Journal Article

Keeping in Touch with PII: PII-Interacting Proteins in Unicellular Cyanobacteria

Takashi Osanai and Kan Tanaka

in Plant and Cell Physiology

Published on behalf of Japanese Society of Plant Physiologists

Volume 48, issue 7, pages 908-914
Published in print July 2007 | ISSN: 0032-0781
Published online July 2007 | e-ISSN: 1471-9053 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/pcp/pcm072
Keeping in Touch with PII: PII-Interacting Proteins in Unicellular Cyanobacteria

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PII protein is conserved among bacteria, archaea and plants, and is thought to function as a carbon/nitrogen balance sensor in these organisms. Recently, several proteins that specifically interact with PII, including a PII phosphatase (PphA), an amino acid biosynthetic enzyme (NAGK), a probable membrane channel (PamA) and a small protein (PipX) that also interacts with the nitrogen transcription factor NtcA, have been identified in the unicellular cyanobacteria Synechococcus sp. PCC 7942 and Synechocystis sp. PCC 6803. These findings and subsequent analyses have suggested that PII protein controls carbon and nitrogen metabolism at the gene expression level as well as at the protein activity level. In this review, the functions of PII are envisaged based on functional analyses of the PII-interacting proteins identified in cyanobacteria.

Keywords: Cyanobacteria; glnB; NAGK; PamA; PII; PipX.

Journal Article.  3718 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Biochemistry ; Molecular and Cell Biology ; Plant Sciences and Forestry

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