2023 27 B1

Aquificales Sulfur Oxidation

By: Raxelle Atela

Department: Biology

Faculty Advisor: Dr. José R. De La Torre

All organisms need energy which they can acquire through a number of different ways. Bacteria, in particular, obtain energy from oxidation of organic compounds. Bacterial energy production involves electron donors such as hydrogen, carbon monoxide, ammonia, nitrite, sulfur, sulfide, and ferrous iron, and electron acceptors such as oxygen, nitrate, iron (III), manganese (IV), sulfate, carbon dioxide. As a class, we are currently studying 6 Aquificales: Hydrogenothermus cadilitoris, Hydrogeobacter hydrogenophilus, Thermocrinis minervae, Hydrogenothermus marinus, Persephonella hydrogeniphilia, and Venevibrio stagnispumatntis. Sulfur is an electron donor therefore I will be mainly focusing on this factor of energy metabolism. These 6 Aquificales are classified as thermophilic bacteria and are found in thermal springs and marine hydrothermal areas; I am particularly interested in sulfur as it is a prominent element in such locations. I want to know the importance of sulfur as an electron donor in terms of energy metabolism. For my project, my topic of research will be focused on these 6 Aquificales to get a better understanding of sulfur oxidation as a mechanism for energy production. Using tools such as KEGG, MetaCyc, and Integrated Microbial Genomes (IMG) database, I will be finding what genes and pathways are involved in energy production for each of the 6 Aquificales and compare them with each other and present the information that I am able to gather.