autotroph

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autotroph

(ôt`ətrōf'), in biology, an organism capable of synthesizing its own organic substances from inorganic compounds. Autotrophs produce their own sugars, lipids, and amino acids using carbon dioxide as a source of carbon, and ammonia or nitrates as a source of nitrogen. Organisms that use light for the energy to synthesize organic compounds are called photosynthetic autotrophs; organisms that oxidize such compounds as hydrogen sulfide (H2S) to obtain energy are called chemosynthetic autotrophs, or chemotrophs. Photosynthetic autotrophs include the green plants, certain algae, and the pigmented sulfur bacteria (see photosynthesisphotosynthesis
, process in which green plants, algae, and cyanobacteria utilize the energy of sunlight to manufacture carbohydrates from carbon dioxide and water in the presence of chlorophyll. Some of the plants that lack chlorophyll, e.g.
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). Chemotrophs include the iron bacteria, the nitrifying bacteria, and the nonpigmented sulfur bacteria (see chemosynthesischemosynthesis,
process in which carbohydrates are manufactured from carbon dioxide and water using chemical nutrients as the energy source, rather than the sunlight used for energy in photosynthesis. Much life on earth is fueled directly or indirectly by sunlight.
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). Heterotrophsheterotroph
, living organism that obtains its energy from carbohydrates and other organic material. All animals and most bacteria and fungi are heterotrophic. In contrast, autotrophs are organisms that use inorganic substances as energy sources and carbon dioxide as a carbon source.
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 are organisms that must obtain their energy from organic compounds.

autotroph

[′ȯd·ō‚träf]
(biology)
An organism capable of synthesizing organic nutrients directly from simple inorganic substances, such as carbon dioxide and inorganic nitrogen.
References in periodicals archive ?
The smaller plankton, the microplankton, that account for much of the mass of the autotrophic plankton, was retained by the finest nets used, with a theoretical pore size of 40 [micro]m.
Autotrophic nitrifiers were present at low levels in all stands, and relatively abundant and active in all cultivated and pastured sites.
A system with positive NEP (GPP - R [is greater than] 0) is autotrophic, and a system with negative NEP is heterotrophic.
Total autotrophic bacteria (TAB) showed a high density during the sixth week, particularly in the treatments with intermediate probiotic concentration P1.
Martikainen PJ (1985) Nitrous oxide emission associated with autotrophic ammonium oxidation in acid coniferous forest soil.
Engineering analysis of the stoichiometry of photoautotrophic, autotrophic, and heterotrophic removal of ammonia-nitrogen in aquaculture systems.
Biologically fertilization of fish rearing pond means stimulation of primary productivity (planktons) through autotrophic and heterotrophic pathways which are preferred food for smaller fish in general and bigger in specific (Enamul et al.
Like plants on land, autotrophic phytoplankton use photosynthesis to turn carbon dioxide and water into oxygen and organic carbon compounds.
According to Preece and Sutter (1991) acclimatization will allow the plant to reach a state of autotrophic growing (Teixeira da Silva et al.