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J Bacteriol. 1992 Sep;174(17):5489-95.

Methane from acetate.

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Department of Anaerobic Microbiology, Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University, Blacksburg 24061-0305.


The general features are known for the pathway by which most methane is produced in nature. All acetate-utilizing methanogenic microorganisms contain CODH which catalyzes the cleavage of acetyl-CoA; however, the pathway differs from all other acetate-utilizing anaerobes in that the methyl group is reduced to methane with electrons derived from oxidation of the carbonyl group of acetyl-CoA to CO2. The current understanding of the methanogenic fermentation of acetate provides impressions of nature's novel solutions to problems of methyl transfer, electron transport, and energy conservation. The pathway is now at a level of understanding that will permit productive investigations of these and other interesting questions in the near future.

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