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Single-organelle quantification reveals stoichiometric and structural variability of carboxysomes dependent on the environment

Lookup NU author(s): Dr Adam WollmanORCiD

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This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License (CC BY 4.0).


Abstract

© 2019 The author. The carboxysome is a complex, proteinaceous organelle that plays essential roles in carbon assimilation in cyanobacteria and chemoautotrophs. It comprises hundreds of protein homologs that self-assemble in space to form an icosahedral structure. Despite its significance in enhancing CO2 fixation and potentials in bioengineering applications, the formation of carboxysomes and their structural composition, stoichiometry, and adaptation to cope with environmental changes remain unclear. Here we use live-cell single-molecule fluorescence microscopy, coupled with confocal and electron microscopy, to decipher the absolute protein stoichiometry and organizational variability of single β-carboxysomes in the model cyanobacterium Synechococcus elongatus PCC7942. We determine the physiological abundance of individual building blocks within the icosahedral carboxysome. We further find that the protein stoichiometry, diameter, localization, and mobility patterns of carboxysomes in cells depend sensitively on the microenvironmental levels of CO2 and light intensity during cell growth, revealing cellular strategies of dynamic regulation. These findings, also applicable to other bacterial microcompartments and macromolecular self-assembling systems, advance our knowledge of the principles that mediate carboxysome formation and structural modulation. It will empower rational design and construction of entire functional metabolic factories in heterologous organisms, for example crop plants, to boost photosynthesis and agricultural productivity.


Publication metadata

Author(s): Sun Y, Wollman AJM, Huang F, Leake MC, Liu L-N

Publication type: Article

Publication status: Published

Journal: Plant Cell

Year: 2019

Volume: 31

Issue: 7

Pages: 1648-1664

Online publication date: 02/05/2019

Acceptance date: 02/05/2019

Date deposited: 10/02/2020

ISSN (print): 1040-4651

ISSN (electronic): 1532-298X

Publisher: American Society of Plant Biologists

URL: https://doi.org/10.1105/tpc.18.00787

DOI: 10.1105/tpc.18.00787

PubMed id: 31048338


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Funding

Funder referenceFunder name
204829
BB/M024202/1
ECF-2016-778
BB/N006453/1
BB/R003890/1
MR/K01580X/1
IE131399
RGF\EA\180233
UF120411
RGF\EA\181061
URF\R\180030

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