Denitrifier Diversity

Denitrification is carried out by a broad array of soil bacteria, including organ-otrophs, chemo- and photolithotrophs, N2 fixers, thermophiles, halophiles, and various pathogens. Over 50 genera with over 125 denitrifying species have been identified (Zumft, 1992). In soil, most culturable denitrifiers are facultative anaerobes from only 3-6 genera, principally Pseudomonas and Alcaligenes and to a lesser extent Bacillus, Agribacterium, and Flavibacterium. Typically denitrifiers constitute 0.1 to 5% of the total culturable soil population and up to 20% of total microbial biomass (Tiedje, 1988).

Organisms denitrify to generate energy (ATP) by electron transport phospho-rylation via the cytochrome system. The general pathway is t t t

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