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J Mol Microbiol Biotechnol. 2007;12(1-2):131-8.

Nitrogen metabolism and nitrogen control in corynebacteria: variations of a common theme.

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Lehrstuhl für Mikrobiologie, Friedrich-Alexander-Universität Erlangen-Nurnberg, Erlangen, Germany.


The published genome sequences of Corynebacterium diphtheriae, Corynebacterium efficiens, Corynebacterium glutamicum and Corynebacterium jeikeium were screened for genes encoding central components of nitrogen source uptake, nitrogen assimilation and nitrogen control systems. Interestingly, the soil-living species C. efficiens and C. glutamicum exhibit a broader spectrum of genes for nitrogen transport and metabolism than the pathogenic species C. diphtheriae and C. jeikeium. The latter are characterized by gene decay and loss of functions like urea metabolism and nitrogen-dependent transcription control. The global regulator of nitrogen regulation AmtR and its DNA-binding motif are conserved in C. diphtheriae, C. efficiens and C. glutamicum, while in C. jeikeium, an AmtR-encoding gene as well as putative AmtR-binding motifs are missing.

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