Magnetosome dynamics in magnetotactic bacteria

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Diffusive motions of the magnetosomes (enveloped Fe3O4 particles) in the magnetotactic bacterium Aquaspirillum magnetotacticum result in a very broad-line Mössbauer spectrum (T approximately 100 mm/s) above freezing temperatures. The line width increases with increasing temperature. The data are analyzed using a bounded diffusion model to yield the rotational and translational motions of the magnetosomes as well as the effective viscosity of the material surrounding the magnetosomes. The results are [theta 2] l/2 less than 1.5 degrees and [x2] 1/2 less than 8.4 A for the rotational and translational motions, respectively, implying that the particles are fixed in whole cells. The effective viscosity is 10 cP at 295 K and increases with decreasing temperature. Additional Fe3+ material in the cell is shown to be associated with the magnetosomes. Fe2+ material in the cell appears to be associated with the cell envelope. © 1984, The Biophysical Society. All rights reserved.




Ofer, S., Nowik, I., Bauminger, E. R., Papaefthymiou, G. C., Frankel, R. B., & Blakemore, R. P. (1984). Magnetosome dynamics in magnetotactic bacteria. Biophysical Journal, 46(1), 57–64.

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