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Nils-Kåre Birkeland

Bio: Nils-Kåre Birkeland is an academic researcher from University of Bergen. The author has contributed to research in topics: Isocitrate dehydrogenase & Archaeoglobus fulgidus. The author has an hindex of 32, co-authored 117 publications receiving 3977 citations. Previous affiliations of Nils-Kåre Birkeland include University of Maryland Biotechnology Institute & Norwegian Defence Research Establishment.


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TL;DR: The isolation of thermoacidophilic methanotrophs that represented a distinct lineage within the bacterial phylum Verrucomicrobia are described, and a new genus Methylacidiphilum is proposed to encompass all three newly discovered bacteria.
Abstract: Aerobic methanotrophic bacteria are capable of utilizing methane as their sole energy source. They are commonly found at the oxic/anoxic interfaces of environments such as wetlands, aquatic sediments, and landfills, where they feed on methane produced in anoxic zones of these environments. Until recently, all known species of aerobic methanotrophs belonged to the phylum Proteobacteria, in the classes Gammaproteobacteria and Alphaproteobacteria. However, in 2007-2008 three research groups independently described the isolation of thermoacidophilic methanotrophs that represented a distinct lineage within the bacterial phylum Verrucomicrobia. Isolates were obtained from geothermal areas in Italy, New Zealand and Russia. They are by far the most acidophilic methanotrophs known, with a lower growth limit below pH 1. Here we summarize the properties of these novel methanotrophic Verrucomicrobia, compare them with the proteobacterial methanotrophs, propose a unified taxonomic framework for them and speculate on their potential environmental significance. New genomic and physiological data are combined with existing information to allow detailed comparison of the three strains. We propose the new genus Methylacidiphilum to encompass all three newly discovered bacteria.

438 citations

Journal ArticleDOI
TL;DR: Evidence is gained for greater metabolic flexibility than was previously known, and for genetic components that may have biotechnological potential, in M. capsulatus, including an ability to grow on sugars, oxidize chemolithotrophic hydrogen and sulfur, and live under reduced oxygen tension, all of which have implications for methanotroph ecology.
Abstract: Methanotrophs are ubiquitous bacteria that can use the greenhouse gas methane as a sole carbon and energy source for growth, thus playing major roles in global carbon cycles, and in particular, substantially reducing emissions of biologically generated methane to the atmosphere. Despite their importance, and in contrast to organisms that play roles in other major parts of the carbon cycle such as photosynthesis, no genome-level studies have been published on the biology of methanotrophs. We report the first complete genome sequence to our knowledge from an obligate methanotroph, Methylococcus capsulatus (Bath), obtained by the shotgun sequencing approach. Analysis revealed a 3.3-Mb genome highly specialized for a methanotrophic lifestyle, including redundant pathways predicted to be involved in methanotrophy and duplicated genes for essential enzymes such as the methane monooxygenases. We used phylogenomic analysis, gene order information, and comparative analysis with the partially sequenced methylotroph Methylobacterium extorquens to detect genes of unknown function likely to be involved in methanotrophy and methylotrophy. Genome analysis suggests the ability of M. capsulatus to scavenge copper (including a previously unreported nonribosomal peptide synthetase) and to use copper in regulation of methanotrophy, but the exact regulatory mechanisms remain unclear. One of the most surprising outcomes of the project is evidence suggesting the existence of previously unsuspected metabolic flexibility in M. capsulatus, including an ability to grow on sugars, oxidize chemolithotrophic hydrogen and sulfur, and live under reduced oxygen tension, all of which have implications for methanotroph ecology. The availability of the complete genome of M. capsulatus (Bath) deepens our understanding of methanotroph biology and its relationship to global carbon cycles. We have gained evidence for greater metabolic flexibility than was previously known, and for genetic components that may have biotechnological potential.

359 citations

Journal ArticleDOI
TL;DR: The isolate, designated Kam1, was recovered from an acidic hot spring in Kamchatka, Russia, and is more thermoacidophilic than any other known methanotroph, with optimal growth at ≈55°C and pH 3.5.
Abstract: Methanotrophic bacteria constitute a ubiquitous group of microorganisms playing an important role in the biogeochemical carbon cycle and in control of global warming through natural reduction of methane emission. These bacteria share the unique ability of using methane as a sole carbon and energy source and have been found in a great variety of habitats. Phylogenetically, known methanotrophs constitute a rather limited group and have so far only been affiliated with the Proteobacteria. Here, we report the isolation and initial characterization of a nonproteobacterial obligately methanotrophic bacterium. The isolate, designated Kam1, was recovered from an acidic hot spring in Kamchatka, Russia, and is more thermoacidophilic than any other known methanotroph, with optimal growth at ≈55°C and pH 3.5. Kam1 is only distantly related to all previously known methanotrophs and belongs to the Verrucomicrobia lineage of evolution. Genes for methane monooxygenases, essential for initiation of methane oxidation, could not be detected by using standard primers in PCR amplification and Southern blot analysis, suggesting the presence of a different methane oxidation enzyme. Kam1 also lacks the well developed intracellular membrane systems typical for other methanotrophs. The isolate represents a previously unrecognized biological methane sink, and, due to its unusual phylogenetic affiliation, it will shed important light on the origin, evolution, and diversity of biological methane oxidation and on the adaptation of this process to extreme habitats. Furthermore, Kam1 will add to our knowledge of the metabolic traits and biogeochemical roles of the widespread but poorly understood Verrucomicrobia phylum.

305 citations

Journal ArticleDOI
TL;DR: In this article, the authors investigated the effects of C/N (carbon/nitrogen) ratio, C/P(carbon/phosphate) ratio and iron concentration in POME on fermentative hydrogen production.

193 citations

Journal ArticleDOI
TL;DR: The results showed that the load-shock treatment method was the best for enriching thermophilic hydrogen-producing seeds from mixed anaerobic cultures as it completely repressed methanogenic activity and gave the a maximum hydrogen production yield.

189 citations


Cited by
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3,734 citations

Journal ArticleDOI
TL;DR: This review deals with UV-induced DNA damage and the associated repair mechanisms as well as methods of detectingDNA damage and its future perspectives.
Abstract: Increases in ultraviolet radiation at the Earth's surface due to the depletion of the stratospheric ozone layer have recently fuelled interest in the mechanisms of various effects it might have on organisms. DNA is certainly one of the key targets for UV-induced damage in a variety of organisms ranging from bacteria to humans. UV radiation induces two of the most abundant mutagenic and cytotoxic DNA lesions such as cyclobutane–pyrimidine dimers (CPDs) and 6–4 photoproducts (6–4PPs) and their Dewar valence isomers. However, cells have developed a number of repair or tolerance mechanisms to counteract the DNA damage caused by UV or any other stressors. Photoreactivation with the help of the enzyme photolyase is one of the most important and frequently occurring repair mechanisms in a variety of organisms. Excision repair, which can be distinguished into base excision repair (BER) and nucleotide excision repair (NER), also plays an important role in DNA repair in several organisms with the help of a number of glycosylases and polymerases, respectively. In addition, mechanisms such as mutagenic repair or dimer bypass, recombinational repair, cell-cycle checkpoints, apoptosis and certain alternative repair pathways are also operative in various organisms. This review deals with UV-induced DNA damage and the associated repair mechanisms as well as methods of detecting DNA damage and its future perspectives.

1,655 citations

Journal ArticleDOI
TL;DR: Current Protocols in Molecular Biology Title NLM.

1,258 citations

Book ChapterDOI
TL;DR: The first synthetic dye compound was aniline purple as mentioned in this paper, which was synthesized in 1856 and was the first compound to be synthesized from natural colorants, and it was used extensively in textile, leather tanning, paper production, food technology, agriculture, light harvesting array, coloring and pharmaceuticals.

1,044 citations

01 Jan 2004
TL;DR: In this paper, the effects of subinhibitory concentrations of antibiotics and disinfectants on environmental bacteria, especially with respect to resistance, are investigated and the impact on the frequency of resistance transfer by antibacterials present in the environment is questionable.
Abstract: Antibiotics, disinfectants and bacteria resistant to them have been detected in environmental compartments such as waste water, surface water, ground water, sediments and soils. Antibiotics are released into the environment after their use in medicine, veterinary medicine and their employment as growth promoters in animal husbandry, fish farming and other fields. There is increasing concern about the growing resistance of pathogenic bacteria in the environment, and their ecotoxic effects. Increasingly, antibiotic resistance is seen as an ecological problem. This includes both the ecology of resistance genes and that of the resistant bacteria themselves. Little is known about the effects of subinhibitory concentrations of antibiotics and disinfectants on environmental bacteria, especially with respect to resistance. According to the present state of our knowledge, the impact on the frequency of resistance transfer by antibacterials present in the environment is questionable. The input of resistant bacteria into the environment seems to be an important source of resistance in the environment. The possible impact of resistant bacteria on the environment is not yet known. Further research into these issues is warranted.

867 citations