Date of Award

2-19-2007

Degree Type

Thesis

Degree Name

Bachelor of Science (BS)

Department

Chemistry

First Advisor

Dr. Robert Sattelmeyer - Chair

Second Advisor

Dr. Dixon

Abstract

The protein SiaA (Streptococcal iron acquisition) is involved in heme uptake in the bacterium Streptococcus pyogenes. It is difficult to obtain this protein in its fully holo form (completely loaded with heme). To increase the concentration of heme in the growing cell, we added ä-aminolevulinic acid (ALA) and ferrous sulfate (FeSO4), precursors of heme, to the growth media. Neither increasing the concentration of heme in vivo, nor growth at lower temperature for longer times, increased the production of holoprotein. The classical method of measuring the concentration of heme in a newly discovered heme protein is cumbersome. We have developed an improved method, which gives a solution that is more stable and has a cleaner spectrum. With further development, this new technique may replace the classical assay. Background information on S. pyogenes, SiaA, ABC transporters, heme biosynthesis, and the pyridine hemochrome assay are described.

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