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Antonie Van Leeuwenhoek. 2006 Apr-May;89(3-4):395-403. Epub 2006 Apr 19.

Halomonas maura is a physiologically versatile bacterium of both ecological and biotechnological interest.

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Department of Microbiology, University of Granada, Campus Universitario de Cartuja s/n, 18071, Granada, Spain.


Halomonas maura is a bacterium of great metabolic versatility. We summarise in this work some of the properties that make it a very interesting microorganism both from an ecological and biotechnological point of view. It plays an active role in the nitrogen cycle, is capable of anaerobic respiration in the presence of nitrate and has recently been identified as a diazotrophic bacterium. Of equal interest is mauran, the exopolysaccharide produced by H. maura, which contributes to the formation of biofilms and thus affords the bacterium advantages in the colonisation of its saline niches. Mauran is highly viscous, shows thixotropic and pseudoplastic behaviour, has the capacity to capture heavy metals and exerts a certain immunomodulator effect in medicine. All these attributes have prompted us to make further investigations into its molecular characteristics. To date we have described 15 open reading frames (ORF's) related to exopolysaccharide production, nitrogen fixation and nitrate reductase activity among others.

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