Sulfur Oxygenase Reductase in Different Acidithiobacillus Caldus-Like Strains


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The elemental sulfur oxidising enzyme Sulfur Oxygenase Reductase (SOR) is very well investigated in acidothermophilic archaea, such as Acidianus brierleyi and Sulfolobus metallicus. In contrast, not much is known about the biochemistry of elemental sulfur oxidation in acidophilic bacteria. Recently, however, the SOR-encoding gene has been found also in a bacterial strain closely related to the moderate thermophile Acidithiobacillus caldus. Confusingly, for the latter species, also the involvement of the SOX system as well as thiosulfate:quinone oxidoreductase (TQO) and tetrathionate hydrolase (TTH) in sulfur compound oxidation has been proposed based on genome analysis. In this study, we have detected the sor-gene in other Acidithiobacillus caldus-like strains, isolated from various bioleaching habitats, indicating that SOR plays an important role in sulfur oxidation in this species. Based on sequence comparison, the new bacterial sor-genes are closely related and distant from the known archaeal sequences as well as from the SOR found in the neutrophilic bacterium Aquifex aeolicus. In addition, SOR activity has been detected in crude cell extracts from all Acidithiobacillus caldus-like strains tested. The enzyme is truly thermophilic as highest activities were achieved at 65 °C, which is far beyond the growth optimum of Acidithiobacillus caldus. This finding may give rise to the question whether the presence of SOR in Acidithiobacillus caldus is only relevant while growing at elevated temperatures. Currently, experiments are performed for testing this hypothesis (comparing growth and enzyme activities at 30 vs. 45 °C).



Advanced Materials Research (Volumes 71-73)

Edited by:

Edgardo R. Donati, Marisa R. Viera, Eduardo L. Tavani, María A. Giaveno, Teresa L. Lavalle, Patricia A. Chiacchiarini




C. Janosch et al., "Sulfur Oxygenase Reductase in Different Acidithiobacillus Caldus-Like Strains", Advanced Materials Research, Vols. 71-73, pp. 239-242, 2009

Online since:

May 2009




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