How to Advertise
Home | This Week's Contents  |  C&EN ClassifiedsSearch C&EN Online

Millennium Special Report
C&EN 75th Anniversary Issue
Related Person
Alison Butler
E-mail this article to a friend
Print this article
E-mail the editor
 Table of Contents
 C&EN Classifieds
 News of the Week
 Cover Story
 Editor's Page
 Government & Policy
  Government & Policy
 ACS News
 Digital Briefs
 ACS Comments
 Career & Employment
 Special Reports
 What's That Stuff?
 Pharmaceutical Century

 Hot Articles
 Safety  Letters

 Back Issues

 How to Subscribe
 Subscription Changes
 About C&EN
 Copyright Permission
 E-mail webmaster
October 1, 2001
Volume 79, Number 40
CENEAR 79 40 p. 17
ISSN 0009-2347
[Previous Story] [Next Story]

Sunlight Affects Iron Cycles In The Ocean


Add photochemistry to the growing list of factors known to play a role in the complicated biogeochemical cycling of iron in the oceans. When exposed to sunlight, complexes of iron(III) with siderophores containing -hydroxy acids undergo photochemical changes, causing iron uptake by marine microorganisms to occur more readily, according to California researchers [Nature, 413, 409 (2001)].

Siderophores--Greek for "iron loving"--are organic ligands produced by aerobic microorganisms to help them capture iron. UC Santa Barbara chemistry professor Alison Butler and coworkers find that exposing the aquachelin family of Fe(III) siderophores from oceanic bacteria to light causes the hydrophobic tails of the siderophores to split off from the hydrophilic peptide heads. At the same time, the Fe(III) is reduced to Fe(II). In ocean water, iron in the photoproducts is taken up more readily than the iron in the original complex. Such cycling, the researchers write, "is likely to be a fundamental feature of the marine biogeochemistry of iron, strongly influencing the interaction of marine biota with this critical micronutrient."

[Previous Story] [Next Story]


Chemical & Engineering News
Copyright © 2001 American Chemical Society

How to Advertise
Home | Table of Contents | News of the Week | Cover Story
Business | Government & Policy | Science/Technology
Chemical & Engineering News
Copyright © 2001 American Chemical Society - All Right Reserved
1155 16th Street NW • Washington DC 20036 • (202) 872-4600 • (800) 227-5558

CASChemPortChemCenterPubs Page