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Isolation and characterization of a prokaryotic cell organelle from the anammox bacterium Kuenenia stuttgartiensis
Neumann, S.; Wessels, H.J.C.T.; Rijpstra, W.I.C.; Sinninghe Damsté, J.S.; Kartal, B.; Jetten, M.S.M.; van Niftrik, L. (2014). Isolation and characterization of a prokaryotic cell organelle from the anammox bacterium Kuenenia stuttgartiensis. Mol. Microbiol. 94(4): 794-802. dx.doi.org/10.1111/mmi.12816
In: Molecular Microbiology. Blackwell Scientific: Oxford. ISSN 0950-382X, more
Peer reviewed article  

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  • Neumann, S.
  • Wessels, H.J.C.T.
  • Rijpstra, W.I.C., more
  • Sinninghe Damsté, J.S., more
  • Kartal, B., more
  • Jetten, M.S.M.
  • van Niftrik, L.

Abstract
    Anaerobic ammonium oxidizing (anammox) bacteria oxidize ammonium with nitrite to nitrogen gas in the absence of oxygen. These microorganisms form a significant sink for fixed nitrogen in the oceans and the anammox process is applied as a cost-effective and environment-friendly nitrogen removal system from wastewater. Anammox bacteria have a compartmentalized cell plan that consists of three separate compartments. Here we report the fractionation of the anammox bacterium Kuenenia stuttgartiensis in order to isolate and analyze the innermost cell compartment called the anammoxosome. The subcellular fractions were microscopically characterized and all membranes in the anammox cell were shown to contain ladderane lipids which are unique for anammox bacteria. Proteome analyses and activity assays with the isolated anammoxosomes showed that these organelles harbor the energy metabolism in anammox cells. Together the experimental data provide the first thorough characterization of a respiratory cell organelle from a bacterium and demonstrate the essential role of the anammoxosome in the production of a major portion of the nitrogen gas in our atmosphere.

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