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J Bacteriol. 2003 Dec;185(23):6790-800.

New bacterial pathway for 4- and 5-chlorosalicylate degradation via 4-chlorocatechol and maleylacetate in Pseudomonas sp. strain MT1.

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  • 1Department of Environmental Microbiology, GBF-German Research Center for Biotechnology, D-38124 Braunschweig, Germany.


Pseudomonas sp. strain MT1 is capable of degrading 4- and 5-chlorosalicylates via 4-chlorocatechol, 3-chloromuconate, and maleylacetate by a novel pathway. 3-Chloromuconate is transformed by muconate cycloisomerase of MT1 into protoanemonin, a dominant reaction product, as previously shown for other muconate cycloisomerases. However, kinetic data indicate that the muconate cycloisomerase of MT1 is specialized for 3-chloromuconate conversion and is not able to form cis-dienelactone. Protoanemonin is obviously a dead-end product of the pathway. A trans-dienelactone hydrolase (trans-DLH) was induced during growth on chlorosalicylates. Even though the purified enzyme did not act on either 3-chloromuconate or protoanemonin, the presence of muconate cylcoisomerase and trans-DLH together resulted in considerably lower protoanemonin concentrations but larger amounts of maleylacetate formed from 3-chloromuconate than the presence of muconate cycloisomerase alone resulted in. As trans-DLH also acts on 4-fluoromuconolactone, forming maleylacetate, we suggest that this enzyme acts on 4-chloromuconolactone as an intermediate in the muconate cycloisomerase-catalyzed transformation of 3-chloromuconate, thus preventing protoanemonin formation and favoring maleylacetate formation. The maleylacetate formed in this way is reduced by maleylacetate reductase. Chlorosalicylate degradation in MT1 thus occurs by a new pathway consisting of a patchwork of reactions catalyzed by enzymes from the 3-oxoadipate pathway (catechol 1,2-dioxygenase, muconate cycloisomerase) and the chlorocatechol pathway (maleylacetate reductase) and a trans-DLH.

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