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1.  Efficiency factors and ATP/ADP ratios in nitrogen-fixing Bacillus polymyxa and Bacillus azotofixans. 
Journal of Bacteriology  1990;172(4):1962-1968.
The efficiency factor, the number of moles of ATP generated per mole of glucose fermented, was determined in anaerobic, non-carbon-limited N2-fixing cultures of Bacillus polymyxa, Bacillus macerans, Bacillus azotofixans, and Clostridium butyricum through identification and quantitation of the fermentation products by 13C nuclear magnetic resonance spectroscopy and measurement of acetate kinase activities. All three Bacillus species had acetate kinase activities and produced acetate and ethanol as the major fermentation products. The maximum amounts of ATP generated per mole of glucose fermented were 2.70, 2.64, and 2.88 mol in B. polymyxa, B. macerans, and B. azotofixans, respectively, compared with 3.25 mol in C. butyricum. Thus, in the N2-fixing Bacillus species, the efficiency factors are lower than that in C. butyricum. Steady-state ATP/ADP concentration ratios were measured in non-carbon-limited N2-fixing cultures of B. polymyxa and B. azotofixans through separation and quantitation of the adenylates in cell extracts by ion-pair reversed-phase high-performance liquid chromatography. The observed ATP/ADP ratios were 4.5 and 3.8, and estimated energy charges were 0.81 to 0.86 and 0.81 to 0.83, respectively, for B. polymyxa and B. azotofixans. The results suggest that under these growth conditions, the rate of ATP regeneration is adequate to meet the energy requirement for N2 fixation in the Bacillus species, in contrast to N2-fixing Clostridium pasteurianum and Klebsiella pneumoniae, for which substantially lower steady-state ATP/ADP ratios and energy charges have been reported. Implications of the results are discussed in relation to possible differences between Bacillus and Clostridium species in energy requirements for N2 fixation and concomitant ammonia assimilation.
PMCID: PMC208692  PMID: 2318806
2.  Ammonia assimilation pathways in nitrogen-fixing Clostridium kluyverii and Clostridium butyricum. 
Journal of Bacteriology  1989;171(4):2148-2154.
Pathways of ammonia assimilation into glutamic acid were investigated in ammonia-grown and N2-fixing Clostridium kluyverii and Clostridium butyricum by measuring the specific activities of glutamate dehydrogenase, glutamine synthetase, and glutamate synthase. C. kluyverii had NADPH-glutamate dehydrogenase with a Km of 12.0 mM for NH4+. The glutamate dehydrogenase pathway played an important role in ammonia assimilation in ammonia-grown cells but was found to play a minor role relative to that of the glutamine synthetase/NADPH-glutamate synthase pathway in nitrogen-fixing cells when the intracellular NH4+ concentration and the low affinity of the enzyme for NH4+ were taken into account. In C. butyricum grown on glucose-salt medium with ammonia or N2 as the nitrogen source, glutamate dehydrogenase activity was undetectable, and the glutamine synthetase/NADH-glutamate synthase pathway was the predominant pathway of ammonia assimilation. Under these growth conditions, C. butyricum also lacked the activity of glucose-6-phosphate dehydrogenase, which catalyzes the regeneration of NADPH from NADP+. However, high activities of glucose-6-phosphate dehydrogenase as well as of NADPH-glutamate dehydrogenase with a Km of 2.8 mM for NH4+ were present in C. butyricum after growth on complex nitrogen and carbon sources. The ammonia-assimilating pathway of N2-fixing C. butyricum, which differs from that of the previously studied Bacillus polymyxa and Bacillus macerans, is discussed in relation to possible effects of the availability of ATP and of NADPH on ammonia-assimilating pathways.
PMCID: PMC209870  PMID: 2564848
3.  Role of glutamate dehydrogenase in ammonia assimilation in nitrogen-fixing Bacillus macerans. 
Journal of Bacteriology  1987;169(10):4692-4695.
Pathways of ammonia assimilation into glutamic acid in Bacillus macerans were investigated by measurements of the specific activities of glutamate dehydrogenase (GDH), glutamine synthetase, and glutamate synthase. In ammonia-rich medium, GDH was the predominant pathway of ammonia assimilation. In nitrogen-fixing cells in which the intracellular NH4+ concentration was 1.4 +/- 0.5 mM, the activity of GDH with a Km of 2.2 mM for NH4+ was found to be severalfold higher than that of glutamate synthase. The result suggests that GDH plays a significant role in the assimilation of NH4+ in N2-fixing B. macerans.
PMCID: PMC213841  PMID: 2888750

Results 1-3 (3)