Although this series of ten reports focuses on the microbiology of a single bacterium namely the betaproteobacterium Cupriavidus metallidurans CH34, this volume is of general interest for several reasons. Firstly, this unusual multiple toxic metal ion-resistant bacterium has been a model for how microbes handle such toxic metal (loids) from the time of its first isolation (Mergeay et al. 1978, 1985). Moreover, it continues to be a useful model, as seen in this series of reports as well as in any search of the literature, used for an expanding range of interests from metal response physiology (Nies et al. 1990, 1989; Nies 2000; Roux et al. 2001; Sendra et al. 2006) and basic molecular genetics (Lejeune et al. 1983), to genomics (the organism is unusual in having two chromosomes plus two large plasmids; Mergeay et al. 2003), microbial ecology (Vander Auwera, this series), to applications in environmental biotechnology (Diels, this series) and even in space research (Leys, this series).