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Int J Syst Evol Microbiol. 2005 Jul;55(Pt 4):1667-74.

Geobacter bemidjiensis sp. nov. and Geobacter psychrophilus sp. nov., two novel Fe(III)-reducing subsurface isolates.

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Department of Microbiology, University of Massachusetts Amherst, MA 01003, USA.


Fe(III)-reducing isolates were recovered from two aquifers in which Fe(III) reduction is known to be important. Strain Bem(T) was enriched from subsurface sediments collected in Bemidji, MN, USA, near a site where Fe(III) reduction is important in aromatic hydrocarbon degradation. Strains P11, P35(T) and P39 were isolated from the groundwater of an aquifer in Plymouth, MA, USA, in which Fe(III) reduction is important because of long-term inputs of acetate as a highway de-icing agent to the subsurface. All four isolates were Gram-negative, slightly curved rods that grew best in freshwater media. Strains P11, P35(T) and P39 exhibited motility via means of monotrichous flagella. Analysis of the 16S rRNA and nifD genes indicated that all four strains are delta-proteobacteria and members of the Geobacter cluster of the Geobacteraceae. Differences in phenotypic and phylogenetic characteristics indicated that the four isolates represent two novel species within the genus Geobacter. All of the isolates coupled the oxidation of acetate to the reduction of Fe(III) [iron(III) citrate, amorphous iron(III) oxide, iron(III) pyrophosphate and iron(III) nitrilotriacetate]. All four strains utilized ethanol, lactate, malate, pyruvate and succinate as electron donors and malate and fumarate as electron acceptors. Strain Bem(T) grew fastest at 30 degrees C, whereas strains P11, P35(T) and P39 grew equally well at 17, 22 and 30 degrees C. In addition, strains P11, P35(T) and P39 were capable of growth at 4 degrees C. The names Geobacter bemidjiensis sp. nov. (type strain Bem(T)=ATCC BAA-1014(T)=DSM 16622(T)=JCM 12645(T)) and Geobacter psychrophilus sp. nov. (strains P11, P35(T) and P39; type strain P35(T)=ATCC BAA-1013(T)=DSM 16674(T)=JCM 12644(T)) are proposed.

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