Query: NC_012560:1564500 Azotobacter vinelandii DJ, complete genome Lineage: Azotobacter vinelandii; Azotobacter; Pseudomonadaceae; Pseudomonadales; Proteobacteria; Bacteria General Information: This organism was first isolated from the soil in Vineland, New Jersey, although it is found worldwide. It is a large obligate aerobe that has one of the highest respiratory rates of any organism. Azotobacter vinelandii also produces a number of unusual nitrogenases which allow it to fix atmospheric nitrogen to ammonia, a compound it can then use as a nitrogen source. It protects the oxygen-sensitive nitrogenase enzymes through its high respiratory rate, which sequesters the nitrogenase complexes in an anoxic environment. This organism has a number of unusual characteristics. Under extreme environmental conditions, the cell will produce a cyst that is resistant to dessication and is surrounded by two capsular polysaccharide layers. This organism produces two industrially important polysaccharides, poly-beta-hydroxybutyrate (PHB) and alginate. PHB is a thermoplastic biopolymer, and alginate is used in the food industry. Alginate is also used by the pathogen Pseudomonas aeruginosa to infect the lungs of cystic fibrosis patients.
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General Information: This strain was isolated from a polluted creek in Urbana, Illinois, USA by enrichment culture with ethylbenzyne as a sole source of carbon and energy. Its ability to degrade several different compounds including benzene, toluene, and ethylbenzene makes this species useful in the bioremediation of sites contaminated with multiple aromatic hydrocarbons. Underground gasoline tanks which have developed leaks can contaminate soil and water with a variety of these compounds. Bacteria belonging to the Pseudomonas group are common inhabitants of soil and water and can also be found on the surfaces of plants and animals. Pseudomonas bacteria are found in nature in a biofilm or in planktonic form. Pseudomonas bacteria are renowned for their metabolic versatility as they can grow under a variety of growth conditions and do not need any organic growth factors. As they are metabolically versatile, and well characterized, it makes them great candidates for biocatalysis, bioremediation and other agricultural applications. Certain strains have been used in the production of bioplastics.