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The potential rates and control of aerobic root-associated carbon monoxide (CO) consumption were assessed by using excised plant roots from five common freshwater macrophytes. Kinetic analyses indicated that the maximum potential uptake velocities for CO consumption ranged from 0.4 to 2.7 μmol of CO g (dry weight)-1 h-1 for the five species. The observed rates were comparable to previously reported rates of root-associated methane uptake. The apparent half-saturation constants for CO consumption ranged from 50 to 370 nM CO; these values are considerably lower than the values obtained for methane uptake. The CO consumption rates reached maximum values at temperatures between 27 and 32°C, and there was a transition to CO production at ≥44°C, most likely as a result of thermochemical organic matter decomposition. Incubation of roots with organic substrates (e.g., 5 mM syringic acid, glucose, alanine, and acetate) dramatically reduced the rate of CO consumption, perhaps reflecting a shift in metabolism by facultative CO oxidizers. Based on responses to a suite of antibiotics, most of the CO consumption (about 90%) was due to eubacteria rather than fungi or other eucaryotes. Based on the results of acetylene inhibition experiments, methanotrophs and ammonia oxidizers were not active CO consumers.

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Applied and Environmental Microbiology

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