Hexavalent chromium [Cr(VI)] is a soluble carcinogen that has caused widespread contamination of soil and water in many industrial nations. Bacteria have the potential to aid remediation as certain strains can catalyze the reduction of Cr(VI) to insoluble and less toxic Cr(III).Here, we examine Cr(VI) reducingMicrobacterium spp. (Cr-K1W, Cr-K20, Cr-K29, and Cr-K32) isolated from contaminated sediment (Seymore, Indiana) and show varying chromate responses despite the isolates' phylogenetic similarity (i.e., identical 16S rRNA gene sequences). Detailed analysis identified differences based on genomic metabolic potential, growth and general metabolic capabilities, and capacity to resist and reduce Cr(VI). Taken together, the discrepancies between the isolates demonstrate the complexity inter-strain variation can have on microbial physiology and related biogeochemical processes.
- Chromium reduction
- Strain-level variation