Cell Division Mechanism of Corynebacterium glutamicum

  • Michal Letek
  • María Fiuza
  • Almudena F. Villadangos
  • Luís M. Mateos
  • José A. Gil
Part of the Microbiology Monographs book series (MICROMONO, volume 23)


Bacterial cell size and morphology are enormously diverse. The molecular factors of morphogenesis are well understood in certain bacterial models and fairly conserved throughout a broad spectrum of bacterial species, as follows. In most bacteria, the tubulin-like FtsZ protein polymerizes at the mid cell , thereby generating the scaffold of the bacterial cell division septum. Actin-like MreB homologues are required for cell elongation at the lateral walls of Escherichia coli or Bacillus subtilis. Whereas FtsZ is conserved in Corynebacterium glutamicum, mreB homologues are absent in the corynebacterial genomes sequenced to date. Furthermore, in these bacteria, cell elongation occurs at the polar ends in a mycelial fashion. This process is structurally maintained from the inside of the cell by oligomers created through self-interaction of DivIVA, a coiled-coil-rich cytoskeletal protein that interacts with the molecular machinery of the polar cell wall synthesis. In addition, the molecular factors involved in the spatio-temporal regulation of bacterial cell division are also missing in C. glutamicum. However, certain serine/threonine kinases have been reported recently in this organism that could be implicated in a tight regulation of cytokinesis through protein phosphorylation. Since numerous antibiotics target bacterial cell division or cell elongation genes, a detailed understanding of these processes could enable the development of novel antibiotics for treating bacterial infections caused by pathogenic Corynebacteria or by the closely related Mycobacteria, Nocardia, or Rhodococcus.


Cell Elongation Cell Wall Synthesis Corynebacterium Glutamicum Mycolic Acid Molecular Factor 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.



M. Letek and M. Fiuza were beneficiaries of fellowships from the Ministerio de Educación y Ciencia (Spain); A.F. Villadangos from the Junta de Castilla y León. This work was funded by grants from the Junta de Castilla y León (Ref. LE040A07 and LE028A10-2), University of León (ULE 2001-08B), and Ministerio de Ciencia y Tecnología (BIO2005-02723 and BIO2008-00519).


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2013

Authors and Affiliations

  • Michal Letek
    • 1
  • María Fiuza
    • 1
  • Almudena F. Villadangos
    • 1
  • Luís M. Mateos
    • 1
  • José A. Gil
    • 2
  1. 1.Departamento de Biología Molecular, Área de Microbiología, Facultad de Biología, Instituto de Biología Molecular, Genómica y Proteómica (INBIOMIC)Universidad de LeónLeónSpain
  2. 2.Molecular Biology Department, Faculty of BiologyUniversity of LeonLeónSpain

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