How Do Cyanobacteria Perceive and Adjust to Their Environment?
Cyanobacteria have been recognized in almost all of the ecosystems that have been examined heretofore, and they probably represent the most highly diverse group of prokaryotes. They are quite remarkable in their abilities to adapt to their environment, whether the changes concern nutrient availability, temperature, intensity or spectral quality of the light. The environmental parameters have to be sensed before cells can answer and adapt to the various changes. A series of mechanisms are involved in the sensing and transduction of signals. Both the mechanisms and the connections that may exist between them have recently started to be elucidated. A few examples are described and summarized which have been studied at a molecular level in cyanobacteria. Particular emphasis is given to photoregulation of gene expression since light plays a major role in the metabolism of these photoautotrophic organisms.
KeywordsFilamentous Cyanobacterium psbA Gene Growth Irradiance Anabaena Variabilis Heterocyst Differentiation
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