The nutritional and temperature requirements of a naturally occurring mixed culture of thermophilic microorganisms were studied. Investigations concerning the effect of temperature on the growth characteristics of the mixed culture showed that the rate of growth was highest between 55 and 58°C. Furthermore, it was found that the minimal nutritional requirements for maximum growth of these microorganisms included methionine, magnesium, calcium, and the necessary carbon, nitrogen and phosphorus sources. It was shown that a mixed culture was nutritionally less fastidious than the pure cultures of individual organisms isolated from the mixed culture; this observation illustrated the possibility of symbiotic growth of thermophilic microorganisms insofar as meeting their individual nutritional requirements.

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