SUMMARY: The heat evolved by growing Nitrobacter is a measure of its efficiency of free energy utilization which is related to the apparent molar heat of substrate oxidation. The maximum free energy efficiency was about 50 % of a total free energy change of --17.5 kcal./mole. The molar growth yield decreased rapidly with the age from 10 to 3 x 10 organisms/mole substrate. The free energy needed for the synthesis of one Nitrobacter varied from 0.45 nanoca-lories at the onset of growth to 2.9 at later stages. From these values and the bacterial enthalpy content its negentropy content can be calculated.


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