1887

Abstract

Efflux pumps export a wide variety of proteinaceous and non-proteinaceous substrates across the Gram-negative cell wall. For the filamentous cyanobacterium sp. strain PCC 7120, the ATP-driven glycolipid efflux pump DevBCA–TolC has been shown to be crucial for the differentiation of N-fixing heterocysts from photosynthetically active vegetative cells. In this study, a homologous system was described. All0809/8/7–TolC form a typical ATP-driven efflux pump as shown by surface plasmon resonance. This putative exporter is also involved in diazotrophic growth of sp. PCC 7120. A mutant in encoding the periplasmic membrane fusion protein of the pump was not able to grow without combined nitrogen. Although heterocysts of this mutant were not distinguishable from those of the wild-type in light and electron micrographs, they were impaired in providing the microoxic environment necessary for N fixation. RT-PCR of transcripts and localization studies on All0807–GFP revealed that All0809/8/7 was initially downregulated during heterocyst maturation and upregulated at later stages of heterocyst formation in all cells of the filament. A substrate of the efflux pump could not be identified in ATP hydrolysis assays. We discuss a role for All0809/8/7–TolC in maintaining the continuous periplasm and how this would be of special importance for heterocyst differentiation.

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2012-10-01
2019-10-23
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