Paracrystalline Layers of Methanospirillum hungatei GP1

  • Gordon Southam
  • Terry J. Beveridge
  • G. Dennis Sprott
Part of the NATO ASI Series book series (NSSA, volume 252)


Methanospirillum hungatei GP1 (Patel et al., 1976) is a methanogenic archaeobacterium which possesses an unusual envelope architecture unique among bacteria because of the paracrystalline nature of its three envelope components (Zeikus and Bowen, 1975; Shaw et al., 1985; Beveridge et al., 1991; Southam and Beveridge, 1992b). The major envelope feature of M. hungatei is the hollow tubular sheath which surrounds, but does not completely enclose individual cells nor chains of two or more cells. The second envelope component, the multilayered end plug (spacer plug; Beveridge et al., 1987) acts in concert with the sheath to encase individual cells. Within this sheath/end plug framework, cells are bound by a proteinaceous cell wall which is the third envelope component (Southam and Beveridge, 1992b). In this study we provide evidence for the existence of a fourth periodic envelope structure located in the cell spacer region.


Filament Pole Phenol Soluble Envelope Component Sheath Structure Filament Terminus 
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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 1993

Authors and Affiliations

  • Gordon Southam
    • 1
  • Terry J. Beveridge
    • 1
  • G. Dennis Sprott
    • 2
  1. 1.Department of Microbiology, College of Biological ScienceUniversity of GuelphGuelphCanada
  2. 2.Institute of Biological SciencesNational Research Council of CanadaOttawaCanada

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