Irradiation of Bacterial Luciferase in vivo

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Science  09 Feb 1962:
Vol. 135, Issue 3502, pp. 430-432
DOI: 10.1126/science.135.3502.430-a


The fading of in vivo luminescence which is characteristically displayed by resting cell suspensions of the luminous bacteria Photobacterium fischeri is partly accounted for by a gradual loss of active luciferase. This luminescence is further diminished by exposure of such suspensions to gamma radiation, but the irradiated cells yield more, rather than less, active luciferase than do cells of the non-irradiated suspension. These and similar results with menadione-treated cells indicate that, while luciferase is gradually inactivated by its catalysis of light production, it can resist inactivation by radiation better than can some component of its supporting metabolism.