Caption: Methylomonas methanica is a Gram-negative, methylotrophic bacterium found in soil or water. Methylotrophic bacteria (methylotrophs) are bacteria capable of growth on single carbon compounds (such as methane, methanol, methylamine, etc.) These compounds act as the sources of carbon and energy to sustain growth. Methylomonas methanica is also a methanotrophic bacterium (methanotroph) since it uses primarily methane as a source of carbon and energy. It primarily lives under aerobic and microaerobic conditions. Under aerobic conditions, it combines oxygen and methane to form formaldehyde, which is then incorporated into organic compounds. Methanotrophs also have a system of internal membranes within which methane oxidation occurs. Methanotrophs and methylotrophs can occur in extreme environments and are especially common where methane is produced. Their habitats range from oceans, mud, marshes, underground environments, soils, rice paddies, etc. They are of special interest to researchers studying global warming.
Magnification*: x2,600
Type: SEM
Copyright 2007 Dennis Kunkel Microscopy, Inc.
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