Most representatives of the halophilic arachaeobacterial genera Halobacterium, Haloarcula and Haloferax tested were able to reduce dimethylsulfoxide (DMSO) to dimethylsulfide (DMS) and trimethylamine N-oxide (TMAO) to trimethylamine (TMA) under (semi)anaerobic conditions. In most cases the reduction of DMSO and TMAO was accompanied by an increase in cell yield. The ability to reduce DMSO or TMAO was not correlated to reduced DMSO or TMAO was not correlated with the ability to reduce nitrate to nitrite. Anaerobic respiration with DMSO and TMAO as electron acceptor supplies the halophilic archeobacteria with an additional mode of energy generation in the absence of molecular oxygen.
Bibliographical noteFunding Information:
We thank Z. Aizenshtat and N. Efiahu for their assistance in the use of the gas chromatograph, and F. Rodriguez-Valera for his contribution of bacterial strains. This research was supported by a grant from the GIF, the German-Israeli Foundation for Scientific Research and Development.
- Anaerobic growth
- Trimethylamine N-oxide