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J Am Chem Soc. 2006 Aug 30;128(34):11188-98.

Manganese oxides: parallels between abiotic and biotic structures.

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  • 1Department of Chemistry, Northwestern University, Evanston, Illinois 60208, USA.


A large number of microorganisms are responsible for the oxidation of Mn(2+)((aq)) to insoluble Mn(3+/4+) oxides (MnO(x)()) in natural aquatic systems. This paper reports the structure of the biogenic MnO(x)(), including a quantitative analysis of cation vacancies, formed by the freshwater bacterium Leptothrix discophora SP6 (SP6-MnO(x)()). The structure and the morphology of SP6-MnO(x)() were characterized by transmission electron microscopy (TEM), X-ray absorption spectroscopy (XAS), including full multiple-scattering analysis, and powder X-ray diffraction (XRD). The biogenic precipitate consists of nanoparticles that are approximately 10 nm by 100 nm in dimension with a fibrillar morphology that resembles twisted sheets. The results dem-onstrate that this biogenic MnO(x)() is composed of sheets of edge-sharing of Mn(4+)O(6) octahedra that form layers. The detailed analysis of the EXAFS spectra indicate that 12 +/- 4% of the Mn(4+) layer cation sites in SP6-MnO(x)() are vacant, whereas the analysis of the XANES suggests that the average oxidation state of Mn is 3.8 +/- 0.3. Therefore, the average chemical formula of SP6-MnO(x)() is M(n)()(+)(y)()Mn(3+)(0.12)[ square(0.12)Mn(4+)(0.88)]O(2).zH(2)O, where M(n)()(+)(y)() represents hydrated interlayer cations, square(0.12) represents Mn(4+) cation vacancies within the layer, and Mn(3+)(0.12) represents hydrated cations that occupy sites above/below these cation vacancies.

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