Special Issue "Biomineralization in Ore Forming Processes"

A special issue of Minerals (ISSN 2075-163X). This special issue belongs to the section "Environmental Mineralogy and Biogeochemistry".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: 15 June 2020.

Special Issue Editors

Prof. Dr. Stephanos P. Kilias
E-Mail Website
Guest Editor
Faculty of Geology and Geoenvironment, National Kapodistrian University of Athens, Athens 157 72, Greece
Interests: Biomineralization; Biogeochemistry; Mn- and Fe-oxides; hydrothermal vent systems; Hellenic Volcanic Arc
Dr. Ernest Chi Fru
E-Mail Website
Guest Editor
Geomicrobiology/Biogeochemistry, School of Earth and Ocean Sciences, Cardiff University, Cardiff CF10 3AT, UK
Interests: Geomicrobiology; Marine biogeochemistry; Earth’s Chemical Evolution; The Evolution of Life
Dr. Magnus Ivarsson
E-Mail Website
Guest Editor
Department of Biology, University of Southern Denmark, Campusvej 55, 5230 Odense, Denmark Department of Paleobiology, Swedish Museum of Natural History, Frescativägen 40, 114 18 Stockholm, Sweden
Interests: deep biosphere; geobiology; paleobiology; fossilized microorganisms
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Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

Recently, biomineralization, i.e., active and passive microbial (bacterial, archaeal, and fungal) dissolution and precipitation of a wide variety of economic-grade mineral phases in the natural environment, has gained special scientific and economic interest in low-temperature ore-forming processes. Due to their metabolic ability to control sulfate reduction, Fe and Mn redox reactions, inorganic carbon fixation to organic carbon and the oxidation of the organic matter back to inorganic carbon, microbes actively exert a major influence on the formation of a variety of minerals in surface, supergene, diagenetic, and hydrothermal environments. These include the formation of world-class secondary Cu and Zn–Pb deposits, banded Fe formations, Mn nodules, Mn-carbonates, exhalative massive sulfides, phosphorites, and placer gold deposits. For example, fungi can cause gold oxidation under surface mineral bioweathering conditions, leading to gold mobilization and bioaccumulation. Through their large surface area, microbes in addition to active metabolic processes, passively bind and concentrate economically important elements, making them important particulates in the enrichment of economic grade ores in the environment. Despite these recent advances, understanding the role of microbial biomineralization from the nano- to macro-scale ore-forming process, is still in its infancy and mostly underestimated, and, therefore, constitutes a fruitful area of cutting-edge research. The proposed Special Issue emphasizes the powerful role of microbial biomineralization in low-temperature ore genesis. It highlights crucial questions to enable a wide and truly interdisciplinary viewpoint, by combining concepts and new high-resolution methods from different areas, e.g., geochemistry, mineralogy, biology, to build a comprehensive picture of microbial biomineralization processes in ore formation, at the nanoscale to the global scale. Thus, we invite studies, from macro- to molecular scale, including innovative spectroscopy, microscopy, and omics-based investigations.

Prof. Dr. Stephanos P. Kilias
Dr. Ernest Chi Fru
Dr. Magnus Ivarsson
Guest Editors

Manuscript Submission Information

Manuscripts should be submitted online at www.mdpi.com by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. All papers will be peer-reviewed. Accepted papers will be published continuously in the journal (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as short communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.

Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a single-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. Minerals is an international peer-reviewed open access monthly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 1400 CHF (Swiss Francs). Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.


  • ore mineral
  • bacterial
  • archaeal
  • fungal
  • metal sulfide
  • Fe oxide
  • Mn oxide
  • carbon fixation
  • sulfate reduction
  • geobiology
  • global geobiological cycles
  • geomicrobiology

Published Papers (1 paper)

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Open AccessArticle
Exceptional Preservation of Fungi as H2-Bearing Fluid Inclusions in an Early Quaternary Paleo-Hydrothermal System at Cape Vani, Milos, Greece
Minerals 2019, 9(12), 749; https://doi.org/10.3390/min9120749 - 03 Dec 2019
The production of H2 in hydrothermal systems and subsurface settings is almost exclusively assumed a result of abiotic processes, particularly serpentinization of ultramafic rocks. The origin of H2 in environments not hosted in ultramafic rocks is, as a rule, unjustifiably linked [...] Read more.
The production of H2 in hydrothermal systems and subsurface settings is almost exclusively assumed a result of abiotic processes, particularly serpentinization of ultramafic rocks. The origin of H2 in environments not hosted in ultramafic rocks is, as a rule, unjustifiably linked to abiotic processes. Additionally, multiple microbiological processes among both prokaryotes and eukaryotes are known to involve H2-production, of which anaerobic fungi have been put forward as a potential source of H2 in subsurface environments, which is still unconfirmed. Here, we report fungal remains exceptionally preserved as fluid inclusions in hydrothermal quartz from feeder quartz-barite veins from the Cape Vani Fe-Ba-Mn ore on the Greek island of Milos. The inclusions possess filamentous or near-spheroidal morphologies interpreted as remains of fungal hyphae and spores, respectively. They were characterized by microthermometry, Raman spectroscopy, and staining of exposed inclusions with WGA-FITC under fluorescence microscopy. The spheroidal aqueous inclusions interpreted as fungal spores are unique by their coating of Mn-oxide birnessite, and gas phase H2. A biological origin of the H2 resulting from anaerobic fungal respiration is suggested. We propose that biologically produced H2 by micro-eukaryotes is an unrecognized source of H2 in hydrothermal systems that may support communities of H2-dependent prokaryotes. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Biomineralization in Ore Forming Processes)

Planned Papers

The below list represents only planned manuscripts. Some of these manuscripts have not been received by the Editorial Office yet. Papers submitted to MDPI journals are subject to peer-review.

1. authors:Magnus Ivarsson*; Stephanos Kilias; Curt Broman; Anna Neubeck ; Henrik Drake; Ernest Chi Fru; Stefan Bengtson; Jonathan Naden; Kleopatra Detsi; Martin Whitehouse

Title: Exceptional preservation of fungi as H2-bearing fluid inclusions in an early Quaternary paleo-hydrothermal system at Cape Vani, Milos, Greece

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