Oxidation of ferrous iron was studied with the anaerobic phototrophic bacterial strain BS-1. Based on morphology, substrate utilization patterns, arrangement of intracytoplasmic membranes and the absorption spectrum, this strain was assigned to the known species . Also, the type strain of this species oxidized ferrous iron in the light. Phototrophic growth of strain BS-1 with ferrous iron as electron donor was stimulated by the presence of acetate or succinate as cosubstrates. The ferric iron hydroxides produced precipitated on the cell surfaces as solid crusts which impeded further iron oxidation after two to three generations. The complexing agent nitrilotriacetate stimulated iron oxidation but the yield of cell mass did not increase stoichiometrically under these conditions. Other complexing agents inhibited cell growth. Ferric iron was not reduced in the dark, and manganese salts were neither oxidized nor reduced. It is concluded that ferrous iron oxidation by strain BS-1 is only a side activity of this bacterium that cannot support growth exclusively with this electron source over prolonged periods of time.


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