Microbial origin of desert varnish

Ronald Dorn, T. M. Oberlander

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

169 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Scanning electron microscopy and energy dispersive x-ray analyses of desert varnish reveal that microorganisms concentrate ambient manganese that becomes greatly enhanced in brown to black varnish. Specific characteristics of desert varnish and of varnish bacteria support a microbial origin for manganese-rich films. Varnish microbes can be cultured and produce laboratory manganese films. Accordingly, natural desert varnish and also manganese-rich rock varnishes in nondesert environments appear to be a product of microbial activity.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1245-1247
Number of pages3
JournalScience
Volume213
Issue number4513
StatePublished - 1981
Externally publishedYes

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desert
manganese
rock varnish
microbial activity
varnish
microorganism
scanning electron microscopy
bacterium
energy

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General

Cite this

Dorn, R., & Oberlander, T. M. (1981). Microbial origin of desert varnish. Science, 213(4513), 1245-1247.

Microbial origin of desert varnish. / Dorn, Ronald; Oberlander, T. M.

In: Science, Vol. 213, No. 4513, 1981, p. 1245-1247.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Dorn, R & Oberlander, TM 1981, 'Microbial origin of desert varnish', Science, vol. 213, no. 4513, pp. 1245-1247.
Dorn R, Oberlander TM. Microbial origin of desert varnish. Science. 1981;213(4513):1245-1247.
Dorn, Ronald ; Oberlander, T. M. / Microbial origin of desert varnish. In: Science. 1981 ; Vol. 213, No. 4513. pp. 1245-1247.
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