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J Biol Chem. 2000 Nov 3;275(44):34375-81.

Promoter trapping of a novel medium-chain acyl-CoA oxidase, which is induced transcriptionally during Arabidopsis seed germination.

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  • 1Centre for Novel Agricultural Products, Department of Biology, University of York, York, YO10 5YW, United Kingdom.


The first step of peroxisomal fatty acid beta-oxidation is catalyzed by a family of acyl-CoA oxidase isozymes with distinct fatty acyl-CoA chain-length specificities. Here we identify a new acyl-CoA oxidase gene from Arabidopsis (AtACX3) following the isolation of a promoter-trapped mutant in which beta-glucuronidase expression was initially detected in the root meristem. In acx3 mutant seedlings medium-chain acyl-CoA oxidase activity was reduced by 95%, whereas long- and short-chain activities were unchanged. Despite this reduction in activity lipid catabolism and seedling development were not perturbed. AtACX3 was cloned and expressed in Escherichia coli. The recombinant enzyme displayed medium-chain acyl-CoA substrate specificity. Analysis of beta-glucuronidase activity in acx3 revealed that, in addition to constitutive expression in the root axis, AtACX3 is also up-regulated strongly in the hypocotyl and cotyledons of germinating seedlings. This suggests that beta-oxidation is regulated predominantly at the level of transcription in germinating oilseeds. After the discovery of AtACX3, the Arabidopsis acyl-CoA oxidase gene family now comprises four isozymes with substrate specificities that encompass the full range of acyl-CoA chain lengths that exist in vivo.

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