Letter | Published:

Function of peptide antibiotics in producer organisms

Naturevolume 254pages7982 (1975) | Download Citation

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Abstract

PEPTIDE antibiotics in the producer organisms have been ascribed a wide variety of roles, ranging from evolutionary relics and waste products to elevated control in metabolism (see refs 1 and 2). No hypothesis, however, has yet found general acceptance. A frequent suggestion is that these antibiotics may have an important regulatory function during the sporulation process of the producer cells3,4. We have recently reported, however, the existence of a bacitracin-negative mutant of Bacillus licheniformis which sporulates normally5, thus ruling out a direct role for the peptide antibiotic in the formation of spores in this species. To find out whether this mutant is a true non-producer of bacitracin or not, we have compared the bacitracin synthetase complex in this mutant with that of the bacitracin-producing mother strain B. licheniformis AL. This suggests that the mutant is not able to produce any bacitracin as a result of a defective enzyme complex.

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  1. Department of Research and Development, A/S Apothekernes Laboratorium for Special praeparater, Oslo, Norway

    • HANS I. HAAVIK
    •  & ØYSTEIN FROYSHOV

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https://doi.org/10.1038/254079a0

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