Indexed on: 03 Apr '01Published on: 03 Apr '01Published in: Applied and environmental microbiology
The metabolism of benzoate, cyclohex-1-ene carboxylate, and cyclohexane carboxylate by "Syntrophus aciditrophicus" in cocultures with hydrogen-using microorganisms was studied. Cyclohexane carboxylate, cyclohex-1-ene carboxylate, pimelate, and glutarate (or their coenzyme A [CoA] derivatives) transiently accumulated during growth with benzoate. Identification was based on comparison of retention times and mass spectra of trimethylsilyl derivatives to the retention times and mass spectra of authentic chemical standards. (13)C nuclear magnetic resonance spectroscopy confirmed that cyclohexane carboxylate and cyclohex-1-ene carboxylate were produced from [ring-(13)C(6)]benzoate. None of the metabolites mentioned above was detected in non-substrate-amended or heat-killed controls. Cyclohexane carboxylic acid accumulated to a concentration of 260 microM, accounting for about 18% of the initial benzoate added. This compound was not detected in culture extracts of Rhodopseudomonas palustris grown phototrophically or Thauera aromatica grown under nitrate-reducing conditions. Cocultures of "S. aciditrophicus" and Methanospirillum hungatei readily metabolized cyclohexane carboxylate and cyclohex-1-ene carboxylate at a rate slightly faster than the rate of benzoate metabolism. In addition to cyclohexane carboxylate, pimelate, and glutarate, 2-hydroxycyclohexane carboxylate was detected in trace amounts in cocultures grown with cyclohex-1-ene carboxylate. Cyclohex-1-ene carboxylate, pimelate, and glutarate were detected in cocultures grown with cyclohexane carboxylate at levels similar to those found in benzoate-grown cocultures. Cell extracts of "S. aciditrophicus" grown in a coculture with Desulfovibrio sp. strain G11 with benzoate or in a pure culture with crotonate contained the following enzyme activities: an ATP-dependent benzoyl-CoA ligase, cyclohex-1-ene carboxyl-CoA hydratase, and 2-hydroxycyclohexane carboxyl-CoA dehydrogenase, as well as pimelyl-CoA dehydrogenase, glutaryl-CoA dehydrogenase, and the enzymes required for conversion of crotonyl-CoA to acetate. 2-Ketocyclohexane carboxyl-CoA hydrolase activity was detected in cell extracts of "S. aciditrophicus"-Desulfovibrio sp. strain G11 benzoate-grown cocultures but not in crotonate-grown pure cultures of "S. aciditrophicus". These results are consistent with the hypothesis that ring reduction during syntrophic benzoate metabolism involves a four- or six-electron reduction step and that once cyclohex-1-ene carboxyl-CoA is made, it is metabolized in a manner similar to that in R. palustris.