The role of heterotrophic bacteria in feldspar dissolution: an experimental approach

Hutchens, E., Valsami-Jones, E., McEldowney, S., Gaze, W. and McLean, J. 2003. The role of heterotrophic bacteria in feldspar dissolution: an experimental approach. Mineralogical Magazine. 67 (6), pp. 1157-1170.

TitleThe role of heterotrophic bacteria in feldspar dissolution: an experimental approach
AuthorsHutchens, E., Valsami-Jones, E., McEldowney, S., Gaze, W. and McLean, J.
Abstract

This paper presents the results of a laboratory study on the influence of heterotrophic bacteria on dissolution of a silicate mineral (K-feldspar) under a variety of growth conditions. Twenty seven strains of heterotrophic bacteria were isolated from a feldspar-rich soil (Shap, NW England). Liquid and solid minimal aerobic media (C/N-sufficient, K-limited, Fe-limited, N-limited and glucose/NH4Cl only) at 26ºC were used for isolation of the bacteria. The media selected bacterial isolates that were fastgrowing aerobic heterotrophs able to use glucose as the sole source of carbon and energy. The extent of mineral dissolution (in the presence of the isolates) was assessed after 48 h of incubation by measuring the release of Al from the K-feldspar by ICP-AES. More detailed dissolution experiments were carried out with one of the strains, Serratia marcescens, an isolate that was very effective in enhancing feldspar dissolution. The main conclusions of this study are: (1) the degree of enhancement of K-feldspar dissolution varied with bacterial isolate and growth conditions; (2) enhancement of dissolution began during stationary phase growth; (3) the production of chelating compounds (exopolymers, siderophores, pigments) during the stationary phase might be a possible mechanism for bacterially enhanced K-feldspar dissolution; (4) the frequent sub-culturing of isolates can have a significant effect on their physiological characteristics and may possibly influence their capacity to enhance mineral dissolution.

KeywordsK-feldspar, dissolution, heterotrophic bacteria, serratia marcescens
JournalMineralogical Magazine
Journal citation67 (6), pp. 1157-1170
ISSN0026-461X
Year01 Dec 2003
Digital Object Identifier (DOI)doi:10.1180/0026461036760155
Publication dates
Published01 Dec 2003

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