Sunday, April 29, 2007

Hyperthermophilic Geobacillus species from Yellowstone hot springs: Isolation and potential biotechnological applications

Phillip J. Brumm, Melodee Patterson, and David A. Mead. C5-6 Technologies, 2120 W Greenview Drive, Middleton, WI 53562

Traditionally, Bacillus species such as Geobacillus stearothermophilus, have been reported as having maximum growth temperatures of 70C.  We have isolated a large number of Geobacillus species from hot springs at Yellowstone National Park from environments where these organisms grow near or at the boiling point of water. Four of these Geobacillus species are currently undergoing whole genome sequencing at the Joint Genome Institute.  The organisms possess a number of interesting features including the production of thermostable protein biofilms in the laboratory as well as production of novel thermostable enzymes.  Potential applications of these two features will be discussed as well as conclusions drawn from the genome sequencing results.