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John Leigh, Ph.D.
Methanococcus maripaludis (Latin "mare" meaning sea, "palus" meaning marsh) is a model species among the methanogenic Archaea. Originally characterized by W. J. Jones, the species was the predominent methanogen isolated from a salt-marsh sediment in South Carolina, United States. Numerous additional isolates were obtained by W. Whitman, including strain S2, also known as strain LL. M. maripaludis is strictly anaerobic, hydrogenotrophic (growing on hydrogen and carbon dioxide) and nitrogen-fixing, and is a mesophilic relative of the hyperthermophilic Methanococcus jannaschii. Cells are irregular cocci with weak motility. M. maripaludis is an excellent laboratory model because of rapid, reliable growth, a complete genome sequence, a robust set of genetic tools, and ongoing studies with expression arrays and proteomics.
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