Volume 91 Issue 14 | p. 8 | News of The Week
Issue Date: April 8, 2013

Archaea Feed On Perchlorate

Microbiology: Chemistry discovery could be a clue to how life evolved on early Earth
Department: Science & Technology
News Channels: Biological SCENE, Environmental SCENE
Keywords: chlorate, perchlorate, archaea, bacteria

Microbes of the archaea group have been found to feed on perchlorate (Science, DOI: 10.1126/science.1233957). The findings demonstrate that biological breakdown of perchlorate (ClO4) into chloride is more widespread than previously realized. Similar microbes may have helped create oxidizing conditions for life on a young Earth before the rise of photosynthesis.

Most of the perchlorate in today’s environment comes from manufacturing . . .

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