Proteomic analysis of Rhodospirillum rubrum after carbon monoxide exposure reveals an important effect on metallic cofactor biosynthesis

J Proteomics. 2022 Jan 6;250:104389. doi: 10.1016/j.jprot.2021.104389. Epub 2021 Sep 30.


Some carboxydotrophs like Rhodospirillum rubrum are able to grow with CO as their sole source of energy using a Carbone monoxide dehydrogenase (CODH) and an Energy conserving hydrogenase (ECH) to perform anaerobically the so called water-gas shift reaction (WGSR) (CO + H2O → CO2 + H2). Several studies have focused at the biochemical and biophysical level on this enzymatic system and a few OMICS studies on CO metabolism. Knowing that CO is toxic in particular due to its binding to heme iron atoms, and is even considered as a potential antibacterial agent, we decided to use a proteomic approach in order to analyze R. rubrum adaptation in term of metabolism and management of the toxic effect. In particular, this study allowed highlighting a set of proteins likely implicated in ECH maturation, and important perturbations in term of cofactor biosynthesis, especially metallic cofactors. This shows that even this CO tolerant microorganism cannot avoid completely CO toxic effects associated with its interaction with metallic ions. SIGNIFICANCE: This proteomic study highlights the fact that even in a microorganism able to handle carbon monoxide and in some way detoxifying it via the intrinsic action of the carbon monoxide dehydrogenase (CODH), CO has important effects on metal homeostasis, metal cofactors and metalloproteins. These effects are direct or indirect via transcription regulation, and amplified by the high interdependency of cofactors biosynthesis.

Keywords: CO metabolism; Hydrogenogenic carboxydotrophs; Metallic cofactors; Proteomics; Rhodospirillum rubrum; Water-gas shift reaction.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Carbon Monoxide / metabolism
  • Carbon Monoxide / pharmacology
  • Hydrogenase* / metabolism
  • Hydrogenase* / pharmacology
  • Proteomics
  • Rhodospirillum rubrum* / metabolism


  • Carbon Monoxide
  • Hydrogenase