New paper in Nature: Comparative kinetic characterization of comammox


After more than four years of cultivation work, we obtained the first pure culture of a complete nitrifier (comammox) and show that it has a higher substrate affinity than many ammonia oxidizing archaea. On the other hand, this comammox microbe has an unexpectedly low affinity for nitrite, despite being a member of the genus Nitrospira that contains many high-affinity nitrite-oxidizers. Furthermore, we demonstrate that this comammox bacterium has the highest biomass yield per mol substrate oxidized among all nitrifiers.