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Structural Peculiarities of the O-Specific Polysaccharides of Azospirillum Bacteria of Serogroup III

Yu. P. Fedonenko1*, A. S. Boiko1, E. L. Zdorovenko2, S. A. Konnova1,3, A. S. Shashkov2, V. V. Ignatov1,3, and Yu. A. Knirel2

1Institute of Biochemistry and Physiology of Plants and Microorganisms, Russian Academy of Sciences, pr. Entuziastov 13, 410049 Saratov, Russia; fax: (8452) 970-383; E-mail: room308@ibppm.sgu.ru

2Zelinsky Institute of Organic Chemistry, Russian Academy of Sciences, Leninsky pr. 47, 119991 Moscow, Russia; E-mail: evelina@ioc.ac.ru

3Saratov State University, ul. Astrakhanskaya 83, 410012 Saratov, Russia; E-mail: konnovasa@info.sgu.ru

* To whom correspondence should be addressed.

Received January 1, 2011; Revision received February 11, 2011
Lipopolysaccharides and O-specific polysaccharides were isolated from the outer membrane of bacterial cells of three strains belonging to two Azospirillum species, and their structures were established by monosaccharide analysis including determination of the absolute configurations, methylation analysis, and one- and two-dimensional NMR spectroscopy. It was shown that while having the identical composition, the O-polysaccharides have different branched tetrasaccharide repeating units. Two neutral polysaccharides were found in the lipopolysaccharide of A. brasilense 54, and the structure for the predominant O-polysaccharide was determined. The structural data, together with results of serological studies, enabled assignment of strains examined to a novel serogroup, III. The chemical basis for the serological relatedness among the azospirilla of this serogroup is presumably the presence of a common →3)-α-L-Rhap-(1→2)-α-L-Rhap-(1→3)-α-L-Rhap-(1→ oligosaccharide motif in their O-polysaccharides.
KEY WORDS: Azospirillum, lipopolysaccharide, O-antigen, O-polysaccharide structure, serological characterization

DOI: 10.1134/S0006297911070108