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Biochim Biophys Acta. 1997 Sep 4;1348(1-2):192-200.

Cardiolipin synthase from Escherichia coli.

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  • 1Queens College CUNY, Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry, Flushing, NY 11367, USA. btr$


Escherichia coli cardiolipin synthase catalyzes reversible phosphatidyl group transfer from one phosphatidylglycerol molecule to another to form cardiolipin (CL) and glycerol. The enzyme is specified by the cls gene, located at min 28.02 of the E. coli genetic map. Cells with mutations in cls have longer doubling times, tend to lose viability in the stationary phase, are more resistant to 3,4-dihydroxybutyl-1-phosphonate, and have an altered sensitivity to novobiocin. Although cls null mutants appear to lack CL synthase activity, they are still able to form trace quantities of CL. The enzyme appears to be regulated at both the genetic and enzymatic levels. CL synthase's molecular mass is 45-46 kDa, or about 8 kDa less than the polypeptide predicted by the gene sequence, suggesting that posttranslational processing occurs. CL synthase can use various polyols such as mannitol and arabitol to convert CL to the corresponding phosphatidylglycerol analog. When the amino acid sequences of four bacterial CL synthases are compared, three highly conserved regions are apparent. One of these regions contains a conserved pentapeptide sequence, RN(Q)HRK, and another has a conserved HXK sequence. These two sequences may be part of the active site. E. coli CL synthase has been studied by using a mixed micelle assay. The enzyme is inhibited by CL, the product of the reaction, and by phosphatidate. Phosphatidylethanolamine partially offsets inhibition caused by CL but not by phosphatidate. CDP-diacylglycerol does not appear to affect the activity of the purified enzyme but does stimulate the activity associated with crude membrane preparations.

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