Methylobacillus flagellatus KT
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Photo: Yu.A. Trotsenko and N.V. Doronina

The availability of the genomic sequence for M. flagellatus, a b-proteobacterial methylotroph will enhance and accelerate research in the fields of methylotrophy, microbial diversity and metabolic evolution. Two methylotroph genome sequences are currently available, covering two of the major classes of methylotrophs, the a-proteobacterial serine cycle methylotroph Methylobacterium extorquens AM1 (Univ. of Washington; funded by NIH) and the the g-proteobacterial ribulose monophosphate cycle methanotroph Methylococcus capsulatus Bath (TIGR funded by DOE/Univ. Bergen). However, a significant gap in our genomic level understanding of methylotrophy exists, as no sequence is available for a representative of the third major group of methylotrophs, the ribulose monophosphate pathway methanol-utilizers found in the b-proteobacteria. This genome sequence will fill that gap and greatly enhance our ability to analyze methylotrophy using genomic approaches.