The Inner Life of a Microbial Fuel Cell (image) Arizona State University Caption Bacteria have evolved to utilize almost any chemical as a food source. In the microbial fuel cell, bacteria form a biofilm, a living community that is attached to the electrode by a sticky sugar and protein coated biofilm matrix. When grown without oxygen, the byproducts of bacterial metabolism of waste include carbon dioxide, electrons and hydrogen ions. Electrons produced by the bacteria are shuttled onto the electrode by the biofilm matrix, creating a thriving ecosystem called the biofilm anode and generating electricity. Credit Janelle Curtis, Biodesign Institute at Arizona State University Usage Restrictions None Disclaimer: AAAS and EurekAlert! are not responsible for the accuracy of news releases posted to EurekAlert! by contributing institutions or for the use of any information through the EurekAlert system.