Effect of copper on membrane lipids and on methane monooxygenase activity of Methylococcus capsulatus (Bath)
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The effect of copper supplementation on growth, methane monooxygenase activity and lipid composition of Methylococcus capsulatus (Bath) was studied. Copper increased biomass yield, methane monooxygenase activity and phospholipid content from 7.7 to 10.2% of dry weight. Cells from copper-deficient and copper supplemented cultures contained the same major fatty acids but in the presence of copper only the contents of C16:0 and the three C16:1 isomers were increased while the contents of C14:0 and cyclic C17:0 remained unchanged. Phosphatidylethanolamine (PE), phosphatidylcholine (PC), phosphatidylglycerol and cardiolipin were analysed amongst the polar lipids. PE was the main component (about 60 mol-%) but the most notable copper-induced increment occurred in the proportion of PC, from about 10 to 16 mol-%. Concomitantly with this increment the fatty acids of PC were changed so that the mol-% of C16: 1 isomers were increased at the expense of other acids. Similar trends were seen also in the fatty acid compositions of other polar lipid fractions. It is therefore concluded that phosphatidylcholine would be one of the key factors when the role of membranous lipids in methane monooxygenase activity is to be considered.
Key wordsMethylococcus capsulatus methane monooxygenase Membrane lipids effect of copper
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