Caister Academic Press

Glycogen: a Dynamic Cellular Sink and Reservoir for Carbon

Yvonne Zilliges
from: The Cell Biology of Cyanobacteria (Edited by: Enrique Flores and Antonia Herrero). Caister Academic Press, U.K. (2014)


All microorganisms accumulate carbon and energy reserves to cope with starvation conditions temporally present in the environment. In cyanobacteria, glycogen biosynthesis is the main strategy for metabolic sink and storage of photosynthetically fixed carbon. Glycogen biosynthesis is therefore tightly coupled to light and dark reactions of photosynthesis. Inversely, the process of glycogen degradation provides carbon and energy for adverse cellular processes.

This review summarizes the current knowledge of the chemical properties and structure of glycogen and starch-like reserves in cyanobacteria, the different enzymology and regulation of glycogen biosynthesis and degradation, and the function of glycogen metabolism in cyanobacteria. A special focus is drawn on its roles in photosynthetic efficiency, during the process of nitrogen chlorosis and for the steady-state of anabolic and catabolic reactions, especially under unbalanced growth conditions read more ...

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