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J Agric Food Chem. 2001 Aug;49(8):4064-8.

Characterization of betacyanin oxidation catalyzed by a peroxidase from Beta vulgaris L. roots.

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  • 1Departamento de Biología Vegetal, Facultad de Biología, Universidad de Murcia, Campus de Espinardo, E-30100 Espinardo, Murcia, Spain.


A protein fraction with peroxidase (EC activity against guaiacol from Beta vulgaris L. roots oxidized both betanidin and betanin (betanidin 5-O-beta-D-glucoside), the former being the more efficient substrate for the enzyme. The protein fraction contained three strongly basic perxidase isoenzymes. Betanidin quinone was formed as the only product in the course of enzymatic betanidin oxidation, whereas betalamic acid and several oxidized cyclo-DOPA 5-O-beta-D-glucoside polymers were generated during the oxidation of betanin. In accordance with the catalytic properties of peroxidase, a possible mechanism for betanidin oxidation is proposed. This mechanism includes the formation of a betanidin radical, which, by further dismutation, yields betanidin quinone and betanidin. The betanidin oxidation rate showed a Michaelis-type dependence on the substrate concentration. The apparent K(M) for the reaction was 0.46 mM. On the basis of the spectral properties of the enzyme responsible for both betanidin and betanin oxidations, its peroxidase nature is suggested.

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