When a total soluble extract of Nitrosomonas europaea was denatured with dodecyl sulphate, subjected to dodecyl sulphate/polyacrylamide-gel electrophoresis and illuminated with near-u.v. light, eight bands of protein fluorescence were observed. All but one of these bands were red in colour, a property characteristic of c-type cytochromes. Standard techniques were used to purify soluble c-type cytochromes from this organism, and it was then possible to assign all but two very minor bands to specific c-type cytochromes, namely hydroxylamine oxidase, cytochrome c-554, cytochrome c-552 and a cytochrome c-550 not previously described. The eight band had fluorescence peaking in the green region of the spectrum, probably caused by covalently bound flavin, and co-purified with hydroxylamine oxidase. The following physical properties were determined for these components: isoelectric point, molecular weights according to gel filtration and mobility on dodecyl sulphate/polyacrylamide gels, and α-band spectra at room temperature and 77K. Redox potentials were measured as follows: cytochrome c-554, Em,7 = +20mV; cytochrome c-552, Em,7 = +230mV; cytochrome c-550, Em,7 = +140mV. When washed membranes were applied to dodecyl sulphate/polyacrylamide gels in the same way, a number of fluorescent bands were observed that could be matched by soluble proteins. In addition, there was one band that could not be detected in supernatants, migrating with an apparent molecular weight of 24000. This species is probably coincident with a c-type cytochrome having Em,7 = +170mV found in redox titration of these membranes. In future studies, gel fluorescence should form a useful complement to spectroscopy for analysis of cytochrome composition in active cell-free preparations or semi-purified material.
- © 1982 London: The Biochemical Society