Photosystem I pp 205-222 | Cite as

Genetic Manipulation of Quinone Biosynthesis in Cyanobacteria

  • Yumiko Sakuragi
  • Donald A. Bryant
Part of the Advances in Photosynthesis and Respiration book series (AIPH, volume 24)


Isoprenoid quinones (phylloquinone, plastoquinone) and their derivatives (α-, β-, and γ-tocopherol) play crucial roles in oxygenic photosynthesis. Phylloquinone (vitamin K1) and plastoquinone-9 are cofactors of Photosystem I (PS I) and Photosystem II (PS II) complexes, respectively, and mediate electron transfer within and between complexes, while the roles of tocopherols are yet to be fully identified. Traditionally, the biosynthetic pathways of these quinones have been studied by direct enzymatic assays or, since the late 1960s, by using isotopic tracer compounds. Recent progress in the genome sequencing of 14 cyanobacteria has provided a newtool for the identification of genes encoding enzymes of the biosynthetic pathways of these quinones; comparative genomics, in combination with reverse genetics, has recently provided a wealth of new information. With the exception of Gloeobacter violaceus, phylloquinone biosynthesis in cyanobacteria has been shown to be very similar to menaquinone biosynthesis in Escherichia coli. Metabolic engineering of the pathway resulted in the incorporation of a variety of quinone species of either biotic or abiotic origin into the A1 site of Photosystem I, and the resulting strains are important tools for the investigation of electron transfer around the A1 quinone. Plastoquinone-9 biosynthesis in cyanobacteria differs from that in higher plants. Comparative genome analysis has revealed the presence of conserved open reading frames, which encode proteins that share sequence similarity with those required for ubiquinone biosynthesis in E. coli. Possible applications of metabolic engineering of the plastoquinone-9 and α-tocopherol biosynthetic pathways for studies of oxygenic photosynthesis are also discussed.


Oxygenic Photosynthesis Nostoc Punctiforme Gene Bank Accession Number Chlorobium Tepidum Oxygenic Phototroph 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


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Copyright information

© Springer 2006

Authors and Affiliations

  • Yumiko Sakuragi
    • 1
  • Donald A. Bryant
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Biochemistry and Molecular BiologyThe Pennsylvania State UniversityUniversity ParkUSA

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