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Res Microbiol. 2003 Jul-Aug;154(6):399-407.

Oxalotrophic bacteria.

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  • Mugla Universitesi, Egitim Fakultesi, Biyoloji Egitimi Anabilim Dali, TR-48170 K├Âtekli, Mugla, Turkey. nsahin@mu.edu.tr


Oxalic acid and its salts are widespread in nature, as they are produced by many species of plants, algae and fungi. The bacteria, which are capable of using oxalate as a sole carbon and energy source, are described as being "oxalotrophic". Oxalotrophic bacteria do not constitute a homogeneous taxonomic group, but they do constitute a well-defined physiological group. A limited number of aerobic bacteria which are able to utilize oxalate as sole carbon and energy source have been completely described. Most of them are facultative methylotrophs and/or facultative hydrogen-oxidizing chemolithoautotrophs. In this review, the current status of the taxonomy and biodiversity of oxalotrophic bacteria in various environments, and aspects of their biotechnological potential, are briefly summarized.

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