Escherichia coli will reduce selenite (SeO 3 2- ) andselenate (SeO 4 2- ) to elemental selenium Se 0 . Seleniumwill also become incorporated intoproteins as part of the amino acids selenocysteine or selenomethionine.The reaction of selenitewith glutathione produces selenodiglutathione (GS-Se-GS). Selenodiglutathioneand itssubsequent reduction to glutathioselenol (GS-SeH) are likely the key intermediatesin the possiblemetabolic fates of selenium. This review presents the possible pathwaysinvolving selenium in E. coli. Identification of intermediates and potentialprocesses from uptake of the toxic oxyanions through to theirdetoxification will assist us inunderstanding the complexities of metalloid oxyanion metabolism in thesebacteria.