6.  What bacteria is responsible for converting ammonia to nitrite?

The bacteria responsible for converting ammonia to nitrite in freshwater are from the genus Nitrosomonas, in saltwater Nitrosococcus are responsible. These bacteria are rod-shaped chemolithoautothrophs with an aerobic metabolism. While they do not grow by photosynthesis, their unusual metabolic behavior involves burning ammonia with oxygen. Long, thin membranes inside the bacteria's cell use electrons from ammonia's nitrogen atom to produce energy. In order to complete cell division, they must consume vast amounts of ammonia, making the division process last for several days. The cells grow either in pairs or short chains. In nitrification the ammonia oxidizing bacteria in Turbostart play the role of oxidizing ammonia to nitrite, which is then converted to nitrate by other bacteria.

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California State, Texas A&M Corpus Christi, University of Nevada Las Vegas

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