Structure, morphology and crystal growth of anisotropic magnetite crystals in magnetotactic bacteria

Nicholas Sparks, Stephen Mann, R.P. Blakemore

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

Bacterial magnetite particles of anisotropic morphology have been studied by high-resolution transmission electron microscopy. Lattice images of individual crystals are consistent with a well-ordered magnetite cubic inverse spinel structure. The idealized morphology of the biogenic crystals is based on an elongated cubo-octahedral form comprising a hexagonal prism of {111} and {100} faces capped by (1̄1̄1) and (111̄) faces with associated {111} and {100} truncations. Analysis of many particles of diverse size suggests that crystal growth takes place in two stages. The first stage is associated with the formation of well-ordered, isotropic, single-domain crystals of cubo-octahedral morphology. In this stage the crystal length and width develop concurrently up to a size of 20 nm. The second stage involves the anisotropic growth of the isotropic particles along the [112̄] direction. A crystal growth mechanism is postulated which involves the specific nucleation of the (1̄1̄1) face on a surrounding organic membrane. Unidirectional growth then occurs by selective suppression of certain crystallographic axes through spatial and chemical constraints induced by the adjacent organic boundary.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)477-487
JournalProceedings of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences
Volume231
Issue number1265
DOIs
Publication statusPrint publication - 22 Sep 1987

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Ferrosoferric Oxide
magnetite
Crystallization
crystals
Bacteria
crystal
Crystals
bacterium
bacteria
Growth
Transmission Electron Microscopy
Particle Size
Membranes
High resolution transmission electron microscopy
Prisms
Crystal lattices
Nucleation
spinel
nucleation
transmission electron microscopy

Cite this

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title = "Structure, morphology and crystal growth of anisotropic magnetite crystals in magnetotactic bacteria",
abstract = "Bacterial magnetite particles of anisotropic morphology have been studied by high-resolution transmission electron microscopy. Lattice images of individual crystals are consistent with a well-ordered magnetite cubic inverse spinel structure. The idealized morphology of the biogenic crystals is based on an elongated cubo-octahedral form comprising a hexagonal prism of {111} and {100} faces capped by (1̄1̄1) and (111̄) faces with associated {111} and {100} truncations. Analysis of many particles of diverse size suggests that crystal growth takes place in two stages. The first stage is associated with the formation of well-ordered, isotropic, single-domain crystals of cubo-octahedral morphology. In this stage the crystal length and width develop concurrently up to a size of 20 nm. The second stage involves the anisotropic growth of the isotropic particles along the [112̄] direction. A crystal growth mechanism is postulated which involves the specific nucleation of the (1̄1̄1) face on a surrounding organic membrane. Unidirectional growth then occurs by selective suppression of certain crystallographic axes through spatial and chemical constraints induced by the adjacent organic boundary.",
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Structure, morphology and crystal growth of anisotropic magnetite crystals in magnetotactic bacteria. / Sparks, Nicholas; Mann, Stephen ; Blakemore, R.P.

In: Proceedings of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences, Vol. 231, No. 1265, 22.09.1987, p. 477-487.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

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AB - Bacterial magnetite particles of anisotropic morphology have been studied by high-resolution transmission electron microscopy. Lattice images of individual crystals are consistent with a well-ordered magnetite cubic inverse spinel structure. The idealized morphology of the biogenic crystals is based on an elongated cubo-octahedral form comprising a hexagonal prism of {111} and {100} faces capped by (1̄1̄1) and (111̄) faces with associated {111} and {100} truncations. Analysis of many particles of diverse size suggests that crystal growth takes place in two stages. The first stage is associated with the formation of well-ordered, isotropic, single-domain crystals of cubo-octahedral morphology. In this stage the crystal length and width develop concurrently up to a size of 20 nm. The second stage involves the anisotropic growth of the isotropic particles along the [112̄] direction. A crystal growth mechanism is postulated which involves the specific nucleation of the (1̄1̄1) face on a surrounding organic membrane. Unidirectional growth then occurs by selective suppression of certain crystallographic axes through spatial and chemical constraints induced by the adjacent organic boundary.

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