Inhibitory Effect of High Concentrations of Ferric Ions on the Activity of Acidithiobacillus ferrooxidans

Yoshishige Kawabe, Chihiro Inoue, Koichi Suto, Tadashi Chida

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

34 Citations (Scopus)


The influence of high concentrations of ferric ions on the biochemical activity of Acidithiobacillus ferrooxidans was studied using intact cells. The specific oxidation rate of ferrous ions decreased with increasing ferric ion concentration. Lineweaver-Burk plots revealed typical competitive inhibition kinetics, because the slopes varied with the ferric ion concentration. A linear relationship between the slope and the square of the ferric ion concentration revealed that the iron-oxidizing enzyme system of A. ferrooxidans was competitively inhibited by about two molecules of ferric ion. The kinetic equation based on this inhibition model agreed with the experimental observation at a high ferric ion concentration where the bacterium is usually exposed in bioleaching and biooxidation plants.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)375-379
Number of pages5
JournalJournal of Bioscience and Bioengineering
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 2003


  • Acidithiobacillus ferrooxidans
  • Bioleaching
  • Biooxidation
  • Competitive inhibition
  • Ferric ion
  • Ferrous ion oxidation
  • Kinetics

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biotechnology
  • Bioengineering
  • Applied Microbiology and Biotechnology


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