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J Ind Microbiol Biotechnol. 2001 Jul;27(1):1-4.

The polar polysaccharide capsule of Hyphomonas adhaerens MHS-3 has a strong affinity for gold.

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Departmento de Ciencias Biológicas, Universidad Santa María La Antigua, PO Box 6-1696, El Dorado, Panama, Panama.


Select groups of bacteria, including prothescate species, have an unusual capacity to sequester gold and bioconcentrate it to very high levels. Hyphomonas adhaerens MHS-3 (MHS-3) is one such species, as demonstrated by Energy Dispersive Spectroscopy. Transmission electron microscopy revealed that the binding site was specific on the polar polysaccharide capsule. A capsuleless mutant and periodate-treated wild type did not sequester gold. The gold may interact with the same sites in the capsule that naturally adhere MHS-3 to surfaces in the marine environment.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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