Natures wonders: charged bacteria. (Introduction)

by David Turell @, Saturday, February 14, 2015, 05:11 (1830 days ago) @ David Turell
edited by dhw, Saturday, February 14, 2015, 09:42

Ten different types live only on electrons:

"These special bacteria, however, don't need no p[r]oxy sugars — instead, they cut out the middleman and feed directly on electrons. To discover these bacteria, and to cultivate them in the lab, the USC biologists quite simply scooped up some sediment from the ocean, took it back to the lab, stuck some electrodes into it, and then turned on the power. When higher voltages are pumped into the water, the bacteria “eats” electrons from the electrode; when a lower voltage is present, the bacteria “exhales” electrons onto the electrode, creating an electrical current (which could be used to power a device, if you were so inclined). The USC study very carefully controlled for other sources of nutrition — these bacteria were definitely eating electrons directly.

"The ten varieties discovered so far are not from the same family, and are not related to Shewanella or Geobacter, which also feature “interesting electrical properties.” So this is convergent evolution."

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