Carbon Isotope Fractionation in Bacterial Production of Methane

Science  11 Dec 1959:
Vol. 130, Issue 3389, pp. 1658-1659
DOI: 10.1126/science.130.3389.1658-a


Anaerobic bacteria from a Pacific Ocean mud cause unusually large carbon isotope fractionations during fermentation of methanol. The methane produced is about 8 percent enriched in C12, relative to the original methanol. Fractionation factors determined at 30°C and 23°C were 1.081 and 1.094, respectively, which indicates that this process is dependent on temperature.