The manganese and iron superoxide dismutases protect Escherichia coli from heavy metal toxicity.

Superoxide dismutases (SODs) are vital components that defend against oxidative stress through decomposition of superoxide radical. Escherichia coli contains two highly homologous SODs, a manganese- and an iron-containing enzyme (Mn-SOD and Fe-SOD, respectively). In contrast, a single Mn-SOD is present in Bacillus subtilis. In E. coli, the absence of SODs… (More)