Intact chlorosomes of Chlorobium tepidum were embedded in amorphous ice layers and examined by cryo-electron microscopy to study the long-range organization of bacteriochlorophyll (BChl) layers. End-on views reveal that chlorosomes are composed of several multi-layer tubules of variable diameter (20-30 nm) with some locally undulating non-tubular lamellae in between. The multi-layered tubular structures are more regular and larger in a C. tepidum mutant that only synthesizes [8-ethyl, 12-methyl]-BChl d. Our data show that wild-type C. tepidum chlorosomes do not have a highly regular, long-range BChl c layer organization and that they contain several multi-layered tubules rather than single-layer tubules or exclusively undulating lamellae as previously proposed.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Structural Biology
- Molecular Biology
- Cell Biology