Dictionary > Chemotroph

Chemotroph

Definition
noun, plural: chemotrophs
An organism that obtains energy mainly from carbon dioxide and from other inorganic chemicals through a process called chemosynthesis
Supplement
Chemotrophs are organisms that obtain energy through chemical process called chemosynthesis rather than by photosynthesis. Chemosynthesis is carried out by chemotrophs through the oxidation of electron donors in the environment. Chemotrophs may be chemoautotrophs or chemoheterotroph. Chemoautotrophs are autotrophs. This means they are capable of making their own food through chemosynthesis. Chemosynthesis is a process by which some organisms, such as certain bacteria, use chemical energy to produce carbohydrates. They are capable of utilizing inorganic compounds such as hydrogen sulfide, sulfur, ammonium, and ferrous iron as reducing agents, and synthesize organic compounds from carbon dioxide. Chemoautotrophs are found in hostile habitats such as deep sea vents and where light cannot easily penetrate through. They include the methanogens, halophiles, nitrifiers, thermoacidophiles, sulfur oxidizers, etc.
Chemoheterotrophs are chemotrophs that are heterotrophic organisms. They are not capable of fixing carbon to form their own organic compounds. They may be further classified as chemolithoheterotrophs or chemoorganoheterotrophs. Chemolithoheterotrophs are those that utilize inorganic energy sources whereas chemoorganoheterotrophs are those using organic energy sources.
Word origin: chemo- + troph (nourishment)
See also:

Related form(s):

  • chemotrophic (adjective)


    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..

    Bryophytes
    Bryophytes

    Bryophytes (nonvascular plants) are a plant group characterized by lacking vascular tissues. They include the mosses, th..

    takahē
    Takahē (Porphyrio hochstetteri)

    Meet the colorful takahē, an extremely rare flightless bird. Find out more about its unique features and why they matte..

    Endemic Flora of New Zealand
    New Zealand’s Unique Flora

    If New Zealand has lots of unique animals, it's also got a whole lot of unique plants. Find out more about some of them,..

    Human Reproduction
    Human Reproduction

    Humans are capable of only one mode of reproduction, i.e. sexual reproduction. Haploid sex cells (gametes) are produced ..

    Ecological Research Measuring & Analysis
    Ecological Research: Measuring & Analysis

    This lesson is about the methods used for ecological research, such as quadrat and transect sampling, canopy fogging, an..