Archives of Microbiology

, Volume 148, Issue 1, pp 72–76 | Cite as

Orinithine as a constituent of the peptidoglycan of Chloroflexus aurantiacus, diaminopimelic acid in that of Chlorobium vibrioforme f. thiosulfatophilum

  • U. J. Jürgens
  • J. Meißner
  • U. Fischer
  • W. A. König
  • J. Weckesser
Original Papers


L-Ornithine is the only diamino acid of the peptidoglycan of the gliding phototrophic Chloroflexus aurantiacus. The other constituents are L- and D-alanine, D-glutamic acid, N-acetyl-glucosamine and N-acetyl-muramic acid (in part as muramic acid-6-phosphate), all in approximate equimolar ratios to L-ornithine, aside from small amounts of glycine and histidine. Furthermore unlike typical Gram-negative bacteria, protein is not bound to this peptidoglycan. Instead, the rigid layer (sodium dodecyl sulfate insoluble cell wall fraction) contained large amounts of a complex polysaccharide consisting of sugar O-methyl ethers, hexoses and pentoses. Its binding site is presumably muramic acid-6-phosphate of the peptidoglycan.

In contrast, in Chlorobium vibrioforme f. thiosulfatophilium, meso-diaminopimelic acid was found as the only diamino acid of this peptidoglycan. As with other Gramnegative bacteria, L- and D-alanine, D-glutamic acid, N-acetyl-glucosamine and N-acetyl-muramic acid (no muramic acid-6-phosphate) were observed in approximate equimolar ratios to meso-diaminopimelic acid, except a lower D-alanine content. The rigid layer of Chlorobium vibrioforme f. thiosulfatophilum contained protein, and there were no indications for a complex polysaccharide comparable to that of Chloroflexus aurantiacus.

Key words

Chlorobium Chloroflexus Cell wall Diaminopimelic acid Muramic acid-6-phosphate Ornithine Peptidoglycan-polysaccharide complex 





diaminopimelic acid


combined gas-liquid chromatography/mass spectrometry




glutamic acid




hydrofluoric acid




N-acetyl-muramic acid




sodium dodecyl sulfate


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 1987

Authors and Affiliations

  • U. J. Jürgens
    • 1
  • J. Meißner
    • 1
  • U. Fischer
    • 2
  • W. A. König
    • 3
  • J. Weckesser
    • 1
  1. 1.Institut für Biologie II, Mikrobiologieder Albert-Ludwigs-UniversitätFreiburg i. Br.Federal Republic of Germany
  2. 2.Fachbereich BiologieAG Geomikrobiologie der Universität OldenburgOldenburgFederal Republic of Germany
  3. 3.Institut für Organische ChemieHamburg 13Federal Republic of Germany

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