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Isolation and Characterization of a Novel Magnetotactic Bacterium from Iran: Iron Uptake and Producing Magnetic Nanoparticles in Alphaproteobacterium MTB-KTN90


avatar Parisa Tajer Mohammad Ghazvini 1 , avatar Rouha Kasra Kermanshahi ORCID 1 , * , avatar Ahmad Nozad Golikand 2 , avatar Majid Sadeghizadeh 3

1 Department of Biology, Faculty of Science, Alzahra University, Tehran, IR Iran

2 Material Research School, Nuclear Science and Technology Research Institute (NSTRI), Tehran, IR Iran

3 Department of Genetics, Faculty of Biological Science, Tarbiat Modares University, Tehran, IR Iran

How to Cite: Tajer Mohammad Ghazvini P, Kasra Kermanshahi R, Nozad Golikand A, Sadeghizadeh M. Isolation and Characterization of a Novel Magnetotactic Bacterium from Iran: Iron Uptake and Producing Magnetic Nanoparticles in Alphaproteobacterium MTB-KTN90. Jundishapur J Microbiol.7(9):19343.
doi: 10.5812/jjm.19343.


Jundishapur Journal of Microbiology: 7 (9); 19343
Published Online: August 31, 2014
Article Type: Research Article
Received: April 10, 2014
Accepted: June 21, 2014



Magnetotactic bacteria (MTB) have the ability to biomineralize unique intracellular magnetic nanosize particles. These bacteria and their magnetosomes are under special attraction because of their great useful potential in nano-biotechnological and biomedical applications. MTB are ubiquitous in aquatic environments, but their isolation and axenic cultivation in pure culture is very difficult and only a limited number of them have been isolated in pure culture.


The main goal of this study was screening, isolation and cultivation of a new strain of these fastidious bacteria in pure culture from Iran to use them and their magnetosomes.

Materials and Methods:

Thirty samples were collected from various aquatic habitats. Most important physicochemical environmental factors that are involved in growth of MTB in the microcosms were investigated using inductively coupled plasma atomic emission spectroscopy (ICP-AES), portable dissolved oxygen meter, etc. Capillary racetrack technique and magnetic separation were used to purify and enrich MTB. Various isolation media were simultaneously used for isolation of a new magnetotactic bacterium in pure culture. Two imaging techniques were used to visualize the characterizations and cell division: transmission electron microscopy (TEM) and field-emission scanning electron microscopy (FESEM). Polymerase chain reaction (PCR), ChromasPro software and MEGA5 were applied for sequence analysis of the 16S rRNA gene.


The results revealed a correlation of important physicochemical factors such as pH and iron with growth and blooms of these bacteria in the microcosms. New strain MTB-KTN90 was isolated in a modified isolation medium at microaerophilic zone from Anzali lagoon, Iran and cultured in a modified growth medium subsequently. The phylogenetic analysis showed that the strain belongs to Alphaproteobacteria. Growth and iron uptake studies indicated an important role by this bacterium in the iron biogeochemical cycle. For the first time, this paper introduced a cultured magnetotactic Alphaproteobacterium, able to synthesize magnetosomes in the temperatures above 30C and reduce selenate oxyanion.


This paper may serve as a guide to screening, isolation, and cultivation of more new MTB. The new isolated strain opens up good opportunities for biotechnological applications such as medicine to bioremediation processes due to its unique abilities.

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