Genomic Science Program. Click to return to home page.
Department of Energy Office of Science. Click to visit main DOE SC site.

Genomic Science Program

Radiation-Resistant Bug's Survival Tied to High Levels of Manganese

Michael Daly (Uniformed Services University of the Health Sciences), Jim Fredrickson (PNNL) and others have published a paper in Science Express ( on 30 October 2004 tying the extreme radiation resistance of Deinococcus radiodurans to high levels of manganese and low levels of iron. In the past, researchers have suggested that this microbe's extraordinary hardiness might be related to the unusual ring-like structure of its genome or the 4-8 genome copies carried by each cell. Daly and colleagues now show that chromosome organization is unlikely to play a role in radiation resistance and that a high concentration of manganese ions relative to iron ions is essential to its ability to survive gamma radiation. The authors suggest that the manganese may not provide protection from the initial radiation; rather, it protects cells against harmful reactive oxygen species that accumulate during the recovery from radiation.

"Secret of Radiation-Proof Bugs Proposed" Nature 30 September 2004


  • JGI 13th Annual Genomics of Energy and Environment Meeting March 13-16, 2018. See website for dates and more information. [10/17]
  • Department of Energy Provides $40 Million for Four DOE Bioenergy Research Centers news article [07/17]
  • More News and Announcements »


Technologies for Characterizing Molecular and Cellular Systems Relevant to Bioenergy and Environment [9/17]

Carbon Cycling Projects Awarded [10/16]

Plant Feedstock Genomics for Bioenergy Abstracts [9/16]

Bioenergy Research Centers
Key Advances Update: 2014-2016 [06/16]

BER Biological Systems Science Division Strategic Plan [10/15]

BER BSSD funds the Genomic Science Program


Publication Highlights

    • Publication Highlights »
    • Search Highlights