Changes in ribonucleic acid turnover during aerobic and anaerobic growth in Rhodopseudomonas spheroides.
Differences in the rate and extent of degradation of ribonucleic acid (RNA) labeled by a 30-sec pulse in aerobically or anaerobically grown Rhodopseudomonas spheroides have been studied by using rifampin to block RNA synthesis. In anaerobic cultures, unstable RNA is degraded with a half-life of 1.25 to 2.0 min, and about 40% of the pulse-labeled RNA is stable. In aerobic cultures, the half-life of unstable RNA is increased to 2.5 to 4.0 min, and 50% of the RNA is stable. When aerobic cultures are transferred to anaerobic conditions, there is a rapid drop in half-life and in the proportion of stable RNA. When anaerobic cultures are made aerobic, the reverse changes occur after a lag of about 30 min. Addition of puromycin to either aerobic or anaerobic cultures caused the pulse-labeled RNA to be degraded at the same rate and to the same extent as the RNA in an anaerobic control culture. In contrast, addition of chloramphenicol enhanced the difference in RNA half-life and increased the proportion of stable RNA by about 10% in each case. It is concluded that there is a difference in the stability of an RNA component under aerobic and anaerobic conditions.