Thomas Börner

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BACKGROUND Blooms of toxic cyanobacteria (blue-green algae) have become increasingly common in the surface waters of the world. Of the known toxins produced by cyanobacteria, the microcystins are the most significant threat to human and animal health. These cyclic peptides are potent inhibitors of eukaryotic protein phosphatases type 1 and 2A. Synthesized(More)
The nuclear genome of the model plant Arabidopsis thaliana contains a small gene family consisting of three genes encoding RNA polymerases of the single-subunit bacteriophage type. There is evidence that similar gene families also exist in other plants. Two of these RNA polymerases are putative mitochondrial enzymes, whereas the third one may represent the(More)
In addition to the RNA polymerases (RNAPs) transcribing the nuclear genes, eukaryotic cells also require RNAPs to transcribe the genes of the mitochondrial genome and, in plants, of the chloroplast genome. The plant Arabidopsis thaliana was found to contain two nuclear genes similar to genes encoding the mitochondrial RNAP from yeast and RNAPs of(More)
Several bloom-forming cyanobacterial genera produce potent inhibitors of eukaryotic protein phosphatases called microcystins. Microcystins are hepatotoxic cyclic heptapeptides and are presumed to be synthesized non-ribosomally by peptide synthetases. We identified putative peptide synthetase genes in the microcystin-producing strain Microcystis aeruginosa(More)
Microcystins are harmful hepatotoxins produced by many, but not all strains of the cyanobacterial genera Anabaena, Microcystis, Anabaena, Planktothrix, and Nostoc. Waterbodies have to be monitored for the mass development of toxic cyanobacteria; however, because of the close genetic relationship of microcystin-producing and non-producing strains within a(More)
The effects of microcystins on Daphnia galeata, a typical filter-feeding grazer in eutrophic lakes, were investigated. To do this, the microcystin-producing wild-type strain Microcystis aeruginosa PCC7806 was compared with a mcy- PCC7806 mutant, which could not synthesize any variant of microcystin due to mutation of a microcystin synthetase gene. The(More)
Microcystins represent an extraordinarily large family of cyclic heptapeptide toxins that are nonribosomally synthesized by various cyanobacteria. Microcystins specifically inhibit the eukaryotic protein phosphatases 1 and 2A. Their outstanding variability makes them particularly useful for studies on the evolution of structure-function relationships in(More)
Microcystin, a hepatotoxin known to be the cause of animal and human deaths, is produced by the bloom-forming cyanobacterium Microcystis aeruginosa in freshwater bodies worldwide. The toxin is produced nonribosomally via a multifunctional enzyme complex, consisting of both peptide synthetase and polyketide synthase modules coded for by the mcy gene cluster.(More)
Cyanobacteria are a prolific source of secondary metabolites, including compounds with toxic and enzyme-inhibiting activities. Microcystins and nodularins are the end products of a secondary metabolic pathway comprised of mixed polyketide synthases and nonribosomal peptide synthetases. Both peptides are potent natural toxins produced by distantly related(More)
Prochlorococcus marinus CCMP 1375, a ubiquitous and ecologically important marine prochlorophyte, was bound to possess functional genes coding for the alpha and beta subunits of a phycobiliprotein. The latter is similar to phycoerythrins (PE) from marine Synechococcus cyanobacteria and bind a phycourobilin-like pigment as the major chromophore. However,(More)