Phytochromes are a family of photoreceptors used by green plants to entrain their development to the light environment. The distribution of these chromoproteins has been expanded beyond photoautotrophs with the discovery of phytochrome-like proteins in the nonphotosynthetic eubacteria Deinococcus radiodurans and Pseudomonas aeruginosa. Like plant phytochromes, the D. radiodurans receptor covalently binds linear tetrapyrroles autocatalytically to generate a photochromic holoprotein. However, the attachment site is distinct, using a histidine to potentially form a Schiff base linkage. Sequence homology and mutational analysis suggest that D. radiodurans bacteriophytochrome functions as a light-regulated histidine kinase, which helps protect the bacterium from visible light.
|Number of pages||4|
|State||Published - Dec 24 1999|