Archives of Microbiology

, Volume 150, Issue 5, pp 465–470 | Cite as

The carbon monoxide- and oxygen-reacting haemoproteins of Streptomyces clavuligerus: cytochrome aa3 is the predominant terminal oxidase of the respiratory chain

  • Robert I. Scott
  • Robert K. Poole
Original Papers


The nature of the carbon monoxide- and oxygen-reacting haemoproteins in the respiratory chain of the filamentous antibiotic-producing bacterium Streptomyces clavuligerus has been investigated. CO-difference (i.e. CO+ reduced minus reduced) spectra of intact cells showed the presence of cytochrome aa3, a CO binding b-type cytochrome, and a pigment resembling cytochrome d. In addition, cells that were approaching the end of the growth phase showed the presence of cytochrome P450: this pigment was undetectable in cells harvested early in the growth cycle. High speed centrifugation of cell-free extracts prepared from cells broken by sonication showed that cytochrome aa3 was tightly membrane-bound and that cytochrome P450 was soluble. Inhibition of oxygen uptake rates of cells by cyanide indicated that one component, which showed 50% inhibition at 2–4 mM CN, was acting as major terminal oxidase: this was observed in cells harvested from all stages of growth. Photodissociation (i. e. photolysed, CO reduced minus CO reduced) spectra at-118°C, in the absence of oxygen, showed cytochrome aa3 to be the sole photolysable CO-reacting haemoprotein. At higher temperature (-87°C), in the presence of oxygen, cytochrome aa3 formed a complex with oxygen that could not be photolysed by similar intensities of light. By raising the temperature to-43°C, the oxidation of c-type cytochromes was observed. It is concluded that cytochrome aa3 is the predominant terminal oxidase in S. clavuligerus and that the other CO reacting haemoproteins, of unknown function, are unlikely to be oxidases.

Key words

Cytochrome aa3 Cytochrome P450 Respiratory chain Streptomyces clavuligerus Oxygen uptake CO-reacting haemoproteins Oxygen metabolism 


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 1988

Authors and Affiliations

  • Robert I. Scott
    • 1
  • Robert K. Poole
    • 2
  1. 1.School of BiotechnologyPolytechnic of Central LondonLondonUK
  2. 2.Department of MicrobiologyKings College LondonLondonUK

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