2.5.

  6. Integrated Microfluidic Flow-Through Microbial Fuel Cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jiang, Huawei; Ali, Md. Azahar; Xu, Zhen; Halverson, Larry J.; Dong, Liang

    2017-01-01

    This paper reports on a miniaturized microbial fuel cell with a microfluidic flow-through configuration: a porous anolyte chamber is formed by filling a microfluidic chamber with three-dimensional graphene foam as anode, allowing nutritional medium to flow through the chamber to intimately interact with the colonized microbes on the scaffolds of the anode. No nutritional media flow over the anode. This allows sustaining high levels of nutrient utilization, minimizing consumption of nutritional substrates, and reducing response time of electricity generation owing to fast mass transport through pressure-driven flow and rapid diffusion of nutrients within the anode. The device provides a volume power density of 745 μW/cm3 and a surface power density of 89.4 μW/cm2 using Shewanella oneidensis as a model biocatalyst without any optimization of bacterial culture. The medium consumption and the response time of the flow-through device are reduced by 16.4 times and 4.2 times, respectively, compared to the non-flow-through counterpart with its freeway space volume six times the volume of graphene foam anode. The graphene foam enabled microfluidic flow-through approach will allow efficient microbial conversion of carbon-containing bioconvertible substrates to electricity with smaller space, less medium consumption, and shorter start-up time.

  7. Integrated Microfluidic Flow-Through Microbial Fuel Cells

    PubMed Central

    Jiang, Huawei; Ali, Md. Azahar; Xu, Zhen; Halverson, Larry J.; Dong, Liang

    2017-01-01

    This paper reports on a miniaturized microbial fuel cell with a microfluidic flow-through configuration: a porous anolyte chamber is formed by filling a microfluidic chamber with three-dimensional graphene foam as anode, allowing nutritional medium to flow through the chamber to intimately interact with the colonized microbes on the scaffolds of the anode. No nutritional media flow over the anode. This allows sustaining high levels of nutrient utilization, minimizing consumption of nutritional substrates, and reducing response time of electricity generation owing to fast mass transport through pressure-driven flow and rapid diffusion of nutrients within the anode. The device provides a volume power density of 745 μW/cm3 and a surface power density of 89.4 μW/cm2 using Shewanella oneidensis as a model biocatalyst without any optimization of bacterial culture. The medium consumption and the response time of the flow-through device are reduced by 16.4 times and 4.2 times, respectively, compared to the non-flow-through counterpart with its freeway space volume six times the volume of graphene foam anode. The graphene foam enabled microfluidic flow-through approach will allow efficient microbial conversion of carbon-containing bioconvertible substrates to electricity with smaller space, less medium consumption, and shorter start-up time. PMID:28120875

  8. Major contribution of autotrophy to microbial carbon cycling in the deep North Atlantic’s interior

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Reinthaler, Thomas; van Aken, Hendrik M.; Herndl, Gerhard J.

    2010-08-01

    Current estimates point to a mismatch of particulate organic carbon supply derived from the surface ocean and the microbial organic carbon demand in the meso- and bathypelagic realm. Based on recent findings that chemoautotrophic Crenarchaeota are abundant in the mesopelagic zone, we quantified dissolved inorganic carbon (DIC) fixation in the meso- and bathypelagic North Atlantic and compared it with heterotrophic microbial activity. Measuring 14C-bicarbonate fixation and 3H-leucine incorporation revealed that microbial DIC fixation is substantial in the mesopelagic water masses, ranging from 0.1 to 56.7 μmol C m -3 d -1, and is within the same order of magnitude as heterotrophic microbial activity. Integrated over the dark ocean's water column, DIC fixation ranged from 1-2.5 mmol C m -2 d -1, indicating that chemoautotrophy in the dark ocean represents a significant source of autochthonously produced 'new organic carbon' in the ocean's interior amounting to about 15-53% of the phytoplankton export production. Hence, chemoautotrophic DIC fixation in the oxygenated meso- and bathypelagic water column of the North Atlantic might substantially contribute to the organic carbon demand of the deep-water microbial food web.

  9. Large scale spontaneous synchronization of cell cycles in amoebae

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Segota, Igor; Boulet, Laurent; Franck, Carl

    2014-03-01

    Unicellular eukaryotic amoebae Dictyostelium discoideum are generally believed to grow in their vegetative state as single cells until starvation, when their collective aspect emerges and they differentiate to form a multicellular slime mold. While major efforts continue to be aimed at their starvation-induced social aspect, our understanding of population dynamics and cell cycle in the vegetative growth phase has remained incomplete. We show that substrate-growtn cell populations spontaneously synchronize their cell cycles within several hours. These collective population-wide cell cycle oscillations span millimeter length scales and can be completely suppressed by washing away putative cell-secreted signals, implying signaling by means of a diffusible growth factor or mitogen. These observations give strong evidence for collective proliferation behavior in the vegetative state and provide opportunities for synchronization theories beyond classic Kuramoto models.

  10. Grow₂: the HIF system, energy homeostasis and the cell cycle.

    PubMed

    Moniz, Sónia; Biddlestone, John; Rocha, Sónia

    2014-05-01

    Cell cycle progression is an energy demanding process and requires fine-tuned metabolic regulation. Cells must overcome an energy restriction checkpoint before becoming committed to progress through the cell cycle. Aerobic organisms need oxygen for the metabolic conversion of nutrients into energy. As such, environmental oxygen is a critical signalling molecule regulating cell fate. The Hypoxia Inducible Factors (HIFs) are a family of transcription factors that respond to changes in environmental oxygen and cell energy and coordinate a transcriptional program which forms an important part of the cellular response to a hostile environment. A significant proportion of HIF-dependent transcriptional target genes, code for proteins that are involved in energy homeostasis. In this review we discuss the role of the HIF system in the regulation of energy homeostasis in response to changes in environmental oxygen and the impact on cell cycle control, and address the implications of the deregulation of this effect in cancer.

  11. Cinnamomum cassia essential oil and its major constituent cinnamaldehyde induced cell cycle arrest and apoptosis in human oral squamous cell carcinoma HSC-3 cells.

    PubMed

    Chang, Wen-Lun; Cheng, Fu-Chou; Wang, Shu-Ping; Chou, Su-Tze; Shih, Ying

    2017-02-01

    Cinnamomum cassia essential oil (CC-EO) has various functional properties, such as anti-microbial, hypouricemic, anti-tyrosinase and anti-melanogenesis activities. The present study aimed to evaluate the anti-cancer activities of CC-EO and its major constituent, cinnamaldehyde, in human oral squamous cell carcinoma HSC-3 cells. Determination of the cell viability, apoptotic characteristics, DNA damage, cell cycle analysis, reactive oxygen species (ROS) production, mitochondrial membrane potential, cytosolic Ca(2+) level and intracellular redox status were performed. Our results demonstrated that CC-EO and cinnamaldehyde significantly decreased cell viability and caused morphological changes. The cell cycle analysis revealed that CC-EO and cinnamaldehyde induced G2/M cell cycle arrest in HSC-3 cells. The apoptotic characteristics (DNA laddering and chromatin condensation) and DNA damage were observed in the CC-EO-treated and cinnamaldehyde-treated HSC-3 cells. Moreover, CC-EO and cinnamaldehyde promoted an increase in cytosolic Ca(2+) levels, induced mitochondrial dysfunction and activated cytochrome c release. The results of ROS production and intracellular redox status demonstrated that CC-EO and cinnamaldehyde significantly increased the ROS production and thiobarbituric acid reactive substance levels, and the cellular glutathione content and glutathione peroxidase activity were significantly reduced in HSC-3 cells. Our results suggest that CC-EO and cinnamaldehyde may possess anti-oral cancer activity in HSC-3 cells. © 2016 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. Environ Toxicol 32: 456-468, 2017.

  12. Flow cytometry and cell sorting of heterogeneous microbial populations: the importance of single-cell analyses.

    PubMed Central

    Davey, H M; Kell, D B

    1996-01-01

    The most fundamental questions such as whether a cell is alive, in the sense of being able to divide or to form a colony, may sometimes be very hard to answer, since even axenic microbial cultures are extremely heterogeneous. Analyses that seek to correlate such things as viability, which is a property of an individual cell, with macroscopic measurements of culture variables such as ATP content, respiratory activity, and so on, must inevitably fail. It is therefore necessary to make physiological measurements on individual cells. Flow cytometry is such a technique, which allows one to analyze cells rapidly and individually and permits the quantitative analysis of microbial heterogeneity. It therefore offers many advantages over conventional measurements for both routine and more exploratory analyses of microbial properties. While the technique has been widely applied to the study of mammalian cells, is use in microbiology has until recently been much more limited, largely because of the smaller size of microbes and the consequently smaller optical signals obtainable from them. Since these technical barriers no longer hold, flow cytometry with appropriate stains has been used for the rapid discrimination and identification of microbial cells, for the rapid assessment of viability and of the heterogeneous distributions of a wealth of other more detailed physiological properties, for the analysis of antimicrobial drug-cell interactions, and for the isolation of high-yielding strains of biotechnological interest. Flow cytometric analyses provide an abundance of multivariate data, and special methods have been devised to exploit these. Ongoing advances mean that modern flow cytometers may now be used by nonspecialists to effect a renaissance in our understanding of microbial heterogeneity. PMID:8987359

  13. Variety in intracellular diffusion during the cell cycle.

    PubMed

    Selhuber-Unkel, Christine; Yde, Pernille; Berg-Sørensen, Kirstine; Oddershede, Lene B

    2009-07-01

    During the cell cycle, the organization of the cytoskeletal network undergoes dramatic changes. In order to reveal possible changes of the viscoelastic properties in the intracellular space during the cell cycle we investigated the diffusion of endogenous lipid granules within the fission yeast Schizosaccharomyces Pombe using optical tweezers. The cell cycle was divided into interphase and mitotic cell division, and the mitotic cell division was further subdivided in its stages. During all stages of the cell cycle, the granules predominantly underwent subdiffusive motion, characterized by an exponent alpha that is also linked to the viscoelastic moduli of the cytoplasm. The exponent alpha was significantly smaller during interphase than during any stage of the mitotic cell division, signifying that the cytoplasm was more elastic during interphase than during division. We found no significant differences in the subdiffusive exponents from granules measured in different stages of cell division. Also, our results for the exponent displayed no significant dependence on the position of the granule within the cell. The observation that the cytoplasm is more elastic during interphase than during mitotic cell division is consistent with the fact that elastic cytoskeletal elements such as microtubules are less abundantly present during cell division than during interphase.

  14. A comparative evaluation of different types of microbial electrolysis desalination cells for malic acid production.

    PubMed

    Liu, Guangli; Zhou, Ying; Luo, Haiping; Cheng, Xing; Zhang, Renduo; Teng, Wenkai

    2015-12-01

    The aim of this study was to investigate different microbial electrolysis desalination cells for malic acid production. The systems included microbial electrolysis desalination and chemical-production cell (MEDCC), microbial electrolysis desalination cell (MEDC) with bipolar membrane and anion exchange membrane (BP-A MEDC), MEDC with bipolar membrane and cation exchange membrane (BP-C MEDC), and modified microbial desalination cell (M-MDC). The microbial electrolysis desalination cells performed differently in terms of malic acid production and energy consumption. The MEDCC performed best with the highest malic acid production rate (18.4 ± 0.6 mmol/Lh) and the lowest energy consumption (0.35 ± 0.14 kWh/kg). The best performance of MEDCC was attributable to the neutral pH condition in the anode chamber, the lowest internal resistance, and the highest Geobacter percentage of the anode biofilm population among all the reactors.

  15. Neisseria meningitidis causes cell cycle arrest of human brain microvascular endothelial cells at S phase via p21 and cyclin G2.

    PubMed

    Oosthuysen, Wilhelm F; Mueller, Tobias; Dittrich, Marcus T; Schubert-Unkmeir, Alexandra

    2016-01-01

    Microbial pathogens have developed several mechanisms to modulate and interfere with host cell cycle progression. In this study, we analysed the effect of the human pathogen Neisseria meningitidis on cell cycle in a brain endothelial cell line as well as in primary brain endothelial cells. We found that N.  Meningitidis causes an accumulation of cells in the S phase early at 3 and at 24 h post-infection that was paralleled by a decrease of cells in G2/M phase. Importantly, the outer membrane proteins of the colony opacity-associated (Opa) protein family as well as the Opc protein proved to trigger the accumulation of cells in the S phase. A focused cell cycle reverse transcription quantitative polymerase chain reaction-based array and integrated network analysis revealed changes in the abundance of several cell cycle regulatory mRNAs, including the cell cycle inhibitors p21(WAF1/CIP1) and cyclin G2. These alterations were reflected in changes in protein expression levels and/or relocalization in N. meningitidis-infected cells. Moreover, an increase in p21(WAF1/CIP1) expression was found to be p53 independent. Genetic ablation of p21(WAF1/CIP1) and cyclin G2 abrogated N. meningitidis-induced S phase accumulation. Finally, by measuring the levels of the biomarker 8-hydroxydeoxyguanosine and phosphorylation of the histone variant H2AX, we provide evidence that N. meningitidis induces oxidative DNA damage in infected cells.

  16. Cell cycle deregulation by methyl isocyanate: Implications in liver carcinogenesis.

    PubMed

    Panwar, Hariom; Raghuram, Gorantla V; Jain, Deepika; Ahirwar, Alok K; Khan, Saba; Jain, Subodh K; Pathak, Neelam; Banerjee, Smita; Maudar, Kewal K; Mishra, Pradyumna K

    2014-03-01

    Liver is often exposed to plethora of chemical toxins. Owing to its profound physiological role and central function in metabolism and homeostasis, pertinent succession of cell cycle in liver epithelial cells is of prime importance to maintain cellular proliferation. Although recent evidence has displayed a strong association between exposures to methyl isocyanate (MIC), one of the most toxic isocyanates, and neoplastic transformation, molecular characterization of the longitudinal effects of MIC on cell cycle regulation has never been performed. Here, we sequentially delineated the status of different proteins arbitrating the deregulation of cell cycle in liver epithelial cells treated with MIC. Our data reaffirms the oncogenic capability of MIC with elevated DNA damage response proteins pATM and γ-H2AX, deregulation of DNA damage check point genes CHK1 and CHK2, altered expression of p53 and p21 proteins involved in cell cycle arrest with perturbation in GADD-45 expression in the treated cells. Further, alterations in cyclin A, cyclin E, CDK2 levels along with overexpression of mitotic spindle checkpoints proteins Aurora A/B, centrosomal pericentrin protein, chromosomal aberrations, and loss of Pot1a was observed. Thus, MIC impacts key proteins involved in cell cycle regulation to trigger genomic instability as a possible mechanism of developmental basis of liver carcinogenesis.

  17. Duplication of the genome in normal and cancer cell cycles.

    PubMed

    Bandura, Jennifer L; Calvi, Brian R

    2002-01-01

    It is critical to discover the mechanisms of normal cell cycle regulation if we are to fully understand what goes awry in cancer cells. The normal eukaryotic cell tightly regulates the activity of origins of DNA replication so that the genome is duplicated exactly once per cell cycle. Over the last ten years much has been learned concerning the cell cycle regulation of origin activity. It is now clear that the proteins and cell cycle mechanisms that control origin activity are largely conserved from yeast to humans. Despite this conservation, the composition of origins of DNA replication in higher eukaryotes remains ill defined. A DNA consensus for predicting origins has yet to emerge, and it is of some debate whether primary DNA sequence determines where replication initiates. In this review we outline what is known about origin structure and the mechanism of once per cell cycle DNA replication with an emphasis on recent advances in mammalian cells. We discuss the possible relevance of these regulatory pathways for cancer biology and therapy.

  18. A Stress-Induced Small RNA Modulates Alpha-Rhizobial Cell Cycle Progression

    PubMed Central

    Robledo, Marta; Frage, Benjamin; Wright, Patrick R.; Becker, Anke

    2015-01-01

    Mechanisms adjusting replication initiation and cell cycle progression in response to environmental conditions are crucial for microbial survival. Functional characterization of the trans-encoded small non-coding RNA (trans-sRNA) EcpR1 in the plant-symbiotic alpha-proteobacterium Sinorhizobium meliloti revealed a role of this class of riboregulators in modulation of cell cycle regulation. EcpR1 is broadly conserved in at least five families of the Rhizobiales and is predicted to form a stable structure with two defined stem-loop domains. In S. meliloti, this trans-sRNA is encoded downstream of the divK-pleD operon. ecpR1 belongs to the stringent response regulon, and its expression was induced by various stress factors and in stationary phase. Induced EcpR1 overproduction led to cell elongation and increased DNA content, while deletion of ecpR1 resulted in reduced competitiveness. Computationally predicted EcpR1 targets were enriched with cell cycle-related mRNAs. Post-transcriptional repression of the cell cycle key regulatory genes gcrA and dnaA mediated by mRNA base-pairing with the strongly conserved loop 1 of EcpR1 was experimentally confirmed by two-plasmid differential gene expression assays and compensatory changes in sRNA and mRNA. Evidence is presented for EcpR1 promoting RNase E-dependent degradation of the dnaA mRNA. We propose that EcpR1 contributes to modulation of cell cycle regulation under detrimental conditions. PMID:25923724

  19. Outlook for benefits of sediment microbial fuel cells with two bio‐electrodes

    PubMed Central

    De Schamphelaire, Liesje; Rabaey, Korneel; Boeckx, Pascal; Boon, Nico; Verstraete, Willy

    2008-01-01

    Summary The benefits of sediment microbial fuel cells (SMFCs) go beyond energy generation for low‐power applications. Aside from producing electrical energy, SMFCs can enhance the oxidation of reduced compounds at the anode, thus bringing about the removal of excessive or unwanted reducing equivalents from submerged soils. Moreover, an SMFC could be applied to control redox‐dependent processes in sediment layers. Several cathodic reactions that may drive these sediment oxidation reactions are examined. Special attention is given to two biologically mediated cathodic reactions, respectively employing an oxygen reduction and a manganese cycle. Both reactions imply a low cost and a high electrode potential and are of interest for reactor‐type MFCs as well as for SMFCs. PMID:21261866

  20. Scaling up microbial fuel cells and other bioelectrochemical systems.

    PubMed

    Logan, Bruce E

    2010-02-01

    Scientific research has advanced on different microbial fuel cell (MFC) technologies in the laboratory at an amazing pace, with power densities having reached over 1 kW/m(3) (reactor volume) and to 6.9 W/m(2) (anode area) under optimal conditions. The main challenge is to bring these technologies out of the laboratory and engineer practical systems for bioenergy production at larger scales. Recent advances in new types of electrodes, a better understanding of the impact of membranes and separators on performance of these systems, and results from several new pilot-scale tests are all good indicators that commercialization of the technology could be possible within a few years. Some of the newest advances and future challenges are reviewed here with respect to practical applications of these MFCs for renewable energy production and other applications.

  1. Microbial Fuel Cell Possibilities on American Indian Tribal Lands

    SciTech Connect

    Cameron, Kimberlynn

    2016-10-01

    The purpose of this paper is to present a brief background of tribal reservations, the process of how Microbial Fuel Cells (MFCs) work, and the potential benefits of using MFCs on tribal reservations to convert waste water to energy as a means to sustainably generate electricity. There have been no known studies conducted on tribal lands that would be able to add to the estimated percentage of all renewable energy resources identified. Not only does MFC technology provide a compelling, innovative solution, it could also address better management of wastewater, using it as a form of energy generation. Using wastewater for clean energy generation could provide a viable addition to community infrastructure systems improvements.

  2. Carbon nanotube modification of microbial fuel cell electrodes.

    PubMed

    Yazdi, Alireza Ahmadian; D'Angelo, Lorenzo; Omer, Nada; Windiasti, Gracia; Lu, Xiaonan; Xu, Jie

    2016-11-15

    The use of carbon nanotubes (CNTs) for energy harvesting devices is preferable due to their unique mechanical, thermal, and electrical properties. On the other hand, microbial fuel cells (MFCs) are promising devices to recover carbon-neutral energy from the organic matters, and have been hindered with major setbacks towards commercialization. Nanoengineered CNT-based materials show remarkable electrochemical properties, and therefore have provided routes towards highly effective modification of MFC compartments to ultimately reach the theoretical limits of biomass energy recovery, low-cost power production, and thus the commercialization of MFCs. Moreover, these CNT-based composites offer significant flexibility in the design of MFCs that enable their use for a broad spectrum of applications ranging from scaled-up power generation to medically related devices. This article reviews the recent advances in the modification of MFCs using CNTs and CNT-based composites, and the extent to which each modification route impacts MFC power and current generation.

  3. Performance of Denitrifying Microbial Fuel Cell with Biocathode over Nitrite

    PubMed Central

    Zhao, Huimin; Zhao, Jianqiang; Li, Fenghai; Li, Xiaoling

    2016-01-01

    Microbial fuel cell (MFC) with nitrite as an electron acceptor in cathode provided a new technology for nitrogen removal and electricity production simultaneously. The influences of influent nitrite concentration and external resistance on the performance of denitrifying MFC were investigated. The optimal effectiveness were obtained with the maximum total nitrogen (TN) removal rate of 54.80 ± 0.01 g m−3 d−1. It would be rather desirable for the TN removal than electricity generation at lower external resistance. Denaturing gradient gel electrophoresis suggested that Proteobacteria was the predominant phylum, accounting for 35.72%. Thiobacillus and Afipia might benefit to nitrite removal. The presence of nitrifying Devosia indicated that nitrite was oxidized to nitrate via a biochemical mechanism in the cathode. Ignavibacterium and Anaerolineaceae was found in the cathode as a heterotrophic bacterium with sodium acetate as substrate, which illustrated that sodium acetate in anode was likely permeated through proton exchange membrane to the cathode. PMID:27047462

  4. Bi-directional electrical characterisation of microbial fuel cell.

    PubMed

    Degrenne, N; Ledezma, P; Bevilacqua, P; Buret, F; Allard, B; Greenman, J; Ieropoulos, I A

    2013-01-01

    The electrical performance of microbial fuel cells in steady-state is usually investigated by standard characterisation methods that reveal many important parameters e.g. maximum power. This paper introduces a novel "bi-directional" method to study how the acquisition parameters (i.e. sweep rate and sweep regime) can influence measurements and consequently performance estimations. The investigation exhibited considerable differences (hysteresis) between the forward and backward characterisation regimes, indicating a difficulty to reach steady-state under certain conditions. Moreover, it is found that fast sweep rates (time-step of 2 min) can lead to an overestimation of the short-circuit currents, while prolonged operation with high external loads leads to maximum power overestimation and extended conditioning at high currents can result in its underestimation.

  5. Microbial fuel cells: novel biotechnology for energy generation.

    PubMed

    Rabaey, Korneel; Verstraete, Willy

    2005-06-01

    Microbial fuel cells (MFCs) provide new opportunities for the sustainable production of energy from biodegradable, reduced compounds. MFCs function on different carbohydrates but also on complex substrates present in wastewaters. As yet there is limited information available about the energy metabolism and nature of the bacteria using the anode as electron acceptor; few electron transfer mechanisms have been established unequivocally. To optimize and develop energy production by MFCs fully this knowledge is essential. Depending on the operational parameters of the MFC, different metabolic pathways are used by the bacteria. This determines the selection and performance of specific organisms. Here we discuss how bacteria use an anode as an electron acceptor and to what extent they generate electrical output. The MFC technology is evaluated relative to current alternatives for energy generation.

  6. Microbial fuel cell treatment of ethanol fermentation process water

    DOEpatents

    Borole, Abhijeet P [Knoxville, TN

    2012-06-05

    The present invention relates to a method for removing inhibitor compounds from a cellulosic biomass-to-ethanol process which includes a pretreatment step of raw cellulosic biomass material and the production of fermentation process water after production and removal of ethanol from a fermentation step, the method comprising contacting said fermentation process water with an anode of a microbial fuel cell, said anode containing microbes thereon which oxidatively degrade one or more of said inhibitor compounds while producing electrical energy or hydrogen from said oxidative degradation, and wherein said anode is in electrical communication with a cathode, and a porous material (such as a porous or cation-permeable membrane) separates said anode and cathode.

  7. Light energy to bioelectricity: photosynthetic microbial fuel cells.

    PubMed

    Rosenbaum, Miriam; He, Zhen; Angenent, Largus T

    2010-06-01

    Here, we reviewed five different approaches that integrate photosynthesis with microbial fuel cells (MFCs)-photoMFCs. Until now, no conclusive report has been published that identifies direct electron transfer (DET) between a photosynthetic biocatalyst and the anode of a MFC. Therefore, most recent research has been performed to generate sufficient electric current from sunlight with either electrocatalysts or heterotrophic bacteria on the anode to convert photosynthetic products indirectly. The most promising photoMFCs to date are electrocatalytic bioelectrochemical systems (BESs) that convert hydrogen from photosynthesis and sediment-based BESs that can convert excreted organics from cyanobacteria or plants. In addition, illumination on the cathode may provide either oxygen for an electrocatalytic reduction reaction or a promising anoxygenic biocathode.

  8. Increased power density from a spiral wound microbial fuel cell.

    PubMed

    Jia, Boyang; Hu, Dawei; Xie, Beizhen; Dong, Kun; Liu, Hong

    2013-03-15

    Using Microbial fuel cell (MFC) to convert organic and inorganic matter into electricity is of great interest for powering portable devices, which is now still limited by the output of MFC. In this study, a spiral wound MFC (SWMFC) with relatively large volume normalized surface area of separator (4.2 cm(2)/ml) was fabricated to enhance power generation. Compared with double-membrane MFC (DMMFC) and conventional double chamber MFC (DCMFC), the power density of SWMFC increased by 42% and 99% resulted from its lower internal resistance. Besides larger separator area, the better performance of SWMFC benefited from its structure sandwiching the cathodes between two separators. This point was proved again by a comparison of another DCMFC and a triple chamber MFC (TCMFC) as well as a simulation using finite element method. Moreover, the feature of SWMFC was more convenient and compact to scale up. Therefore, SWMFC provides a promising configuration for high power output as a portable power source.

  9. Microfluidic microbial fuel cells: from membrane to membrane free

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yang, Yang; Ye, Dingding; Li, Jun; Zhu, Xun; Liao, Qiang; Zhang, Biao

    2016-08-01

    Microfluidic microbial fuel cells (MMFCs) are small carbon-neutral devices that use self-organized bacteria to degrade organic substrates and harness energy from the waste water. Conventional MMFCs have made great strides in the past decade and have overcome some limitations, such as high capital costs and low energy output. A co-laminar flow MFC has been first proposed in 2011 with the potential to be an attractively power source to niche applications. Co-laminar MFCs typically operate without any physical membranes separating the reactants, and bacterial ecosystems can be easily manipulated by regulating the inlet conditions. This paper highlights recent accomplishments in the development of co-laminar MFCs, emphasizing basic principles, mass transport and fluid dynamics including boundary layer theory, entrance conditions and mixing zone issues. Furthermore, the development of current techniques, major challenges and the potential research directions are discussed.

  10. Fade to Green: A Biodegradable Stack of Microbial Fuel Cells.

    PubMed

    Winfield, Jonathan; Chambers, Lily D; Rossiter, Jonathan; Stinchcombe, Andrew; Walter, X Alexis; Greenman, John; Ieropoulos, Ioannis

    2015-08-24

    The focus of this study is the development of biodegradable microbial fuel cells (MFCs) able to produce useful power. Reactors with an 8 mL chamber volume were designed using all biodegradable products: polylactic acid for the frames, natural rubber as the cation-exchange membrane and egg-based, open-to-air cathodes coated with a lanolin gas diffusion layer. Forty MFCs were operated in various configurations. When fed with urine, the biodegradable stack was able to power appliances and was still operational after six months. One useful application for this truly sustainable MFC technology includes onboard power supplies for biodegradable robotic systems. After operation in remote ecological locations, these could degrade harmlessly into the surroundings to leave no trace when the mission is complete.

  11. Experimenting with microbial fuel cells for powering implanted biomedical devices.

    PubMed

    Roxby, Daniel N; Nham Tran; Pak-Lam Yu; Nguyen, Hung T

    2015-08-01

    Microbial Fuel Cell (MFC) technology has the ability to directly convert sugar into electricity by using bacteria. Such a technology could be useful for powering implanted biomedical devices that require a surgery to replace their batteries every couple of years. In steps towards this, parameters such as electrode configuration, inoculation size, stirring of the MFC and single versus dual chamber reactor configuration were tested for their effect on MFC power output. Results indicate that a Top-Bottom electrode configuration, stirring and larger amounts of bacteria in single chamber MFCs, and smaller amounts of bacteria in dual chamber MFCs give increased power outputs. Finally, overall dual chamber MFCs give several fold larger MFC power outputs.

  12. An insight into cathode options for microbial fuel cells.

    PubMed

    Lefebvre, O; Al-Mamun, A; Ooi, W K; Tang, Z; Chua, D H C; Ng, H Y

    2008-01-01

    Microbial fuel cell (MFC) is an emerging and promising technology, particularly in the field of wastewater treatment. The MFC capability of achieving organic removal and generating in situ electricity could make it an attractive alternative wastewater treatment technology over conventional treatment technologies. However, MFC is still far from being economically viable, especially because of the cost of the platinum (Pt) catalyst that makes possible the reaction at the cathode. In this study, we tested alternative cathode catalysts, namely sputter-deposited Cobalt (Co) and denitrifying bacteria (biocathode). The performance of these innovative cathodes was compared with that of classic Pt-cathodes. Co competed well with Pt, but further research is still required for biocathodes. However, biocathodes MFC have showed promise.

  13. Combined cycle phosphoric acid fuel cell electric power system

    SciTech Connect

    Mollot, D.J.; Micheli, P.L.

    1995-12-31

    By arranging two or more electric power generation cycles in series, combined cycle systems are able to produce electric power more efficiently than conventional single cycle plants. The high fuel to electricity conversion efficiency results in lower plant operating costs, better environmental performance, and in some cases even lower capital costs. Despite these advantages, combined cycle systems for the 1 - 10 megawatt (MW) industrial market are rare. This paper presents a low noise, low (oxides of nitrogen) NOx, combined cycle alternative for the small industrial user. By combining a commercially available phosphoric acid fuel cell (PAFC) with a low-temperature Rankine cycle (similar to those used in geothermal applications), electric conversion efficiencies between 45 and 47 percent are predicted. While the simple cycle PAFC is competitive on a cost of energy basis with gas turbines and diesel generators in the 1 to 2 MW market, the combined cycle PAFC is competitive, on a cost of energy basis, with simple cycle diesel generators in the 4 to 25 MW market. In addition, the efficiency and low-temperature operation of the combined cycle PAFC results in a significant reduction in carbon dioxide emissions with NO{sub x} concentration on the order of 1 parts per million (per weight) (ppmw).

  14. Application of conductive polymers in biocathode of microbial fuel cells and microbial community.

    PubMed

    Li, Chao; Ding, Lili; Cui, Hao; Zhang, Libin; Xu, Ke; Ren, Hongqiang

    2012-07-01

    Four kinds of conductive polymers, polyaniline (PANI) and its co-polymers poly (aniline-co-o-aminophenol) (PANOA), poly (aniline-co-2, 4-diaminophenol) (PANDAP) and poly (aniline-1, 8-diaminonaphthalene) (PANDAN) were applied to modify carbon felts as the aerobic abiotic cathodes and biocathodes in microbial fuel cells (MFC). Compare to unmodified, all the four polymers can significantly improve the power densities for both abiotic cathodes (increased by 300%) and biocathodes (increased by 180%). The co-polymers with different functional groups introduction had further special advantages in MFC performance: PANOA and PANDAP with -OH showed less sensitivity to DO and pH change in cathode; PANDAP and PANDAN with -NH(3) provided better attachment condition for biofilm which endowed them higher power output. With the help of conductive p