The prevalence of lipids devoid of phosphorus suggests that the availability of phosphorus limits microbial growth and activity in many anoxic, stratified environments. To better understand the response of anaerobic bacteria to phosphate limitation and starvation, this study combines microscopic and lipid analyses with the measurements of fitness of pooled barcoded transposon mutants of the model sulfate reducing bacterium Desulfovibrio alaskensis G20. Phosphate-limited G20 has lower growth rates and replaces more than 90% of its membrane phospholipids by a mixture of monoglycosyl diacylglycerol (MGDG), glycuronic acid diacylglycerol (GADG) and ornithine lipids, lacks polyphosphate granules, and synthesizes other cellular inclusions. Analysesmore »
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