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(Science Daily)   Methane-munching acid-volcano microbe needs rare earth metal to survive. Okay, SyFy channel, you're not even trying anymore   ( ) divider line 12
    More: Interesting, methane, essential element, microbes, volcanoes, rare earth metals, Radboud University, environmental microbiology, bacteria  
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2922 clicks; posted to Geek » on 09 Sep 2013 at 1:11 PM (2 years ago)   |  Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»

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2013-09-09 12:01:07 PM  
The researchers mention the obvious application: using the bacteria to extract rare earths as part of a mining process. But it needs work.
2013-09-09 01:30:55 PM
2013-09-09 02:09:33 PM  
FTFA:   in an Italian hot, acid volcanic mudpot

Sounds like someone really doesn't like his mother-in-law.
2013-09-09 02:40:50 PM  
FTA:  Finally, metal-analyses of the purified methanol dehydrogenase provided the clue that lanthanides were the elements taking over the role of calcium.

Well, duh.
2013-09-09 02:47:06 PM  
High Clan Kolnar approves.
2013-09-09 02:56:39 PM

Why does the parasite look like a giant spear of messed-up asparagus?
2013-09-09 02:59:16 PM  
Funny thing about "rare earths", they really arn't rare.
2013-09-09 03:05:53 PM  
FTFA: "Rare earth metals like cerium are used in small but significant amounts in electronic products like cell phones and TV screens."

A major technological application for cerium(III) oxide is a catalytic converter for the oxidation of CO emissions in the exhaust gases from motor vehicles. In particular, cerium oxide is added into diesel fuels. Another important use of the cerium oxide is a hydrocarbon catalyst in self cleaning ovens, incorporated into oven walls and as a petroleum cracking catalyst in petroleum refining. ...

Jeeze. Some rare earths are used in electronics but not cerium.
2013-09-09 03:08:13 PM

I need tungsten to live
2013-09-09 09:00:38 PM  
Interesting but not terribly surprising. Cerium ammonium nitrate (CAN) is often used in the lab for single electron oxidation, so it looks like nature beat us to it, we just didn't know it.
2013-09-10 12:23:52 AM  
Methanol dehydrogenases from other bacteria contain calcium, but crystallographic analysis demonstrated that this element is too small to fit into the available space in the enzyme.

Crystallographers still under the impression that proteins are in the solid state in vivo? Shocking!

In other news, follow-up article showing calcium works just as well, and was actually the responsible party in the first place (just like the other fark article earlier this year) in 3....2...
2013-09-10 03:01:42 PM  
Not sure they played metal.

/hot link
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