Iron-chelating hydroxamic acid (schizokinen) active in initiation of cell division in Bacillus megaterium.

Journal of bacteriology

PubMedID: 4960152

Byers BR, Powell MV, LANKFORD CE. Iron-chelating hydroxamic acid (schizokinen) active in initiation of cell division in Bacillus megaterium. J Bacteriol. 1967;93(1):286-94.
Bacillus megaterium ATCC 19213 secretes a cell division-initiating "schizokinen" (SK) which accumulates during its culture cycle to a concentration inversely proportional to the iron added to a sucrose-mineral salts medium. Secreted SK was purified from culture filtrates as a red Fe (III) chelate, and a fraction with similar biological properties was obtained from whole cells. Infrared spectra of SK, and analyses of unhydrolyzed and acid-hydrolyzed preparations indicated it to be a secondary hydroxamate; visible absorption maxima of the ferric complex showed pH dependency typical of ferric monohydroxamates. Schizokinen preparations from cultures grown at "normal" and at low Fe concentrations were similar biologically and in certain of their chemical properties, but their R(F) values and infrared spectra suggested nonidentity. Significant lag reduction of B. megaterium was effected by 0.2 mmug of SK per ml; the Fe (III)-SK chelate and "iron-free" SK were equally effective. A 50-mmug amount produced half-maximal growth response of the siderochrome auxotroph, Arthrobacter JG-9. Schizokinen also overcame ferrimycin A inhibition of three Bacillus species. These properties relate the B. megaterium schizokinen to the trihydroxamate siderochromes, although SK appears to be a monohydroxamate.