The utilization of two crude oil samples of different quality at 4 and 30 C has been studied by using pure and mixed bacterial cultures obtained by enrichment procedures. Growth, emulsification, and utilization occurred readily at both temperatures. The crude oil residue is increased in specific gravity and readily sediments out of solution. A comparison of the chemical analysis of the oils by liquid and gas-liquid chromatographic procedures before and after growth showed that the n-saturate fraction had been preferentially used. Some utilization of the aromatic fraction also occurred. Enrichments obtained with a high-quality crude oil were not as effective in utilizing a lower quality crude oil as sole carbon source as a population enriched on the low-quality crude oil.
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