Description: In view of the increased energy cost of life at extremely alkaline pH, the extraordinary qualitative and quantitative array of respiratory chain components of alkalophilic bacteria, and the normal growth yields and O/sub 2/ consumption rates of such organisms, it has been proposed that the obligately alkalophilic bacteria possess structural/functional properties of the respiratory chain such that particularly efficient energy conservation is facilitated. The respiratory chain components of Bacillus alcalophilus have been studied in comparison with its non-alkalophilic mutant derivative; a similar study of Bacillus firmus RAB and non-alkalophilic RABN is now partially completed. The alkalophiles contain high quantities of many distinct redox carriers as compared to their derivative and other non-alkalophiles. Determinations of H/sup +/7O ratios are now in progress. A system for study of the regulation of cytochrome expression, as a function of pH, has been developed. Failure of obligate alkalophiles to grow at pH 7.0 now appears to relate to the low membrane potentials produced by respiration at that pH, rather than a failure of pH homeostasis. Since alkalophilic cells are found to be viable at pH 7.0, incubations can be conducted for study of functional and regulatory aspects of respiration.
Date: January 1, 1982
Creator: Krulwich, T.A.
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