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Thermoacidophiles Essay

A thermoacidophile (combination of thermophile and acidophile ) is an extreme archaebacteria which thrives in acids, sulfur rich, high temperature environments. Thermoacidophiles prefer temperatures of 70 – 80 C and pH between 2 and 3. They live mostly in hot springs and/or within deep ocean vent communities. Classified as an Archaebacteria and an extremophile, Thermoacidophiles are found in places where most organisms would not survive. Thermoacidophiles love heat and acidic watery environments, live in sulfur hot springs. As a result of living in such environments, however, these bacteria have enzymes that are stable at high temperatures, which could be useful for producing alternative fuels. (“DOE Joint Genome Institute”)

Some examples of thermoacidophiles are Thermoplasma Picrophilus Thermococci Paleococcus Pyrococcus Sulfolobus. Basically they will use iron or another metal to oxidize oxygen in a acidic environment, allowing the bacteria to produces energy. This process can be done at low temperature, but can also happen with more ease when the temperature is increased. Thermoacidophiles are chemoautotrophes using H2S the fist extrememophile was found about 30 yars ago. Thermoacidophiles may go hand in hand with chemical extremes Thermoacidophile are archeon that survive in places where other organism cannot. Thermoacidophile can usually be found in deep ocean thriving in acidous environments with high temperatures. The creatures are classified in the Domain Archea. Aquificales bacteria are often found in thermal streams and associated with sulfide precipitation. Sequencing some of these bacterial genomes — specifically, Thermocrinis ruber, S. rodmanii and S. kristjansonnii — could provide researchers with so-called “anchor genomes” that would be applied in turn to studies already being done on microbial communities in thermal environments such as the Mammoth Hot Springs in Yellowstone National Park.

The findings could also lead to a whole host of biotechnological applications. For example, the Aquificales bacteria have enzymes involved in the production of hydrogen that could be used in developing biofuels. Also, the bacteria thrive in environments with high levels of metals and thus could also offer new bioremediation pathways to remove them from contaminated sites. Additionally, the Aquificales bacteria could help reduce hydrogen sulfide emissions from geothermal power plants, a recurring problem in many such facilities.

“Why sequence thermoacidophiles of deep sea hydrothermal vents?.” DOE Joint Genome Institute. University of California , 18 sep 2009. Web. 24 Sep 2013.


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