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Adv Microb Physiol. 2002;46:257-318.

Biochemistry, regulation and genomics of haem biosynthesis in prokaryotes.

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Department of Biochemistry, State University of New York at Buffalo, Buffalo, NY 14214, USA.


Haems are involved in many cellular processes in prokaryotes and eukaryotes. The biosynthetic pathway leading to haem formation is, with few exceptions, well-conserved, and is controlled in accordance with cellular function. Here, we review the biosynthesis of haem and its regulation in prokaryotes. In addition, we focus on a modification of haem for cytochrome c biogenesis, a complex process that entails both transport between cellular compartments and a specific thioether linkage between the haem moiety and the apoprotein. Finally, a whole genome analysis from 63 prokaryotes indicates intriguing exceptions to the universality of the haem biosynthetic pathway and helps define new frontiers for future study.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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