Mycolic acid metabolic filiation and location in Mycobacterium aurum and Mycobacterium phlei
Article first published online: 3 MAR 2005
European Journal of Biochemistry
Volume 181, Issue 2, pages 459–466, May 1989
How to Cite
LACAVE, C., LANEELLE, M.-A., DAFFE, M., MONTROZIER, H. and LANEELLE, G. (1989), Mycolic acid metabolic filiation and location in Mycobacterium aurum and Mycobacterium phlei. European Journal of Biochemistry, 181: 459–466. doi: 10.1111/j.1432-1033.1989.tb14747.x
- Issue published online: 3 MAR 2005
- Article first published online: 3 MAR 2005
- (Received September 9/December 1, 1988) – EJB 88 1067
Synchronous cultures of Mycobacterium aurum were used to prove a close relationship between cellular division and active synthesis of mycolic acids (characteristic long-chain 3-hydroxyacids, branched at position 2), confirming previous proposals.
Mycolic acid biosynthesis was studied in two species (Mycobacterium phlei and M. aurum) each producing three types of mycolic acids: di-unsatured mycolates, oxomycolates and wax-ester mycolates (ester of dicarboxymycolic acid and 2-icosanol or 2-octadecanol). It was shown that unsaturated mycolates and oxomycolic acids were not directly related, whereas a metabolic filiation was confirmed between oxomycolate and wax ester mycolate: the latter derived, whereas a metabolic filiation was confirmed between oxomycolate and wax ester mycolate: the latter derived from the former by a Baeyer-Villiger oxidation step, as has been proposed on the basis of structural considerations.
By observing the labelling of the different mycolate pools in the cell, i.e. the organic-solvent-extractable fraction (essentially containing esters of trehalose and of glycerol) and the cell residue (assumed to be the cell-wall polymers), it was clear that oxomycolates and unsaturated mycolates appeared first in the extractable lipids, then in the wall-linked mycolates while wax-ester mycolates appeared first as wall-linked derivatives. Thus, it is proposed that mycolates could follow separate routes involving differently located enzymes to reach their complex forms either in extractable lipids or in the wall-linked arabino-galactan.