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Type IV Pili-independent photocurrent production by the cyanobacterium synechocystis sp. PCC 6803

Type IV Pili-independent photocurrent production by the cyanobacterium synechocystis sp. PCC 6803
Type IV Pili-independent photocurrent production by the cyanobacterium synechocystis sp. PCC 6803
Biophotovoltaic devices utilize photosynthetic organisms such as the model cyanobacterium Synechocystis sp. PCC 6803 (Synechocystis) to generate current for power or hydrogen production from light. These devices have been improved by both architecture engineering and genetic engineering of the phototrophic organism. However, genetic approaches are limited by lack of understanding of cellular mechanisms of electron transfer from internal metabolism to the cell exterior. Type IV pili have been implicated in extracellular electron transfer (EET) in some species of heterotrophic bacteria. Furthermore, conductive cell surface filaments have been reported for cyanobacteria, including Synechocystis. However, it remains unclear whether these filaments are type IV pili and whether they are involved in EET. Herein, a mediatorless electrochemical setup is used to compare the electrogenic output of wild-type Synechocystis to that of a ΔpilD mutant that cannot produce type IV pili. No differences in photocurrent, i.e., current in response to illumination, are detectable. Furthermore, measurements of individual pili using conductive atomic force microscopy indicate these structures are not conductive. These results suggest that pili are not required for EET by Synechocystis, supporting a role for shuttling of electrons via soluble redox mediators or direct interactions between the cell surface and extracellular substrates.
biophotovoltaics, cyanobacteria, extracellular electron transfer, nanowire, photocurrent, type IV pili
1664-302X
1-11
Thirumurthy, Miyuki
b2a5bc47-5edf-49c5-b6bc-ec34b404efe1
Hitchcock, Andrew
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Cereda, Angelo
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Liu, Jiawei
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Chavez, Marko
f8ad9ce2-2808-434d-8f38-b70dc9ad7b88
Doss, Bryant
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Ros, Robert
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El-Naggar, Mohamed
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Heap, John
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Bibby, Thomas
e04ea079-dd90-4ead-9840-00882de27ebd
Jones, Anne
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Thirumurthy, Miyuki
b2a5bc47-5edf-49c5-b6bc-ec34b404efe1
Hitchcock, Andrew
6ca8b0ea-8cec-488a-a951-14c2ab85caeb
Cereda, Angelo
08967918-b935-4fde-bc13-c34360a4831c
Liu, Jiawei
cc595607-c548-49cc-9220-fbcf47404be8
Chavez, Marko
f8ad9ce2-2808-434d-8f38-b70dc9ad7b88
Doss, Bryant
32d263b3-c3bc-4ca3-a019-e9bb9533fd0d
Ros, Robert
42f1162f-657d-495a-806f-b05f259c0fda
El-Naggar, Mohamed
83e476ba-c7f9-48e9-987e-2119d349af1a
Heap, John
a221b382-c0f0-4f8b-87d2-568ca1539b63
Bibby, Thomas
e04ea079-dd90-4ead-9840-00882de27ebd
Jones, Anne
ad158f18-99bb-46d5-a7dc-e61e04179aae

Thirumurthy, Miyuki, Hitchcock, Andrew, Cereda, Angelo, Liu, Jiawei, Chavez, Marko, Doss, Bryant, Ros, Robert, El-Naggar, Mohamed, Heap, John, Bibby, Thomas and Jones, Anne (2020) Type IV Pili-independent photocurrent production by the cyanobacterium synechocystis sp. PCC 6803. Frontiers in Microbiology, 11, 1-11, [1344]. (doi:10.3389/fmicb.2020.01344).

Record type: Article

Abstract

Biophotovoltaic devices utilize photosynthetic organisms such as the model cyanobacterium Synechocystis sp. PCC 6803 (Synechocystis) to generate current for power or hydrogen production from light. These devices have been improved by both architecture engineering and genetic engineering of the phototrophic organism. However, genetic approaches are limited by lack of understanding of cellular mechanisms of electron transfer from internal metabolism to the cell exterior. Type IV pili have been implicated in extracellular electron transfer (EET) in some species of heterotrophic bacteria. Furthermore, conductive cell surface filaments have been reported for cyanobacteria, including Synechocystis. However, it remains unclear whether these filaments are type IV pili and whether they are involved in EET. Herein, a mediatorless electrochemical setup is used to compare the electrogenic output of wild-type Synechocystis to that of a ΔpilD mutant that cannot produce type IV pili. No differences in photocurrent, i.e., current in response to illumination, are detectable. Furthermore, measurements of individual pili using conductive atomic force microscopy indicate these structures are not conductive. These results suggest that pili are not required for EET by Synechocystis, supporting a role for shuttling of electrons via soluble redox mediators or direct interactions between the cell surface and extracellular substrates.

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Accepted/In Press date: 26 May 2020
Published date: 25 June 2020
Keywords: biophotovoltaics, cyanobacteria, extracellular electron transfer, nanowire, photocurrent, type IV pili

Identifiers

Local EPrints ID: 442229
URI: http://eprints.soton.ac.uk/id/eprint/442229
ISSN: 1664-302X
PURE UUID: 404a28b3-f272-4b8e-8fb4-1a943ddc3a3f

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Date deposited: 09 Jul 2020 16:31
Last modified: 26 Jan 2021 17:33

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