Küsel, K; Drake, HL: Acetogens. In: Reitner, J., Thiel, V. (eds.), Encyclopedia of Geobiology, Springer Verlag, New York, DOI 10.1007/978-1-4020-9212-1, pp. 1-5 (2011)
Acetogens utilize the acetyl-CoA ‘Wood-Ljungdahl’ pathway as a terminal electron-accepting, energy-conserving, CO2-fixing process. The reductive synthesis of acetate from CO2 differentiates acetogens from organisms that synthesize acetate by other metabolic processes. Although the production of acetate as sole reduced end product is the classic hallmark of acetogens, the production of acetate is not a part of the definition, because the acetogen might not form acetate in situ or when cultured in the laboratory. This mini-review outlines the physiological properties, phylogenic diversity, and functional diversity of acetogens.
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