Archives of Microbiology

, Volume 144, Issue 4, pp 398–404

Protein composition of the carboxysomes of Thiobacillus neapolitanus

  • Yolande A. Holthuijzen
  • Jan F. L. van Breemen
  • J. Gijs Kuenen
  • Wil N. Konings
Original Papers

DOI: 10.1007/BF00409891

Cite this article as:
Holthuijzen, Y.A., van Breemen, J.F.L., Kuenen, J.G. et al. Arch. Microbiol. (1986) 144: 398. doi:10.1007/BF00409891


For purifying carboxysomes of Thiobacillus neapolitanus an isolation procedure was developed which resulted in carboxysomes free from whole cells, protoplasts and cell fragments. These purified carboxysomes are composed of 8 proteins and at the most of 13 polypeptides. The two most abundant proteins which make up more than 60% of the carboxysomes, are ribulose-1,5-bisphosphate carboxylase and a glycoprotein with a molecular weight of 54,000. The shell of the carboxysomes consists of four glycoproteins, one also with a molecular weight of 54,000. The other proteins are present in minor quantities. Ribulose-1,5-bisphosphate carboxylase is the only enzyme which could be detected in the carboxysomes and 3-phosphoglycerate was the only product formed during incubation with ribulose-1,5-diphosphate and bicarbonate. The supernatant of a broken and centrifuged carboxysome suspension contained the large subunit of ribulose-1,5-bisphosphate carboxylase. The small subunit of ribulose-1,5-bisphosphate carboxylase was found in the pellet together with the shell proteins which indicates that the small subunit of ribulose-1,5-bisphosphate carboxylase is connected to the shell.

Key words

Carboxysomes Polyhedral bodies Protein composition Ribulose-1,5-bisphosphate carboxylase Shell glycoproteins 



ribulose-1,5-bisphosphate carboxylase


phenylmethylsulfonyl fluoride


gelectrophoresis, polyacrylamide gelelectrophoresis


sodium dodecyl sulphate


crossed immunoelectrophoresis


isoelectric focusing

Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 1986

Authors and Affiliations

  • Yolande A. Holthuijzen
    • 1
  • Jan F. L. van Breemen
    • 2
  • J. Gijs Kuenen
    • 3
  • Wil N. Konings
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of MicrobiologyUniversity of GroningenHarenThe Netherlands
  2. 2.Biochemical LaboratoryUniversity of GroningenGroningenThe Netherlands
  3. 3.Department of MicrobiologyTechnical UniversityDelftThe Netherlands

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