A wealth of new information contributing to our understanding of carbon dioxide fixation in chemoautotrophs has been gathered since the previous comprehensive reviews on the subject. However, for every question answered, many others have been unmasked. For example, how does the carboxysome enhance CO2 fixation? How is the expression of the

carboxysome genes regulated? How is the carboxysome assembled? Where are the Calvin cycle genes organized in chemoautotrophic bacteria in which the cbbLS is not clustered with other cbb genes? Is CO2 fixation controlled by a phospho-relay system as is the case in RB.

sphaeroides? Does NADPH activate CbbR in vivo? What is the mechanism by which CbbR activates transcription of the Calvin cycle genes? Is CbbR involved in the regulation of carboxysome gene expression? How did the Calvin cycle evolve? The answer to these, as well as to many other questions, will likely be the subject of a future review.


Some of the material in this article is based on work supported by the Cooperative State Research Service, US Department of Agriculture, under agreement No. 92-37306-7663 (JMS); a National Science Foundation Grant, MCB-9513481 (JMS); a grant from the Royal Society (WGM); and a European Union HumanCapital and Mobility Institutional Grant (ERBCHBGCT930293) (WGM). We wish to thank K. Verschueren and T. Wilkinson of the Department of Chemistry, University of York, for helpful discussions on CysB structural data.

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