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Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 1996 Jun 11;93(12):5720-5.

Adenylate kinase complements nucleoside diphosphate kinase deficiency in nucleotide metabolism.

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  • 1Department of Biochemistry, Robert Wood Johnson Medical School, Piscataway, NJ 08854, USA.


Nucleoside diphosphate (NDP) kinase is a ubiquitous nonspecific enzyme that evidently is designed to catalyze in vivo ATP-dependent synthesis of ribo- and deoxyribonucleoside triphosphates from the corresponding diphosphates. Because Escherichia coli contains only one copy of ndk, the structural gene for this enzyme, we were surprised to find that ndk disruption yields bacteria that are still viable. These mutant cells contain a protein with a small amount NDP kinase activity. The protein responsible for this activity was purified and identified as adenylate kinase. This enzyme, also called myokinase, catalyzes the reversible ATP-dependent synthesis of ADP from AMP. We found that this enzyme from E. coli as well as from higher eukaryotes has a broad substrate specificity displaying dual enzymatic functions. Among the nucleoside monophosphate kinases tested, only adenylate kinase was found to have NDP kinase activity. To our knowledge, this is the first report of NDP kinase activity associated with adenylate kinase.

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