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Assimilation of nitrogen 13 labeled ammonium ion by azospirillum brasilense grown under nitrogen limitation and excess



Assimilation of nitrogen 13 labeled ammonium ion by azospirillum brasilense grown under nitrogen limitation and excess



Journal of Bacteriology 169(9): 4211-4214



The specific activities of glutamine synthetase (GS) and glutamate synthase (GOGAT) were 4.2- and 2.2-fold higher, respectively, in cells of Azospirillum brasilense grown with N2 than with 43 mM NH4+ as the source of nitrogen. Conversely, the specific activity of glutamate dehydrogenase (GDH) was 2.7-fold higher in 43 mM NH4+ grown cells than in N2-grown cells. These results indicate that NH4+ could be assimilated and that glutamate could be formed by either the GS-GOGAT or GDH pathway or both, depending on the cellular concentration of NH4+. The routes of in vivo synthesis of glutamate were identified by using 13N as a metabolic tracer. The products of assimilation of 13NH4+ were, in order of decreasing radioactivity, glutamine, glutamate, and alanine. The formation of [13N]glutamine and [13N]glutamate by NH4+-grown cells was inhibited in the additional presence of methionine sulfoximine (an inhibitor of GS) and diazooxonorleucine (an inhibitor of GOGAT). Incorporation of 13N into glutamine, glutamate, and alanine decreased in parallel in the presence of carrier NH4+. These results imply that the GS-GOGAT pathway is the primary route of NH4+ assimilation by A. brasilense grown with excess or limiting nitrogen and that GDH has, at best, a minor role in the synthesis of glutamate.

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Accession: 004789433

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