Caister Academic Press

Electron Transport and Respiration in Mycobacteria

Bavesh D. Kana, Edith E. Machowski, Norman Schechter, Jiah-Shin Teh, Harvey Rubin and Valerie Mizrahi
from: Mycobacterium: Genomics and Molecular Biology (Edited by: Tanya Parish and Amanda Brown). Caister Academic Press, U.K. (2009)


Bacteria have evolved a modular respiratory system that enables them to optimize energy production in environments that are variable and may be hostile. By adjusting the composition of the system to suit the specific conditions encountered, the organism is able to thrive in a particular environment. The flexibility conferred by a modular respiratory system is critical to the survival of many bacterial pathogens, including Mycobacterium tuberculosis. In this chapter, we firstly review the composition of the respiratory systems of sequenced mycobacterial species as deduced from a comparative analysis of their respiratory gene complements, and from the function of specific system components, as revealed by biochemical and physiological studies. We then review the transcriptional changes of respiratory system components of M. tuberculosis observed in various models of growth and persistence in vitro and in vivo, identify the common themes that have emerged from these studies and relate them to the physiology of this pathogen during infection. These findings are framed in the context of exciting new developments in tuberculosis drug discovery, which are predicated on targeting respiration and electron transport through inhibition of type II NADH dehydrogenase, ATP synthase, and menaquinone biosynthetic enzymes read more ...
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