Studies in Microbial Chemotactic Behavior in Seawater. I. A Technique for Isolation of Specific Marine Chemotactic Bacteria. II. The Relationship between Molecular Structure of Attractants and Chemotaxis. III. Retardation of Organic Matter Decomposition Associated with Inhibition of Bacterial Chemotaxis in Polluted Seawater.
HARVARD UNIV CAMBRIDGE MASS DIV OF ENGINEERING AND APPLIED PHYSICS
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Research is described on detrimental effects on marine microbial processes of sub-lethal concentrations of pollutants. A technique is outlined for isolation of specific marine chemotactic bacteria capable of both finding a chemical and utilizing it as a substrate. This technique enables one to define the role of chemotaxis in the spatial location of food in seawater. The results of a study of the relationship between chemical structures of attractants and chemotaxis by marine bacteria are presented. The data reveal that in marine pseudomonads there is no specificity for D, L, or DL amino acids. However, the bacteria cannot detect chemical analogs of the amino acids. Similarly, bacteria that were attracted to glucose were incapable of chemotaxis to analogs of glucose. Other research described in this report involved a study of the effects of sub-lethal concentrations of petroleum hydrocarbons on organic matter decomposition in seawater. The data showed that when the hydrocarbons were added to seawater they blocked bacterial chemotaxis at a concentration of between one and three mgl without affecting bacterial viability.
- Biological Oceanography
- Water Pollution and Control