From a Russian volcanic island, a hot new find
Take a pot of scalding water, remove all the oxygen, mix in a bit of poisonous carbon monoxide, and add a pinch of hydrogen gas. It sounds like a recipe for a witchs brew. It may be, but it is also the preferred environment for a microbe known as Carboxydothermus hydrogenoformans.
In a paper published in the November 27th issue of PLoS Genetics, a research team led by scientists at The Institute for Genomic Research (TIGR) report the determination and analysis of the complete genome sequence of this organism. Isolated from a hot spring on the Russian volcanic island of Kunashir, this microbe lives almost entirely on carbon monoxide. While consuming this normally poisonous gas, the microbe mixes it with water, producing hydrogen gas as waste.
Kathryn Brown | EurekAlert!
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