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Structure of the Peptidoglycan of Bacterial Spores: Occurrence of the Lactam of Muramic Acid

A. D. Warth and J. L. Strominger
Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America
Vol. 64, No. 2 (Oct. 15, 1969), pp. 528-535
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/59780
Page Count: 8
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Since scans are not currently available to screen readers, please contact JSTOR User Support for access. We'll provide a PDF copy for your screen reader.
Structure of the Peptidoglycan of Bacterial Spores: Occurrence of the Lactam of Muramic Acid
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Abstract

Six major oligosaccharides were released from the peptidoglycan of spores of Bacillus subtilis by lysozyme treatment. They were isolated and characterized as a disaccharide, tetrasaccharide, and hexasaccharide composed of equal amounts of muramic acid and glucosamine and containing two, three, and four acetyl groups, respectively. Three of the compounds were substituted by a single L-alanine residue, and the other three by a single tetrapeptide substituent on the acetylmuramic acid residue at the reducing end of each compound. The other muramic acid residue in the tetrasaccharides (and two of the three in the hexasaccharides) were shown to be present as muramic lactams, a sugar not previously found in nature and, hence, a unique spore constituent. Other features of the structure of spore peptidoglycan are discussed.

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