Various cultures (previously described), which oxidize thiosulfate in mineral media have been studied in an attempt to determine the products of oxidation. The transformation of sodium thiosulfate by Cultures B, T, and K yields sodium tetrathionate and sodium hydroxide; secondary chemical reactions result in the accumulation of some tri- and pentathionates, sulfate, and elemental sulfur. As a result of the initial reaction, the pH increases; the secondary reactions cause a drop in pH after this initial rise. The primary reaction yields much less energy than the reactions effected by autotrophic bacteria. No significant amounts of assimilated organic carbon were detected in media supporting representatives of these cultures. It is concluded that they are heterotrophic bacteria.

Th. novellus oxidizes sodium thiosulfate to sodium sulfate and sulfuric acid; the pH drops progressively with growth and oxidation. Carbon assimilation typical of autotrophic bacteria was detected; the ratio of sulfate-sulfur formed to carbon assimilated was 56:1. It is calculated that 5.1 per cent of the energy yielded by the oxidation of thiosulfate is accounted for in the organic cell substance synthesized from inorganic materials. This organism is a facultative autotroph.

The products of oxidation of sodium thiosulfate by Th. thioparus are sodium sulfate, sulfuric acid, and elemental sulfur; the ratio of sulfate sulfur to elemental sulfur is 3 to 2. The pH decreases during growth and oxidation. The elemental sulfur is produced by the primary reaction and is not a product of secondary chemical changes. The bacterium synthesizes organic compounds from mineral substances during growth. The ratio of thiosulfate-sulfur oxidized to carbon assimilated was 125:1, with 4.7 per cent of the energy of oxidation recovered as organic cell substance. This bacterium is a strict autotroph.

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