Ammonium oxidation coupled to dissimilatory reduction of iron under anaerobic conditions in wetland soils

Jean Christophe Clément, Junu Shrestha, Joan G. Ehrenfeld, Peter R. Jaffé

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

184 Scopus citations

Abstract

In exploring the dynamics of iron and nitrogen cycling in sediments from riparian forests we have observed a redox reaction that has not been previously described. During incubations of soil slurries under strictly anaerobic conditions, we repeatedly measured an unexpected production of both nitrite (NO2-) and ferrous iron [Fe(II)]. Using this indirect evidence we hypothesize that, under anaerobic conditions, there is a biological process that uses ferric iron [Fe(III)] as an electron acceptor while oxidizing ammonium (NH4+) to NO2- for energy production. This NH4+ oxidation under iron reducing anaerobic conditions is thermodynamically feasible and is potentially a critical component of the N cycle in saturated sediments.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)2323-2328
Number of pages6
JournalSoil Biology and Biochemistry
Volume37
Issue number12
DOIs
StatePublished - Dec 1 2005

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Microbiology
  • Soil Science

Keywords

  • Ammonium
  • Anaerobic nitrification
  • Iron reduction
  • Nitrite
  • Redox potential
  • Wetland sediments

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