Dictionary > Alkaliphile

Alkaliphile

Definition
noun, plural: alkaliphiles
An organism that can live and thrive in an alkaline environment
Supplement
An alkaliphile is an organism that can live and thrive in an alkaline environment, i.e. with pH ranging from 8.5 to 11. Examples of an alkaline environment are the Soda Lake in Carrizo Plain National Monument, California, the Octopus Spring located in Yellowstone National Park, and the Mono Lake in California’s Eastern Sierra. Carbonate-rich soils are also a typical habitat of alkaliphiles.
Alkaliphiles are able to survive in an alkaline environment because of a membrane system that actively pumps H+ across the cell membrane into their cytoplasm and therefore able to maintain pH of about 8.0.1 Others have evolved pH stable enzymes that help them survive an alkaline environment.
Alkaliphiles may be grouped according to their alkalinity requirement for growth and survival:

  • obligate alkaliphiles, i.e. those requiring high pH
  • facultative alkaliphiles, i.e. those that can survive in both alkaline and normal conditions
  • haloalkaliphiles, i.e. those requiring high salt content for survival

Examples of alkaliphiles are Anabaena sp. and Microcystis sp., which are blue-green algal species.
Also called:

  • alkalinophile
  • alkalophile

See also:

  • acidophile
  • extremophile
  • pH
  • Reference(s):

    1 alkaliphile. (n.d.) Segen’s Medical Dictionary. (2011). Retrieved from ://medical-dictionary.thefreedictionary.com/alkaliphile.


    You will also like...

    Homo Species
    The Homo Species

    The evolution of the species of the genus "Homo" led to the emergence of modern humans. Find out more about human evolut..

    Still Water Animals
    Still Water Animals

    Animals living in aquatic habitats have diversified and evolved through time. They eventually occupy ecological niches a..

    Water Cycle
    The Water Cycle

    The water cycle (also referred to as the hydrological cycle) is a system of continuous transfer of water from the air, s..

    Crossing Over and Genetic Diversity
    Inheritance and Probability

    Gregor Mendel, an Austrian monk, is most famous in this field for his study of the phenotype of pea plants, including ..

    Biological Cell schematic diagram
    Biological Cell Introduction

    It only takes one biological cell to create an organism. A single cell is able to keep itself functional through its 'mi..

    Freshwater Ecology
    Freshwater Ecology

    Freshwater ecology focuses on the relations of aquatic organisms to their freshwater habitats. There are two forms of co..