Neurospora crassa cytochrome C biosynthetically labelled with [S-Me-13C]methionine was prepared and analysed by 13C nuclear-magnetic-resonance spectroscopy. The methyl group of methionine is extensively incorporated into an N-trimethyl-lysine-72 residue arise from S-adenosylmethionine transmethylation, and that the methyl carbons of methionine residues are sufficiently close to the haem centre to experience chemical shifts from the ring currents of the tetrapyrrole pi electrons and broadening due to binding of methionine-80 with the haem, as well as interaction of the S-E113C]methyl groups with the paramagnetic iron centre. Although whole cells of the labelled Neurospora produced a 13C resonance at the expected position for the methionyl methyl group most of the methyl label was diverted into N-tetra-alkyl ammonium compounds. After an active state of growth these labelled N-methyl compounds appear, in the main, to be low-molecular-weight derivatives of choline which, if associated with membrane, are in a sufficiently fluid environment to have short rotational correlation times. During a subsequent dormant growth period these compounds become associated to some extent with relatively more immobile phases as a result of membrane binding or an increase in membrane rigidity.

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