Journal of Marine Science: Research & Development
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The Atlantis II Deep is the most studied and largest brine pool in the Red Sea. It is an active hydrothermal habitat with
unique physical conditions. Its unique characteristics (70?C temperature, 26% salinity, pH 5.2) caused it to be a very
attractive marine ecosystem for microbiological and metagenomics studies. Sediments of Atlantis II Deep have the highest
metal content compared to any known brines? sediments. In this study, we report the first successful enrichment for anaerobic,
polyextremophilic bacteria from the Atlantis II Deep sediments using a variety of cultivation approaches combined with
-like species was chemolithoautotrophically enriched by coupling the oxidation of
lactate to the reduction of arsenate under anaerobic conditions. The bacterium demonstrated slow growth under conditions
of extreme hypersalinity and high temperature (60?C). The growth of a heterotroph was also demonstrated in two anoxic
enrichment cultures amended with sulfide and sulfate independently. The enriched heterotroph was found to belong to
group, whose members are well-known for their sulfur-oxidation capability. The growth
occurred at high temperature (60?C) and high pressure (41 MPa). Marine isolates from this group have the ability to degrade
organic matter and biopolymers such as cellulose and chitin. Subsequently, they can have many biotechnological and industrial
applications. In conclusion, our preliminary cultivation-based analysis presents potential polyextremophilic bacteria that are
able to thrive under several abiotic stresses. These bacteria might contribute to the anaerobic degradation of organic substrates,
in addition to reducing the arsenate enriched at the seafloor sediments.
Nelly Abdelghany Abu Alkheir obtained her BSc in Biotechnology from the Faculty of Biotechnology, Misr University for Science & Technology, Egypt in 2009 with
excellent grade. She won a full scholarship to study as exchange student for spring 2008 at University of Eastern Finland. She received training in the field of
molecular biology in the A. I. Virtanen Institute for molecular sciences. In 2010, she received a research assistant fellowship (that covers the master study tuition)
by the biology department, American University in Cairo. She received a fellowship to conduct her thesis research work in University of California, San Diego.
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