SUMMARY: The spore wall of is composed largely of structural protein, in contrast to the peptide+amino sugar+sugar complex of the wall of vegetative cells. Alanine, glutamic acid, αε-diaminopimelic acid, glucosamine, muramic acid, glucose, ribitol compounds and O-ester groups are the principal constituents of the vegetative cell walls. All of the compounds characteristic of the peptide+amino sugar+sugar complex have been detected in the spore wall preparations but they account only for a minor part of the spore wall. The walls of the vegetative bacteria have a high phosphorus content and contain appreciable amounts of a ribitol phosphate polymer. Spore walls and vegetative cell walls differ also in the nature of their N-terminal amino acids; glycine is the principal N-terminal amino acid of the spore wall protein whereas alanine is the main amino acid found in the wall of vegetative cells.


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