Articles | Volume 18, issue 12
Reviews and syntheses
21 Jun 2021
Reviews and syntheses |  | 21 Jun 2021

Reviews and syntheses: Heterotrophic fixation of inorganic carbon – significant but invisible flux in environmental carbon cycling

Alexander Braun, Marina Spona-Friedl, Maria Avramov, Martin Elsner, Federico Baltar, Thomas Reinthaler, Gerhard J. Herndl, and Christian Griebler

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Cited articles

Akinyede, R., Taubert, M., Schrumpf, M., Trumbore, S., and Küsel, K.: Rates of dark CO2 fixation are driven by microbial biomass in a temperate forest soil, Soil Biol. Biochem., 150, 107950,, 2020. 
Alonso-Sáez, L., Galand, P. E., Casamayor, E. O., Pedrós-Alió, C., and Bertilsson, S.: High bicarbonate assimilation in the dark by Arctic bacteria, ISME J., 4, 1581–1590, 2010. 
Arístegui, J., Gasol, J. M., Duarte, C. M., and Herndl, G. J.: Microbial oceanography of the dark ocean's pelagic realm, Limnol. Oceanogr., 54, 1501–1529, 2009. 
Attwood, P. V.: The structure and the mechanism of action of pyruvate-carboxylase, Int. J. Biochem. Cell B, 27, 231–249, 1995. 
Baltar, F. and Herndl, G. J.: Ideas and perspectives: Is dark carbon fixation relevant for oceanic primary production estimates?, Biogeosciences, 16, 3793–3799,, 2019. 
Short summary
It is known that CO2 fixation by photoautotrophic organisms is the major sink from the atmosphere. While biologists are aware that CO2 fixation also occurs in heterotrophic organisms, this route of inorganic carbon, and its quantitative role, is hardly recognized in biogeochemistry. We demonstrate that a considerable amount of CO2 is fixed annually through anaplerotic reactions in heterotrophic organisms, and a significant quantity of inorganic carbon is temporally sequestered in biomass.
Final-revised paper