Definition of nitrifying bacterium
: any of various aerobic gram-negative bacteria (as of the genera Nitrosomonas, Nitrosococcus, and Nitrobacter) commonly found in soil and water and obtaining energy through the process of nitrification They are nitrifying bacteria, formerly believed to occur only in the soil and natural water systems, where they play key roles “fixing” nitrogen and making this element available to growing plants. — Bernard Dixon, The Independent (London), 16 Nov. 1992 ◆Nitrifying bacteria are sometimes classified in the paraphyletic family (Nitrobacteraceae).
Start your free trial today and get unlimited access to America's largest dictionary, with:
- More than 250,000 words that aren't in our free dictionary
- Expanded definitions, etymologies, and usage notes
- Advanced search features
- Ad free!
First Known Use of nitrifying bacterium
Seen and Heard
What made you want to look up nitrifying bacterium? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).