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Journal Article

Anammox Biochemistry: a Tale of Heme c Proteins


Kartal,  Boran
Research Group for Microbial Physiology, Department of Biogeochemistry, Max Planck Institute for Marine Microbiology, Max Planck Society;

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Kartal, B., & Keltjens, J. T. (2016). Anammox Biochemistry: a Tale of Heme c Proteins. Trends in Biochemical Sciences, 41: 1, pp. 998-1011.

Cite as: http://hdl.handle.net/21.11116/0000-0001-C230-D
Anaerobic ammonium-oxidizing (anammox) bacteria are one of the latest scientific discoveries in the biogeochemical nitrogen cycle. These microorganisms are able to oxidize ammonium (NH4+) with nitrite (NO2−) as the oxidant instead of oxygen and form dinitrogen (N2) as the end product. Recent research has shed a light on the biochemistry underlying anammox metabolism with two key intermediates, nitric oxide (NO) and hydrazine (N2H4). Substrates and intermediates are converted exploiting the catalytic and electron-transfer potentials of c-type heme proteins known from numerous biochemical reactions and that have acquired new functionality in anammox biochemistry. On a global scale, anammox bacteria significantly contribute to the removal of fixed nitrogen from the environment and the process finds rapidly increasing interest in wastewater treatment.