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The chemical structure and electron transport mechanism of periplasmic bacterial wires

Check out our pre-print:

Efficient long-range conduction in cable bacteria through nickel protein wires.


We combined high-resolution microscopy, spectroscopy, and chemical imaging on individual cable bacterium filaments and demonstrate that the periplasmic wires consist of a conductive protein core surrounded by an insulating shell layer.


The core proteins contain a sulfur-ligated nickel cofactor, and conductivity decreases when nickel is oxidized or selectively removed.


The involvement of nickel as the active metal in biological conduction suggests a hitherto unknown form of electron transport that enables efficient conduction in centimeter-long protein structures.

Link: https://www.biorxiv.org/content/10.1101/2020.10.23.351973v1.full.pdf


Thanks lots to Eric for compiling all our data and leading the efforts. Is has been a highly inspirational journey.

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©2020 by Karina K. Sand

karina.sand@gmail.com

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