1887

Abstract

In cyanobacteria of the genus , there are three length variants of , the gene that encodes the outer protein of the gas vesicle. Sequence analyses indicated that the three allelic variants of differ principally in the presence or absence of a 99 nt and a 213 nt section. Strains with the new variant, , which encodes a 28 kDa form of GvpC, produce gas vesicles that collapse at the relatively low critical pressure ( ) of 061–075 MPa. The authors have identified 12 classes of genotypes that differ in the number and arrangement of alternating genes and in the presence of Ω, a fragment of . The gene was found to be the most common variant of amongst 71 strains of isolated from Nordic lakes: 34 strains contained only ; 22 strains, which possessed only the shorter gene, produced gas vesicles with a higher of 076–091 MPa; and 15 strains, which possessed both and , also produced the stronger gas vesicles. Genotypes with only the genes were more common amongst green strains (33 out of 38) than red strains (one out of 33). It is suggested that there is competition between the strains producing the two types of gas vesicles, with the stronger forms favoured in lakes deeper than 60 m, in which the combination of cell turgor pressure and hydrostatic pressure can collapse the weaker gas vesicles. The fact that none of the Nordic lakes are deeper than 67 m would explain the absence of the -containing strains that produce even narrower gas vesicles of 10–12 MPa, which are common in the much deeper Lake Zürich.

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2000-08-01
2020-01-29
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