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Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 1998 Sep 1;95(18):11008-13.

A response regulator of cyanobacteria integrates diverse environmental signals and is critical for survival under extreme conditions.

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1
Department of Plant Biology, The Carnegie Institution of Washington, 260 Panama Street, Stanford, CA 94305, USA.

Abstract

Microorganisms must sense their environment and rapidly tune their metabolism to ambient conditions to efficiently use available resources. We have identified a gene encoding a response regulator, NblR, that complements a cyanobacterial mutant unable to degrade its light-harvesting complex (phycobilisome), in response to nutrient deprivation. Cells of the nblR mutant (i) have more phycobilisomes than wild-type cells during nutrient-replete growth, (ii) do not degrade phycobilisomes during sulfur, nitrogen, or phosphorus limitation, (iii) cannot properly modulate the phycobilisome level during exposure to high light, and (iv) die rapidly when starved for either sulfur or nitrogen, or when exposed to high light. Apart from regulation of phycobilisome degradation, NblR modulates additional functions critical for cell survival during nutrient-limited and high-light conditions. NblR does not appear to be involved in acclimation responses that occur only during a specific nutrient limitation. In contrast, it controls at least some of the general acclimation responses; those that occur during any of a number of different stress conditions. NblR plays a pivotal role in integrating different environmental signals that link the metabolism of the cell to light harvesting capabilities and the activities of the photosynthetic apparatus; this modulation is critical for cell survival.

PMID:
9724820
PMCID:
PMC28011
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article
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