Characterization of enzymatic reduction of hexavalent chromium by Escherichia coli ATCC 33456

H. Shen, Y. T. Wang

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252 Scopus citations


Chromium reduction by Escherichia coli ATCC 33456 quantitatively transferred hexavalent chromium, Cr(VI), to trivalent chromium, Cr(III). The reduced chromium was predominantly present in the external medium. Supernatant fluids of cell extract, obtained by centrifugation at 12,000 and 150,000 x g, showed almost the same Cr(VI) reduction activity, indicating that Cr(VI) reduction by E. coli ATCC 33456 was a largely soluble reductase activity. In studies with respiratory inhibitors, no inhibitory effects on aerobic and anaerobic Cr(VI) reduction were demonstrated by addition of cyanide, azide, and rotenone into both intact cell cultures and supernatant fluids of E. coli ATCC 33456. Although cytochromes b and d were identified in the membrane fraction of cell extracts, Cr(VI) was not reduced by the membrane fraction alone. The cytochrome difference spectra analysis also indicated that these cytochromes of the respiratory chain require the presence of the soluble Cr(VI) reductase to mediate electron transport to Cr(VI). Stimulation of Cr(VI) reduction by an uncoupler, 2,4-dinitrophenol, indicated that the respiratory-chain-linked electron transport to Cr(VI) was limited by the rate of dissipation of the proton motive force.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)3771-3777
Number of pages7
JournalApplied and Environmental Microbiology
Issue number11
StatePublished - 1993

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biotechnology
  • Food Science
  • Applied Microbiology and Biotechnology
  • Ecology


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