Bacteria breaking free from home

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When bacteria grow in the environment for example on water systems or pipelines, their metabolic activity can lead to degradation of the metal and to corrosion of the material. This can seriously effect functioning of the pipes which can then also result in serious health issues.

One bacterium that likes to grow on metallic surfaces in the soil is the bacterium Desulfovibrio vulgaris. This interesting bacterium can live with sulphur rather than oxygen and has not been fully characterised yet.

The problem with bacteria like Desulfovibrio vulgaris is that they like to form biofilms on metallic surfaces in the warm and wet soil. If you do not remember what a biofilm is, you might want to refresh your memory with this post where I explain in more detail what biofilms are.

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Bacteria breaking free from home

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Sarah Wettstadt

Science Writer, MicroComms