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Interdependence between bacterial EPS and early grain coat development

Charlaftis, Dimitrios; Jones, Stuart J.; Grimm, Lars; Kappler, Andreas

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Lars Grimm

Andreas Kappler


Bacteria are the most abundant forms of life we know on our planet, able to survive in a variety of habitats, that play an important role in mineral formation and transformation processes. Here, we present laboratory experiments in which unconsolidated quartz grains were seeded with Geobacter sulfurreducens cells and exposed to a mineral medium solution for 96 hours at temperatures of between 60°C and 120°C. Experimental data show the interdependence between extracellular polymeric substances (EPS) and the early formation of grain-coating material. The occurrence of EPS promotes the development of web and bridging structures binding the quartz grains and creating EPS-coated surfaces. With increasing temperature, an amorphous mineral phase grows preferentially on these surfaces suggesting that EPS can act as a template for mineral nucleation. At temperatures >100°C, the order of crystallinity of the amorphous authigenic phase increases, transitioning to poorly-ordered rosette-like textures.

Journal Article Type Article
Acceptance Date Mar 8, 2023
Online Publication Date Mar 25, 2023
Publication Date 2023-08
Deposit Date Apr 12, 2023
Publicly Available Date Apr 20, 2023
Journal Terra Nova
Print ISSN 0954-4879
Electronic ISSN 1365-3121
Publisher Wiley
Peer Reviewed Peer Reviewed
Volume 35
Issue 4
Pages 241-249
Public URL


Published Journal Article (8.7 Mb)

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Copyright Statement
© 2023 The Authors. Terra Nova published by John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

This is an open access article under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits use, distribution and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

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