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Photosynthesis Research

, Volume 104, Issue 2–3, pp 163–176 | Cite as

Inorganic sulfur oxidizing system in green sulfur bacteria

  • Hidehiro Sakurai
  • Takuro Ogawa
  • Michiko Shiga
  • Kazuhito Inoue
Review

Abstract

Green sulfur bacteria use various reduced sulfur compounds such as sulfide, elemental sulfur, and thiosulfate as electron donors for photoautotrophic growth. This article briefly summarizes what is known about the inorganic sulfur oxidizing systems of these bacteria with emphasis on the biochemical aspects. Enzymes that oxidize sulfide in green sulfur bacteria are membrane-bound sulfide-quinone oxidoreductase, periplasmic (sometimes membrane-bound) flavocytochrome c sulfide dehydrogenase, and monomeric flavocytochrome c (SoxF). Some green sulfur bacteria oxidize thiosulfate by the multienzyme system called either the TOMES (thiosulfate oxidizing multi-enzyme system) or Sox (sulfur oxidizing system) composed of the three periplasmic proteins: SoxB, SoxYZ, and SoxAXK with a soluble small molecule cytochrome c as the electron acceptor. The oxidation of sulfide and thiosulfate by these enzymes in vitro is assumed to yield two electrons and result in the transfer of a sulfur atom to persulfides, which are subsequently transformed to elemental sulfur. The elemental sulfur is temporarily stored in the form of globules attached to the extracellular surface of the outer membranes. The oxidation pathway of elemental sulfur to sulfate is currently unclear, although the participation of several proteins including those of the dissimilatory sulfite reductase system etc. is suggested from comparative genomic analyses.

Keywords

Cytochrome Green sulfur bacteria Sox Sulfide dehydrogenase Thiosulfate 

Abbreviations

APS

Adenosine phosphosulfate

cyt

Cytochrome

FCSD

Flavo-cytochrome c sulfide dehydrogenase

GSB

Green sulfur bacteria

ISP

Iron–sulfur protein

RC

Reaction center

S0

Zero-valence sulfur

Sox

Sulfur oxidizing enzyme system

SQR

Sulfide-quinone reductase

TOMES

Thiosulfate oxidizing multi-enzyme system

Notes

Acknowledgment

We thank M. Kitashima for comparative genomic analyses and preparation of the figures. This work was supported in part by the Global COE Program (Integrative Life Science Based on the Study of Biosignaling Mechanisms) and by the High-tech Research Center project, MEXT, Japan to KI.

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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 2010

Authors and Affiliations

  • Hidehiro Sakurai
    • 1
    • 3
  • Takuro Ogawa
    • 4
  • Michiko Shiga
    • 2
  • Kazuhito Inoue
    • 1
    • 2
    • 4
  1. 1.Research Institute for Photosynthetic Hydrogen ProductionKanagawa UniversityHiratsukaJapan
  2. 2.Department of Biological SciencesKanagawa UniversityHiratsukaJapan
  3. 3.Department of Biology, School of EducationWaseda UniversityTokyoJapan
  4. 4.Graduate School of ScienceUniversity of TokyoBunkyo, TokyoJapan

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