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J Bacteriol. 1994 May;176(9):2543-50.

Delta mu Na+ drives the synthesis of ATP via an delta mu Na(+)-translocating F1F0-ATP synthase in membrane vesicles of the archaeon Methanosarcina mazei Gö1.

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  • 1Institut für Mikrobiologie, Georg-August-Universität, Göttingen, Germany.


Methanosarcina mazei Gö1 couples the methyl transfer from methyl-tetrahydromethanopterin to 2-mercaptoethanesulfonate (coenzyme M) with the generation of an electrochemical sodium ion gradient (delta mu Na+) and the reduction of the heterodisulfide of coenzyme M and 7-mercaptoheptanoylthreoninephosphate with the generation of an electrochemical proton gradient (delta muH+). Experiments with washed inverted vesicles were performed to investigate whether both ion gradients are used directly for the synthesis of ATP. delta mu Na+ and delta mu H+ were both able to drive the synthesis of ATP in the vesicular system. ATP synthesis driven by heterodisulfide reduction (delta mu H+) or an artificial delta pH was inhibited by the protonophore SF6847 but not by the sodium ionophore ETH157, whereas ETH157 but not SF6847 inhibited ATP synthesis driven by a chemical sodium ion gradient (delta pNa) as well as the methyl transfer reaction (delta mu Na+). Inhibition of the Na+/H+ antiporter led to a stimulation of ATP synthesis driven by the methyl transfer reaction (delta mu Na+), as well as by delta pNa. These experiments indicate that delta mu Na+ and delta mu H+ drive the synthesis of ATP via an Na(+)- and an H(+)-translocating ATP synthase, respectively. Inhibitor studies were performed to elucidate the nature of the ATP synthase(s) involved. delta pH-driven ATP synthesis was specifically inhibited by bafilomycin A1, whereas delta pNa-driven ATP synthesis was exclusively inhibited by 7-chloro-4-nitro-2-oxa-1,3-diazole, azide, and venturicidin. These results are evidence for the presence of an F(1)F(0)-ATP synthase in addition to the A(1)A(0)-ATP synthase in membranes of M. Mazei Gö1 and suggest that the F(1)F(0)-type enzyme is an Na+-translocating ATP synthase, whereas the A(1)A(0)-ATP synthase uses H+ as the coupling ion.

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