Skip to main content
U.S. flag

An official website of the United States government

Microbial antimony biogeochemistry: Enzymes, regulation, and related metabolic pathways

June 24, 2016

Antimony (Sb) is a toxic metalloid that occurs widely at trace concentrations in soil, aquatic systems, and the atmosphere. Nowadays, with the development of its new industrial applications and the corresponding expansion of antimony mining activities, the phenomenon of antimony pollution has become an increasingly serious concern. In recent years, research interest in Sb has been growing and reflects a fundamental scientific concern regarding Sb in the environment. In this review, we summarize the recent research on bacterial antimony transformations, especially those regarding antimony uptake, efflux, antimonite oxidation, and antimonate reduction. We conclude that our current understanding of antimony biochemistry and biogeochemistry is roughly equivalent to where that of arsenic was some 20 years ago. This portends the possibility of future discoveries with regard to the ability of microorganisms to conserve energy for their growth from antimony redox reactions and the isolation of new species of “antimonotrophs.”

Citation Information

Publication Year 2016
Title Microbial antimony biogeochemistry: Enzymes, regulation, and related metabolic pathways
DOI 10.1128/AEM.01375-16
Authors Jingxin Li, Qian Wang, Ronald S. Oremland, Thomas R. Kulp, Christopher Rensing, Gejiao Wang
Publication Type Article
Publication Subtype Journal Article
Series Title Applied and Environmental Microbiology
Index ID 70176233
Record Source USGS Publications Warehouse
USGS Organization National Research Program - Western Branch

Related Content