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Nature_and_Environment.123

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Bacteria - the essential form of life

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{Nature_and_Environment.123.21}: Jay Hoffman {resist} Tue, 18 Aug 2020 00:41:18 CDT (25 lines)

The ocean floor and the ground beneath our feet are riddled with tiny
nanowires—1/100,000th the width of a human hair—created by billions of
bacteria that can generate electric currents from organic waste.

In environments without oxygen, the bacterium Geobacter "breathe" by
projecting tiny protein filaments called nanowires into bacterial
communities known as biofilms to dispose of excess electrons resulting
from the conversion of organic waste to electricity. But it has
remained a mystery how these bacteria, which stack themselves on top
of each other like apartment high-rises, send electrons over distances
100-times their size.

In previous research, the team showed that nanowires comprised of a
protein called OmcS contained tiny metallic building blocks, or hemes,
throughout their length. OmcS transmits electricity. The new study
found that when stimulated by an electric field, the bacteria produce
previously unknown nanowires of a different, more efficient protein,
OmcZ. It transmits electricity 1,000 times more efficiently than OmcS.

"https://phys.org/news/2020-08-bacteria-nature-electrical-grid.html"

Electricity-conducting bacteria yield secret to tiny batteries, big
medical advances
"https://phys.org/news/2019-04-electricity-conducting-bacteria-yield-
secret-tiny.html"

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