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Comparison of Maintenance Energy Expenditures and Growth Yields Among Several Rumen Bacteria Grown on Continuous Culture

By James B. Russell and R. L. Baldwin


Maintenance energy expenditures were mesured for five rumen bacteria, Selenomonas ruminantium, Butyrivibrio fibrisolvens, Bacteroides ruminicola, Megasphaera elsdenii, and Streptococcus bovis, by using a complex medium with glucose as the carbon source. Large differences (as high as 8.5-fold) in maintenance energy expenditures were seen among these bacteria. The suggestion is made that maintenance requirements could be a significant determinant of bacterial competition in the rumen. Theoretical maximum growth yields, calculated from double reciprocal plots of yield versus dilution rate, were compared to theoretical YATPmax values in order to estimate minimum molar adenosine 5′-triphosphate yields from glucose for each bacterium. Results showed that relative yield among the bacteria was growth rate dependent. At high dilution rates, both S. ruminantium and S. bovis produced lactate as their principal fermentation product. At lower dilution rates very little lactate was formed and growth yields increased. Acetate and ethanol were the predominant fermentation products of S. bovis at low dilution rates. Other workers have shown that S. ruminantium produces acetate and propionate at low growth rates

Topics: General Microbial Ecology
Year: 1979
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Provided by: PubMed Central
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