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Appl Environ Microbiol. 1991 Aug;57(8):2229-32.

Anaerobic growth of microorganisms with chlorate as an electron acceptor.

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  • 1ANOX AB, Ideon Research Park, S-223 70 Lund, and Department of Applied Microbiology, University of Lund, S-221 00 Lund, Sweden.


The ability of microorganisms to use chlorate (ClO(3)) as an electron acceptor for respiration under anaerobic conditions was studied in batch and continuous tests. Complex microbial communities were cultivated anaerobically in defined media containing chlorate, all essential minerals, and acetate as the sole energy and carbon source. It was shown that chlorate was reduced to chloride, while acetate was oxidized to carbon dioxide and water and used as the carbon source for synthesis of new biomass. A biomass yield of 1.9 to 3.8 g of volatile suspended solids per equivalent of available electrons was obtained, showing that anaerobic growth with chlorate as an electron acceptor gives a high energy yield. This indicates that microbial reduction of chlorate to chloride in anaerobic systems is coupled with electron transport phosphorylation.

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