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Arch Microbiol. 2003 Jul;180(1):33-44. Epub 2003 May 10.

Identification and functional analysis of six mycolyltransferase genes of Corynebacterium glutamicum ATCC 13032: the genes cop1, cmt1, and cmt2 can replace each other in the synthesis of trehalose dicorynomycolate, a component of the mycolic acid layer of the cell envelope.

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Lehrstuhl für Genetik, Universität Bielefeld, Fakultät für Biologie, Postfach 100131, 33501, Bielefeld, Germany.


By data mining in the sequence of the Corynebacterium glutamicum ATCC 13032 genome, six putative mycolyltransferase genes were identified that code for proteins with similarity to the N-terminal domain of the mycolic acid transferase PS1 of the related C. glutamicum strain ATCC 17965. The genes identified were designated cop1, cmt1, cmt2, cmt3, cmt4, and cmt5 ( cmt from corynebacterium mycolyl transferases). cop1 encodes a protein of 657 amino acids, which is larger than the proteins encoded by the cmt genes with 365, 341, 483, 483, and 411 amino acids. Using bioinformatics tools, it was shown that all six gene products are equipped with signal peptides and esterase domains. Proteome analyses of the cell envelope of C. glutamicum ATCC 13032 resulted in identification of the proteins Cop1, Cmt1, Cmt2, and Cmt4. All six mycolyltransferase genes were used for mutational analysis. cmt4 could not be mutated and is considered to be essential. cop1 was found to play an additional role in cell shape formation. A triple mutant carrying mutations in cop1, cmt1, and cmt2 aggregated when cultivated in MM1 liquid medium. This mutant was also no longer able to synthesize trehalose di coryno mycolate (TDCM). Since single and double mutants of the genes cop1, cmt1, and cmt2 could form TDCM, it is concluded that the three genes, cop1, cmt1, and cmt2, are involved in TDCM biosynthesis. The presence of the putative esterase domain makes it highly possible that cop1, cmt1, and cmt2 encode enzymes synthesizing TDCM from trehalose monocorynomycolate.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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