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Biosynthesis of teichoic acids in Streptococcus pneumoniae and closely related species: lessons from genomes

Lookup NU author(s): Professor Waldemar Vollmer


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The cell wall of Streptococcus pneumoniae contains an unusually complex wall teichoic acid (WTA), which has identical repeating units as the membrane-anchored lipoteichoic acid (LTA). Both polymers share a common cytoplasmic pathway of precursor synthesis, but several TA enzymes have remained elusive. Bioinformatic analysis of the genome of various pneumococcal strains, including choline-independent mutant strains, has allowed us to identify the missing TA genes. We present here the deduced complete pathways of WTA and LTA synthesis in S. pneumoniae and point to the variations occurring in different pneumococcal strains and in closely related species such as Streptococcus oralis and Streptococcus mitis.

Publication metadata

Author(s): Denapaite D, Bruckner R, Hakenbeck R, Vollmer W

Publication type: Article

Publication status: Published

Journal: Microbial Drug Resistance

Year: 2012

Volume: 18

Issue: 3

Pages: 344-358

Print publication date: 20/03/2012

ISSN (print): 1076-6294

ISSN (electronic): 1931-8448

Publisher: Mary Ann Liebert, Inc.


DOI: 10.1089/mdr.2012.0026


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Funder referenceFunder name
Biotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council (BBSRC)
HA 1011/13-1Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft (DFG)