The ndhF gene of the unicellular marine cyanobacterium Synechococcus sp. strain PCC 7002 was cloned and characterized. NdhF is a subunit of the type 1, multisubunit NADH:plastoquinone oxidoreductase (NADH dehydrogenase). The nucleotide sequence of the gene predicts an extremely hydrophobic protein of 664 amino acids with a calculated mass of 72.9 kDa. The ndhF gene was shown to be single copy and transcribed into a monocistronic mRNA of 2,300 nucleotides. An ndhF null mutation was successfully constructed by interposon mutagenesis, demonstrating that NdhF is not required for cell viability under photoautotrophic growth conditions. The mutant strain exhibited a negligible rate of oxygen uptake in the dark, but its photosynthetic properties (oxygen evolution, chlorophyll/P700 ratio, and chlorophyll/P680 ratio) were generally similar to those of the wild type. Although the ndhF mutant strain grew as rapidly as the wild-type strain at high light intensity, the mutant grew more slowly than the wild type at lower light intensities and did not grow at all under photoheterotrophic conditions. The roles of the NADH:plastoquinone oxidoreductase in photosynthetic and respiratory electron transport are discussed.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Molecular Biology