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J Bacteriol. 1993 Jun; 175(11): 3372–3379.
PMCID: PMC204734

Reductive pentose phosphate-independent CO2 fixation in Rhodobacter sphaeroides and evidence that ribulose bisphosphate carboxylase/oxygenase activity serves to maintain the redox balance of the cell.


Whole-cell CO2 fixation and ribulose 1,5-bisphosphate carboxylase/oxygenase (RubisCO) activity were determined in Rhodobacter sphaeroides wild-type and mutant strains. There is no obvious difference in the levels of whole-cell CO2 fixation for the wild type, a form I RubisCO deletion mutant, and a form II RubisCO deletion mutant. No ribulose 1,5-bisphosphate-dependent CO2 fixation was detected in a form I-form II RubisCO double-deletion mutant (strain 16) or strain 16PHC, a derivative from strain 16 which was selected for the ability to grow photoheterotrophically with CO2 as an electron acceptor. However, significant levels of whole-cell CO2 fixation were detected in both strains 16 and 16PHC. Strain 16PHC exhibited CO2 fixation rates significantly higher than those of strain 16; the rates found for strain 16PHC were 30% of the level found in photoheterotrophically grown wild-type strain HR containing both form I and form II RubisCO and 10% of the level of the wild-type strain grown photolithoautotrophically. Strain 16PHC could not grow photolithoautotrophically in a CO2-H2 atmosphere; however, CO2 fixation catalyzed by photoheterotrophically grown strain 16PHC was repressed by addition of the alternate electron acceptor dimethyl sulfoxide. Dimethyl sulfoxide addition also influenced RubisCO activity under photolithoautotrophic conditions; 40 to 70% of the RubisCO activity was reduced without significantly influencing growth. Strain 16PHC and strain 16 contain nearly equivalent but low levels of pyruvate carboxylase, indicating that CO2 fixation enzymes other than pyruvate carboxylase contribute to the ability of strain 16PHC to grow with CO2 as an electron acceptor.

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Selected References

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