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Mol Microbiol. 2005 Jun;56(6):1408-15.

Impact of the bacterial type I cytochrome c maturation system on different biological processes.

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Department of Microbiology and Immunology, Northwestern University Medical School, Chicago, IL 60611, USA.


In the alpha-, beta- and gamma-Proteobacteria, the so-called cytochrome c maturation (Ccm) system is known to promote the covalent attachment of the haem to periplasmic apocytochrome c. However, in species of Pseudomonas, Rhizobium, Paracoccus and Legionella, mutations in ccm genes result in phenotypes that cannot be readily explained by the simple loss of a c-type cytochrome. These phenotypes include loss of siderophore production and utilization, reduced abilities to grow in low-iron conditions and in mammalian and protozoan host cells, and alterations in copper sensitivity and manganese oxidation. These various data suggest that Ccm proteins may perform one or more functions in addition to Ccm, which are critical for bacterial physiology and growth. Novel hypotheses that should be explored include the utilization of Ccm-associated haem for processes besides attachment to apocytochrome c, the export of a non-haem compound through the Ccm system, and the negative effects of protoporphyrin IX accumulation.

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