Archives of Microbiology

, Volume 104, Issue 1, pp 77–82 | Cite as

Formation of reaction centers and light-harvesting bacteriochlorophyll-protein complexes in Rhodopseudomonas capsulata

  • Karl-Friedrich Nieth
  • Gerhart Drews


Formation of the photosynthetic apparatus was induced in aerobically grown dark cultures of Rhodopseudomonas capsulata by lowering of the oxygen tension.

Besides the wild type strain the carotenoid-less mutant strain A1a+ was investigated. Both strains exhibited initially a decrease of the molar ratio of total bacteriochlorophyll (Bchl) to reaction center (RC) Bchl, followed by an increase. Synthesis of RC-Bchl preceded the synthesis of light-harvesting (LH) Bchl.

Activities of photophosphorylation in membrane preparations, isolated from cultures after different periods of incubation at low aeration, decreased on the basis of total Bchl from about 9 to 2 μmole ATP/μmole total Bchl·min, whereas the rate on the basis of RC-Bchl remained constant (about 500 μmole ATP/μmole RC-Bchl·min).

Under the same conditions the membrane proteins were labelled with U−14C-protein hydrolysate. Corresponding to RC-Bchl the synthesis of RC-proteins dominated during the first 30 min of incubation at pO2 below 3 mmHg. After 45–60 min of membrane formation at low aeration the synthesis of LH-complex proteins exceeded the synthesis of RC proteins. The correlations between protein and Bchl synthesis in the sequential formation of RC- and LH-complexes are discussed.

Key words

Membrane Differentiation Reaction Center Bacteriochlorophyll Antenna-Pigment Complex Bacteriochlorophyll-Protein Association Photosynthetic Bacteria 





counts per minute


light harvesting or antenna




reaction center


sodium dodecyl sulfate


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 1975

Authors and Affiliations

  • Karl-Friedrich Nieth
    • 1
  • Gerhart Drews
    • 1
  1. 1.Lehrstuhl für MikrobiologieInstitut für Biologie II der UniversitätFreiburg i. B.

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