Chemosynthesis Infographic

Varenya and Brinda - Mrs. Stokes Period 5

Venenivibrio Stagnispumantis

Background Information

The cells are motile. Venenivibrio stagnispumantis look like curved rods. They can tolerate really high concentrations of arsenic and antimony compunds.

Domain: Bacteria

Phylum: Aquificae

Class: Aquificae

Order: Aquificales

Family: Hydrogenothermaceae

Genus: Venenivibrio

Species: Venenivibrio stagnispumantis

How do they get energy? what are the chemical reactions?

Venenivibrio stagnispumantis gains metabolic energy using the "Knallgas" reaction, which is H2 + ½ O2 → H2O. They gain energy by oxidizing hydrogen gas.

Riftia Pachyptila

Background Information

Giant tube worms, Riftia pachyptila, are marine invertebrates in the phylum Annelida. They are related to tube worms. Riftia pachyptila lives over a mile deep in the Pacific Ocean, near hydrothermal vents. It can tolerate extremely high hydrogen sulfide levels. These worms can reach a length of 2.4 meters. They are commonly known as "giant tube worms". Shrimp and crabs feed off the worm's plume.

Kingdom: Animalia

Phylum: Annelida

Class: Polychaeta

Order: Canalipalpata

Family: Siboglinidae

Genus: Riftia

Species: Riftia pachyptila

How do they get energy?

Sunlight is not available directly as a form of energy. The worms depend on bacteria to oxidize hydrogen sulfide (while using dissolved oxygen in the water for respiration). This reaction provides the energy used for chemosynthesis. Tubeworms are unique, because they are able to use bacteria to indirectly obtain all materials they need for growth from molecules dissolved in water.

What are the chemical reactions?

The tube worm has a symbiotic relationship special bacteria. The organism's red plume that gets compounds from the environment. These compounds include hydrogen sulfide and carbon dioxide. The special bacteria perform chemosynthesis and release glucose, sulfur, and water. The tube worm uses the glucose and oxygen from the environment to produce carbon dioxide and water through cellular respiration. The water is released into the environment. After that, water is combined with sulfur and forms hydrogen sulfide that the chemosynthetical bacteria use. The bacteria use this is food and the cycle begins again.