Send to

Choose Destination
See comment in PubMed Commons below
Appl Environ Microbiol. 1996 Sep;62(9):3424-31.

Sulfur chemistry in bacterial leaching of pyrite.


In the case of pyrite bioleaching by Leptospirillum ferrooxidans, an organism without sulfur-oxidizing capacity, besides the production of tetra- and pentathionate, a considerable accumulation of elemental sulfur occurred. A similar result was obtained for chemical oxidation assays with acidic, sterile iron(III) ion-containing solutions. In the case of Thiobacillus ferrooxidans, only slight amounts of elemental sulfur were detectable because of the organism's capacity to oxidize sulfur compounds. In the course of oxidative, chemical pyrite degradation under alkaline conditions, the accumulation of tetrathionate, trithionate, and thiosulfate occurred. The data indicate that thiosulfate, trithionate, tetrathionate, and disulfane-monosulfonic acid are key intermediate sulfur compounds in oxidative pyrite degradation. A novel (cyclic) leaching mechanism is proposed which basically is indirect.

PubMed Commons home

PubMed Commons

How to join PubMed Commons

    Supplemental Content

    Full text links

    Icon for HighWire Icon for PubMed Central
    Loading ...
    Write to the Help Desk