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Plant Physiol Biochem. 2009 Aug;47(8):657-62. doi: 10.1016/j.plaphy.2009.03.005. Epub 2009 Mar 25.

Effect of the ferredoxin electron donor on sunflower (Helianthus annuus) desaturases.

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  • 1Instituto de la Grasa (CSIC), Av. Padre García Tejero 4, 41012 Sevilla, Spain.


Ferredoxins are proteins that participate in photosynthesis and in other processes that require reducing equivalents, such as the reduction of nitrogen or fatty acid desaturation. Two classes of ferredoxins have been described in plants: light-regulated photosynthetic ferredoxins and heterotrophic ferredoxins whose activity is not influenced by light. Genes encoding the two forms of ferredoxin have been cloned and characterized in developing sunflower cotyledons. Here, these genes were overexpressed in Escherichia coli and they were purified by ion exchange and size exclusion chromatography to study their capacity to supply electrons to two different sunflower desaturases: soluble stearoyl-ACP desaturase from sunflower cotyledons, and membrane bound desaturase FAD7 expressed in yeast. In both cases photosynthetic ferredoxin was the form that promoted the strongest desaturase activity.

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