Microbes and Toxins, Oh My.

This recent article in Science Daily tells of a bacteria that “breathes” poisons, like antimony and arsenic. It also reduces contaminants, like selenium and tellurium, often found in wastewater from mines and refineries. Isolated from Mono Lake by researchers from the University of Georgia, this bacteria enjoys hot, high salt environments. Interesting implications of this bacteria’s abilities are that it can be used for cleaning up polluted waters and for industry use to refine pure elements, a somewhat ironic juxtaposition of its potential use for humans.

What goes in helps the environment, and what comes out helps industry.

The source publication can be found here.

Microbes and Toxins

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Alex Alexiev

Alex Alexiev is a recent UC Davis graduate with a BS in microbiology working in Jonathan Eisen’s lab on aquariums as part of the microbiology of the built environment.