Ptychography of a Magnetotactic Bacterium
WHERE: Advanced Light Source Scanning Transmission
X-ray Microscope (STXM11.0.2)
WHAT: Spectro-ptychography X-ray absorption and X-ray Magnetic Cicular Dichroism at sub-10 nm resolution
Magnetotactic bacteria (MTB) synthesize chains of magnetic nanocrystals
(magnetosomes) that interact with the Earth's magnetic field like
an inner compass needle, simplifying their search for their optimum
environment at the oxic-anoxic interface.
At ALS beamlines 126.96.36.199 and 11.0.2, we have measured ptychographic absorption and phase spectra of magnetosomes (~40-50 nm in size) inside a single cell of a marine MTB (Magnetovibrio blakemorei strain MV-1). The spectra of mature magnetosomes, immature magnetosomes, precursor regions, and the gaps between magnetosome chains differ, indicaitng that different iron species can coexist in a single cell.
From these results we proposed a model in which soluble Fe(II) is taken up from the environment, is partially oxidized to Fe(III), which in turn is then oxidized and transformed into hematite and ultimately into magnetite. In addition, ptychography ay BL 11.0.2 was used to measure the x-ray magnetic circular dichroism (XMCD) phase and absorption spectra of both extracellular and intracellular magnetosomes. Fe 2p XMCD probes the magnetism of magnetitein a site-specific manner. These experiments demonstrate that ptychography, which combines high spatial resolution, high-sensitivity chemical speciation, and site-specific magnetic information, offers a powerful probe for biomineralization studies.
Publication: X.H. Zhu, A.P. Hitchcock, D.A. Bazylinski, P. Denes, J. Joseph, U. Lins, S. Marchesini, H.-W. Shiu, T. Tyliszczak and D.A. Shapiro, Measuring spectroscopy and magnetism of extracted and intracellular magnetosomes using soft X-ray ptychography, Proc. Nat. Acad. Sci. 113 (51) (2016) E8219-E8227 doi:10.1073/pnas.1610260114
ALS Science Brief (published 14 Mar 2017) https://als.lbl.gov/ptychography-bacteriums-inner-compass/
© 2017 A.P. Hitchcock / McMaster University
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