Staff Publications

Staff Publications

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    'Staff publications' is the digital repository of Wageningen University & Research

    'Staff publications' contains references to publications authored by Wageningen University staff from 1976 onward.

    Publications authored by the staff of the Research Institutes are available from 1995 onwards.

    Full text documents are added when available. The database is updated daily and currently holds about 240,000 items, of which 72,000 in open access.

    We have a manual that explains all the features 

Record number 410496
Title Predicting microbial nitrogen pathways from basic principles
Author(s) Leemput, I.A. van de; Veraart, A.J.; Dakos, V.; Klein, J.J.M. de; Strous, M.; Scheffer, M.
Source Environmental Microbiology 13 (2011)6. - ISSN 1462-2912 - p. 1477 - 1487.
DOI http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/j.1462-2920.2011.02450.x
Department(s) Aquatic Ecology and Water Quality Management
WIMEK
Publication type Refereed Article in a scientific journal
Publication year 2011
Keyword(s) anaerobic ammonium oxidation - dissimilatory nitrate reduction - fresh-water sediment - estuarine sediment - growth yields - waste-water - denitrification - bacteria - nitrification - anammox
Abstract Nitrogen compounds are transformed by a complicated network of competing geochemical processes or microbial pathways, each performed by a different ecological guild of microorganisms. Complete experimental unravelling of this network requires a prohibitive experimental effort. Here we present a simple model that predicts relative rates of hypothetical nitrogen pathways, based only on the stoichiometry and energy yield of the performed redox reaction, assuming competition for resources between alternative pathways. Simulating competing pathways in hypothetical freshwater and marine sediment situations, we surprisingly found that much of the variation observed in nature can simply be predicted from these basic principles. Investigating discrepancies between observations and predictions led to two important biochemical factors that may create barriers for the viability of pathways: enzymatic costs for long pathways and high ammonium activation energy. We hypothesize that some discrepancies can be explained by non-equilibrium dynamics. The model predicted a pathway that has not been discovered in nature yet: the dismutation of nitrite to the level of nitrate and dinitrogen gas
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