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Vol. 59 (2017) No. 4 p. 166-173




Iron is an essential element for almost all living organism as it serves as a catalytic center for redox and metabolic reactions in many enzymes. Bacterial pathogens have evolved the efficient systems for the heme acquisition to survive in the host tissues and body fluids, because the heme is a rich source of iron. Pathogens grab the heme from the host hemoproteins and import it into cytoplasm by using many proteins including hemophore and ATP hydrolysis-driven transporter. In this review, recent discoveries in the molecular mechanism of the heme acquisition, membrane transport, degradation and sensing of the heme, with particular emphasis on the recognition of the heme and the dynamics of protein conformation from structural viewpoint.

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