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Title: Shewanella oneidensis MR-1 Nanowires are Outer Membrane and Periplasmic Extensions of the Extracellular Electron Transport Components

Bacterial nanowires offer an extracellular electron transport (EET) pathway for linking the respiratory chain of bacteria to external surfaces, including oxidized metals in the environment and engineered electrodes in renewable energy devices. Despite the global, environmental, and technological consequences of this biotic-abiotic interaction, the composition, physiological relevance, and electron transport mechanisms of bacterial nanowires remain unclear. We report the first in vivo observations of the formation and respiratory impact of nanowires in the model metal-reducing microbe Shewanella neidensis MR-1. Using live fluorescence measurements, immunolabeling, and quantitative gene expression analysis, we report that S. oneidensis MR-1 nanowires are extensions of the outer membrane and periplasm that include the multiheme cytochromes responsible for EET, rather than pilin-based structures, as previously thought. These bacterial nanowires were also associated with outer membrane vesicles and vesicle chains, structures ubiquitous in gram-negative bacteria. Redoxfunctionalized membrane and vesicular extensions may represent a general microbial strategy for electron transport and energy distribution.
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Journal Article
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Journal Name: Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America, 111(35):12883-12888
Research Org:
Pacific Northwest National Laboratory (PNNL), Richland, WA (US)
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Country of Publication:
United States
shewanella oneidensis; mr-1 bacterial nanowires; membranes; periplasmic extensions