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Res Microbiol. 1995 Feb;146(2):113-20.

Convergent evolution of amino acid usage in archaebacterial and eubacterial lineages adapted to high salt.

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Fakultät für Biologie, Universität Konstanz, Germany.


Chemical composition and physical properties of the total protein of Haloferax mediterranei, a halophilic archaebacterium requiring high salt concentration for growth, of Halomonas elongata, a halotolerant eubacterium able to grow at any concentration of salt, and of Escherichia coli B, a eubacterium related to H. elongata, unable to grow at high salt concentration, were compared using robust standard biochemical methods. The distribution of amino acid abundancies in the bulk protein from H. elongata was found to be intermediate between that from H. mediterranei and that from E. coli. The two high-salt-adapted organisms displayed an enrichment in aspartic acid and glutamic acid together with an impoverishment in lysine as compared to E. coli. This signature in amino acid usage is reflected in the charge distribution of proteins, as revealed by anion exchange chromatography of crude cell extracts. Since H. elongata diverged from H. mediterranei more than three billion years ago, the resemblance of their amino acid usages can be interpreted as a convergent imprint of their common habitats onto the chemical constitution of their proteins.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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