In prokaryotes, vitamin K2 (menaquinone) transfers two electrons in a process of aerobic or anaerobic respiration. Respiration occurs in the cell membrane of prokaryotic cells. Electron donors transfer two electrons to menaquinone (MK). Menaquinone in turn transfers these electrons to an electron acceptor. Menaquinones are vital for the electron transport chain. In the spectrum of Gram‐positive bacteria and Mycobacterium spp., vitamin K2 serves as the only quinone molecule in their electron shuffling systems. Hence, the bacterial enzymes associated with biosynthesis of the menaquinone(s) serve as potential target molecules for the development of new antibacterial drugs. This chapter summarizes the effects of vitamin K2 in bacteria and describes in more detail the aspects of menaquinone in bacterial electron transport in general, while also featuring the discoveries of menaquinone biosynthesis inhibitors.
Part of the book: Vitamin K2