Structure prediction of magnetosome-associated proteins

Hila Nudelman, Raz Zarivach

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

56 Scopus citations


Magnetotactic bacteria (MTB) are Gram-negative bacteria that can navigate along geomagnetic fields. This ability is a result of a unique intracellular organelle, the magnetosome. These organelles are composed of membrane-enclosed magnetite (Fe3O4) or greigite (Fe3S4) crystals ordered into chains along the cell. Magnetosome formation, assembly, and magnetic nano-crystal biomineralization are controlled by magnetosome-associated proteins (MAPs). Most MAP-encoding genes are located in a conserved genomic region - the magnetosome island (MAI). The MAI appears to be conserved in all MTB that were analyzed so far, although the MAI size and organization differs between species. It was shown that MAI deletion leads to a non-magnetic phenotype, further highlighting its important role in magnetosome formation. Today, about 28 proteins are known to be involved in magnetosome formation, but the structures and functions of most MAPs are unknown. To reveal the structure-function relationship of MAPs we used bioinformatics tools in order to build homology models as a way to understand their possible role in magnetosome formation. Here we present a predicted 3D structural models' overview for all known Magnetospirillum gryphiswaldense strain MSR-1 MAPs.

Original languageEnglish
Article number9
JournalFrontiers in Microbiology
Issue numberJAN
StatePublished - 1 Jan 2014


  • Magnetosome
  • Magnetotactic bacteria
  • Membrane invagination
  • Protein structure-function
  • Structure prediction


Dive into the research topics of 'Structure prediction of magnetosome-associated proteins'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this