SUMMARY: Streptomycetes and aerobic bacteria able to utilize cysteic acid and taurine as sole sources of energy, nitrogen and sulphur were isolated from soil materials. None of the isolated fungi did this. The bacterium which was used in most experiments grew on both compounds. The sulphur of the compounds was recovered as sulphate and most of the nitrogen as ammonia after breakdown by growing or pregrown organisms. A significant portion of the nitrogen was assimilated by the growing organisms. Sulphite appeared as a transitory sulphur product. Deamination preceded desulphuration in early periods of incubation; the reactions were brought about by adaptive enzyme systems. Dissimilation of cysteic acid by pregrown organisms was maximum at reactions close to neutrality. During development of pregrown organisms at pH 8.5 and 9.0 appreciable amounts of sulphite were detected. Acid reactions which inhibited development of the cultures were produced during decomposition of taurine.


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