Facebook PixelList of microbial species that can eat unusual stuff
Brainstorming
Brainstorming
Create newCreate new
EverythingEverything
Sessions onlySessions only
Ideas onlyIdeas only
Brainstorming session

List of microbial species that can eat unusual stuff

Image credit: Microbe World / ccsearch

Loading...
Darko Savic
Darko Savic Oct 13, 2020
Please leave the feedback on this session
Necessity

Is the problem still unsolved?

Conciseness

Is it concisely described?

What are some unusual substances that microbes can use as food?

Name the species and its superpower - what it can convert to energy.

Browsing through such a list can spark future ideas.
13
Creative contributions

Cupriavidus metallidurans "poops" gold

Loading...
J
Juran Oct 14, 2020
The mentioned bacteria lives in soil enriched with heavy metals. In order to survive, it developed a Cu/Au "neutralization" and export mechanism, which result in small gold nuggets known as the "secondary gold".

[1]https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2018/01/180131095453.htm

Please leave the feedback on this
Loading...
Darko Savic
Darko Savica year ago
Time to get me some Cupriavidus - for research purposes of course:)
Please leave the feedback on this

Hello Predatory Bacteria, Bye Bye E.coli!

Loading...
CS
Clay Sky Oct 14, 2020
Bdellovibrio bacteriovorus which favours aquatic habitats and soil are most interesting because of the fine sport it makes of cells called, gram negative bacteria. These bacteria are responsible for many infectious diseases that are to this day resistant to current antibiotics. Bdellovibrio bacteriovorus does this by attaching and then entering its prey instead of just hanging on the outside. It drills its way in by producing enzymes that digest the outer covering of its prey as it rotates. For the grand finale, it reproduces inside its prey and then destroys it.

It can swim at a rate of 100 cell lengths per second and is one of the fastest-moving of all known bacteria.

[1]https://owlcation.com/stem/Unusual-Bacteria-Strange-Facts-About-Fascinating-Microbes

Please leave the feedback on this
Loading...
Darko Savic
Darko Savica year ago
At that speed there's no getting away from it:) It's even present within the human gut (Iebba et al., 2013) and being studied as a potential therapeutic candidate.
Please leave the feedback on this

Rhodopseudomonas palustris TIE-1 uses electricity to survive

Loading...
Shubhankar Kulkarni
Shubhankar Kulkarni Oct 14, 2020
Is there anything bacteria can't digest?!
Phototrophic microbes accept electrons from solid or soluble materials. Researchers showed that the naturally occurring strain of Rhodopseudomonas palustris TIE-1 builds a channel across its outer membrane to accept electrons. An iron-containing helper molecule - deca-heme cytochrome C assists in the process. Electrons then pass from an outside source into the microbe. The reseachers used electrodes to supply electrons to the microbes. Extracellular electron uptake helps these microbes to survive under nutrient-deficient conditions. Other bacteria that consume electricitiy:
  1. Shewanella oneidensis
  2. Geobacter metallireducens
  3. There are other species being studied, too.
Electric bacteria could be modified and harnessed to perform a number of functions like creating biological fuel.

[1]Gupta D, Sutherland MC, Rengasamy K, Meacham JM, Kranz RG, Bose A. Photoferrotrophs Produce a PioAB Electron Conduit for Extracellular Electron Uptake. Komeili A, editor. MBio [Internet]. 2019 Nov 5;10(6). Available from: https://mbio.asm.org/content/10/6/e02668-19

[2]https://www.popsci.com/have-we-found-alien-life/#page-4

[3]https://earthsky.org/earth/scientists-study-bacteria-that-eat-and-breathe-electricity

[4]Mohamed A, Ha PT, Peyton BM, Mueller R, Meagher M, Beyenal H. In situ enrichment of microbial communities on polarized electrodes deployed in alkaline hot springs. J Power Sources [Internet]. 2019 Feb;414:547–56. Available from: https://linkinghub.elsevier.com/retrieve/pii/S0378775319300291

Please leave the feedback on this

A number of bacterial strains that can digest xenobiotics!

Loading...
Subash Chapagain
Subash Chapagain Oct 13, 2020
Xenobiotics are the materials foreign to the living systems and the ecological world in general. Mostly, the major pollutants like petroleums, plastic and other synthetic compounds are difficult to degrade and persist for a long period of time in the environment. Thankfully, a range of microbial species have been identified that could be used for using some of the xenobiotics as their energy sources thereby degrading these pollutant chemicals/molecules into less toxic ones. This paper has identified some of these xenobiotics degrading strains.
Please leave the feedback on this

Pseudomonas putida can eat styrofoam

Loading...
Darko Savic
Darko Savic Oct 13, 2020
Pseudomonas putida was the first patented organism in the world. Its diverse metabolism among other things is capable of converting polystyrene (styrofoam) into a biodegradable thermoplastic.

[1]https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2006/02/060224104603.htm

Please leave the feedback on this

How about fungal bioremediation?

Loading...
Subash Chapagain
Subash Chapagain Oct 13, 2020
Fungal bioremediation is a promising technology using the metabolic potential of fungi to degrade xenobiotics. Basidiomycetes are one such unique microorganisms that show high capacities of degrading a wide range of toxic xenobiotics. They act via the extracellular ligninolytic enzymes, including laccase, manganese peroxidase, and lignin peroxidase. Their capacities to remove xenobiotic substances and produce polymeric products make them a useful tool for bioremediation purposes. During fungal remediation, they utilize hazardous compounds, even the insoluble ones, as the nutrient source and convert them to simple fragmented forms. Basidiomycetes are deemed to degrade xenobiotics by using the Laccase enzyme .

[1]https://www.intechopen.com/books/management-of-hazardous-wastes/white-rot-fungi-and-their-enzymes-as-a-biotechnological-tool-for-xenobiotic-bioremediation

Please leave the feedback on this

Pseudomonas aeruginosa can digest alkane oils from sea-water in presence of rhamnolipids

Loading...
Subash Chapagain
Subash Chapagain Oct 13, 2020
This strain of P. aeruginosa GOM1 aeruginosa strain GOM1, which was isolated from the water column in the southwestern Gulf of Mexico was capable of degrading long-chain alkanes, one of the major pollutant family of molecules.. This strain degraded 96% of the aliphatic fraction (C12–C38) of crude oil during a 30-day incubation period, exhibiting a high activity on long-chain alkanes, and expressing alkane hydroxylases AlkB1, AlkB2 and AlmA. Addition of nitrogen and phosphate to seawater culture medium enhanced hexadecane degradation by GOM1.

[1]https://www.frontiersin.org/articles/10.3389/fmars.2019.00572/full

Please leave the feedback on this

Nylon-eating Flavobacterium sp. K172

Loading...
Jamila
Jamila Oct 13, 2020
Bacterial species that eat nylon byproducts exist! Flavobacterium sp. K172 is the most prominent "nylon-eating bacteria". It was discovered in 1975 by Japanese researchers. Flavobacterium sp. K172 digests byproducts of nylon 6. Specifically, this bacterial species uses 3 enzymes to break down the nylon byproducts into adipate.



[1]Takehara, Ikki, et al. "Metabolic pathway of 6-aminohexanoate in the nylon oligomer-degrading bacterium Arthrobacter sp. KI72: identification of the enzymes responsible for the conversion of 6-aminohexanoate to adipate." Applied microbiology and biotechnology 102.2 (2018): 801-814.

Please leave the feedback on this

Methylococcus capsulatus digests methane

Loading...
Jamila
Jamila Oct 13, 2020
In the ocean somewhere, there are methanotrophic bacteria. Methanotrophic bacteria survive by breaking down methane and using it to make energy! Specifically, they use an enzyme called methane monooxygenase. Notable methanotrophs include Methylococcus capsulatus, Methylosinus trichosporium, Methylomonas methanica, and there are many more. As methane levels play a significant role in global warming, these bacteria could be useful for that.

[1]Jiang, Hao, et al. "Methanotrophs: multifunctional bacteria with promising applications in environmental bioengineering." Biochemical Engineering Journal 49.3 (2010): 277-288.

Please leave the feedback on this

Halomonas titanicae

Loading...
Darko Savic
Darko Savic Nov 21, 2020
As the name implies, H. Titanicae was first discovered feeding on Titanic's shipwreck:) They thrive in salt water and eat rusty steel and iron.

[1]Halomonas titanicae sp. nov., a halophilic bacterium isolated from the RMS Titanic | Microbiology Society https://doi.org/10.1099/ijs.0.020628-0

Please leave the feedback on this

Rhodobacter sphaeroides can eat formaldehyde

Loading...
Darko Savic
Darko Savic Oct 13, 2020
When Rhodobacter sphaeroides senses the presence of formaldehyde, it deploys specialized enzymes that convert it to harmless breakdown products.

[1]https://news.wisc.edu/microbe-eats-formaldehyde/

Please leave the feedback on this

Geobacter metallireducens can eat metals (Uranium too)

Loading...
Darko Savic
Darko Savic Oct 13, 2020
Geobacter metallireducens lives In sediments and freshwater environments has the ability to reduce metals such as iron which can help clear water supplies of metallic waste.

Geobacter metallireducens GS-15 can metabolize oil-based pollutants while only excreted CO2.

Once its job is done and all the nutrients are depleted, it will produce a flagellum and paddle away:)

[1]https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Geobacter_metallireducens

Please leave the feedback on this

Ideonella sakaiensis digests plastic

Loading...
Shubhankar Kulkarni
Shubhankar Kulkarni Oct 14, 2020
Will this solve most of our waste problems? Shosuke Yoshida and colleagues identified an organism that eats plastic in 2016. They screened for natural microbial communities exposed to poly(ethylene terephthalate) (PET) in the environment, and viola! - found Ideonella sakaiensis 201-F6, which uses PET as its major energy and carbon source. PET is the most common polymer resin. When grown on PET, this strain produces two enzymes that hydrolyze PET. They convert PET efficiently into its environmentally friendly monomers - terephthalic acid and ethylene glycol.

[1]Shosuke Yoshida, Kazumi Hiraga, Toshihiko Takehana, Ikuo Taniguchi, Hironao Yamaji, Yasuhito Maeda, Kiyotsuna Toyohara, Kenji Miyamoto, Yoshiharu Kimura, Kohei Oda. A bacterium that degrades and assimilates poly(ethylene terephthalate). Science. 2016 Mar 11;351(6278):1196-9. doi: 10.1126/science.aad6359.

Please leave the feedback on this

Add your creative contribution

0 / 200

Added via the text editor

Sign up or

or

Guest sign up

* Indicates a required field

By using this platform you agree to our terms of service and privacy policy.

General comments