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Appl Environ Microbiol. 1985 Mar;49(3):556-62.

Influence of Manganese on Growth of a Sheathless Strain of Leptothrix discophora.

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  • 1Department of Microbiology, Cornell University, Ithaca, New York 14853.

Abstract

Mn exerted various effects on the growth of Leptothrix discophora strain SS-1 in batch cultures depending on the concentration added to the medium. Concentrations of 0.55 to 5.5 muM Mn, comparable to those in the environment from which strain SS-1 was isolated, decreased cell yield and prolonged stationary-phase survival, but did not affect growth rate. Elevated concentrations of 55 to 910 muM Mn also decreased cell yield and prolonged survival, but growth rate was decreased as well. The addition of 1,820 muM Mn caused a decline in cell numbers followed by an exponential rise after 80 h of incubation, indicating the development of a population of cells resistant to Mn toxicity. When 360 muM Mn or less was added to growth flasks, Mn was oxidized to manganese oxide (MnO(x), where x is approximately 2), which appeared as brown particles in the medium. Quantification of Mn oxidation during growth of cultures to which 55 muM Mn was added showed that nearly all of the Mn was oxidized by the beginning of the stationary phase of growth (15 to 25 h). This result suggested that the decrease in cell yield observed at low and moderate concentrations of Mn was related to the formation of MnO(x), which may have bound cationic nutrients essential to the growth of SS-1. The addition of excess Fe to cultures containing 55 muM Mn increased cell yield to levels near those found in cultures with no added Mn, indicating that iron deprivation by MnO(x) was at least partly responsible for the decreased cell yield.

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