Respiratory protein interactions in Dehalobacter sp. strain 8M revealed through genomic and native proteomic analyses

Jesica M. Soder-Walz, Kenneth Wasmund, Darja Deobald, Teresa Vicent, Lorenz Adrian, Ernest Marco-Urrea

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Dehalobacter (Firmicutes) encompass obligate organohalide-respiring bacteria used for bioremediation of groundwater contaminated with halogenated organics. Various aspects of their biochemistry remain unknown, including the identities and interactions of respiratory proteins. Here, we sequenced the genome of Dehalobacter sp. strain 8M and analysed its protein expression. Strain 8M encodes 22 reductive dehalogenase homologous (RdhA) proteins. RdhA D8M_v2_40029 (TmrA) was among the two most abundant proteins during growth with trichloromethane and 1,1,2-trichloroethane. To examine interactions of respiratory proteins, we used blue native gel electrophoresis together with dehalogenation activity tests and mass spectrometry. The highest activities were found in gel slices with the highest abundance of TmrA. Protein distributions across gel lanes provided biochemical evidence that the large and small subunits of the membrane-bound [NiFe] uptake hydrogenase (HupL and HupS) interacted strongly and that HupL/S interacted weakly with RdhA. Moreover, the interaction of RdhB and membrane-bound b-type cytochrome HupC was detected. RdhC proteins, often encoded in rdh operons but without described function, migrated in a protein complex not associated with HupL/S or RdhA. This study provides the first biochemical evidence of respiratory protein interactions in Dehalobacter, discusses implications for the respiratory architecture and advances the molecular comprehension of this unique respiratory chain.
Original languageEnglish
Number of pages17
JournalEnvironmental Microbiology
Early online date14 Jul 2023
Publication statusEarly online - 14 Jul 2023


  • Dehalogenation
  • Dehalobacter
  • Respiration
  • Proteomics

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