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J Bacteriol. 1966 Aug;92(2):342-5.

Isolation and Identification of Canthaxanthin from Micrococcus roseus.

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Department of Biology, University of Dayton, Dayton, Ohio.


Cooney, J. J. (University of Dayton, Dayton, Ohio), H. W. Marks, Jr., and Anne M. Smith. Isolation and identification of canthaxanthin from Micrococcus roseus. J. Bacteriol. 92:342-345. 1966.-The principal colored carotenoid of Micrococcus roseus was purified by solvent partitioning followed by column and thin-layer chromatography. Absorption spectra, partition coefficients, and infrared spectra suggested that the pigment was a diketo derivative of beta-carotene. The pigment was subjected to reduction, and the reduced pigment was subsequently dehydrated. Spectral data and partition coefficients of these derivatives indicated that the original pigment was canthaxanthin (4',4'-diketo-beta-carotene). The pigment was an all-trans isomer; it does not exist as an ester in M. roseus. Canthaxanthin has not previously been identified as a bacterial pigment.


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