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Microbiology. 2004 Jan;150(Pt 1):85-94.

Biosynthesis of the dichloroacetyl component of chloramphenicol in Streptomyces venezuelae ISP5230: genes required for halogenation.

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  • 1Department of Biology, Dalhousie University, Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada B3H 4J1.

Abstract

Five ORFs were detected in a fragment from the Streptomyces venezuelae ISP5230 genomic DNA library by hybridization with a PCR product amplified from primers representing a consensus of known halogenase sequences. Sequencing and functional analyses demonstrated that ORFs 11 and 12 (but not ORFs 13-15) extended the partially characterized gene cluster for chloramphenicol (Cm) biosynthesis in the chromosome. Disruption of ORF11 (cmlK) or ORF12 (cmlS) and conjugal transfer of the insertionally inactivated genes to S. venezuelae gave mutant strains VS1111 and VS1112, each producing a similar series of Cm analogues in which unhalogenated acyl groups replaced the dichloroacetyl substituent of Cm. 1H-NMR established that the principal metabolite in the disrupted strains was the alpha-N-propionyl analogue. The sequence of CmlK implicated the protein in adenylation, and involvement in halogenation was inferred from biosynthesis of analogues by the cmlK-disrupted mutant. A role in generating the dichloroacetyl substituent was supported by partial restoration of Cm biosynthesis when a cloned copy of cmlK was introduced in trans into VS1111. Complementation of the mutant also indicated that inactivation of cmlK rather than a polar effect of the disruption on cmlS expression had interfered with dichloroacetyl biosynthesis. The deduced CmlS sequence resembled sequences of FADH2-dependent halogenases. Conjugal transfer of cmlK or cmlS into S. venezuelae cml-2, a chlorination-deficient strain with a mutation mapped genetically to the Cm biosynthesis gene cluster, did not complement the cml-2 lesion, suggesting that one or more genes in addition to cmlK and cmlS is needed to assemble the dichloroacetyl substituent. Insertional inactivation of ORF13 did not affect Cm production, and the products of ORF14 and ORF15 matched Streptomyces coelicolor A3(2) proteins lacking plausible functions in Cm biosynthesis. Thus cmlS appears to mark the downstream end of the gene cluster.

PMID:
14702400
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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