Microorganisms in High‐Temperature Sulfur Environments

Abstract

Sulfur‐rich high‐temperature environments such as solfataric fields, hot springs and ‘black smokers’ provide habitats for microbial life at the upper temperature border. Such regions have yielded extremely and hyperthermophilic bacteria and archaea that grow optimally at temperatures above 70 °C, some even above 100 °C.

Key Concepts

  • Hyperthermophilic and extremely thermophilic bacteria and archaea thrive at high temperature, up to boiling point of water.
  • They are phylogenetically and metabolically diverse.
  • They represent deepest phylogenetic linages in prokaryotes.
  • They perform closed sulfur cycle in thermal environments.
  • The highest growth temperature is the capacity of microorganisms inhabiting deep‐sea hot vents.

Keywords: thermophiles; hyperthermophiles; hot springs; deep‐sea hydrothermal vents; sulfur cycle

Figure 1. 16S rRNA‐based phylogenetic tree (schematic drawing; lineages of hyperthermophiles in bold lines).
Figure 2. Growth of Aquificales in a high‐temperature hot spring.
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Further Reading

Anitory RP (ed.) (2012) Extremophiles: Microbiology and Biotechnology. Caister Academic Press.

Stetter KO (1992) Life at the upper temperature border. In: Van Tran Thanh JK, Mounolou JC, Schneider J and McKay C (eds) Frontiers of Life, pp 195–219. Editions Frontières: Gif‐sur‐Yvette, France.

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Satyanarayana T, Littlechild J and Kawarabayashi Y (eds) (2013) Thermophilic Microbes in Environmental and Industrial Biotechnology, 2nd edn. Springer: Dordrecht, Netherlands.

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How to Cite close
Bonch‐Osmolovskaya, Elizaveta(May 2020) Microorganisms in High‐Temperature Sulfur Environments. In: eLS. John Wiley & Sons Ltd, Chichester. http://www.els.net [doi: 10.1002/9780470015902.a0000405.pub3]