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Annu Rev Microbiol. 2006;60:149-66.

Uranium reduction.

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Biochemistry and Molecular Microbiology & Immunology, University of Missouri-Columbia, Columbia, Missouri 65211, USA.


The dramatic decrease in solubility accompanying the reduction of U(VI) to U(IV), producing the insoluble mineral uraninite, has been viewed as a potential mechanism for sequestration of environmental uranium contamination. In the past 15 years, it has been firmly established that a variety of bacteria exhibit this reductive capacity. To obtain an understanding of the microbial metal metabolism, to develop a practical approach for the acceleration of in situ bioreduction, and to predict the long-term fate of environmental uranium, several aspects of the microbial process have been experimentally explored. This review briefly addresses the research to identify specific uranium reductases and their cellular location, competition between uranium and other electron acceptors, attempts to stimulate in situ reduction, and mechanisms of reoxidation of reduced uranium minerals.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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