Accumulation of NO2-cobalamin in nutrient-stressed ammonia-oxidizing archaea and in the oxygen deficient zone of the eastern tropical North Pacific

Katherine R. Heal, Wei Qin, Shady A. Amin, Allan H. Devol, James W. Moffett, E. Virginia Armbrust, David A. Stahl, Anitra E. Ingalls

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Cobalamin (vitamin B12) is a precious resource in natural systems that is produced by select prokaryotes and required by a broad range of organisms. In this way, the production of cobalamin reinforces numerous microbial interdependencies. Here we report the accumulation of an unusual form of cobalamin, nitrocobalamin (NO2-cobalamin), in a marine oxygen deficient zone (ODZ), isolates of ammonia-oxidizing archaea (AOA), and an anaerobic ammonium-oxidizing (anammox) bacteria enriched bioreactor. Low oxygen waters were enriched in NO2-cobalamin, and AOA isolates experiencing ammonia or copper stress produced more NO2-cobalamin, though there is wide strain-to-strain and batch-to-batch variability. NO2-cobalamin has no known biochemical role. We hypothesize that AOA and anammox bacteria are a source of marine NO2-cobalamin in the environment via a reactive nitrogen intermediate. These findings suggest connections between cobalamin forms and nitrogen transformations, physiological stress and ocean deoxygenation.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)453-457
Number of pages5
JournalEnvironmental Microbiology Reports
Volume10
Issue number4
DOIs
StatePublished - Aug 2018

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Ecology, Evolution, Behavior and Systematics
  • Agricultural and Biological Sciences (miscellaneous)

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