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Gene. 2000 Oct 3;256(1-2):223-8.

Expression of the bph genes involved in biphenyl/PCB degradation in Pseudomonas sp. KKS102 induced by the biphenyl degradation intermediate, 2-hydroxy-6-oxo-6-phenylhexa-2,4-dienoic acid.

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Department of Biotechnology, The University of Tokyo, 1-1-1 Yayoi, Bunkyo-ku, 113-8657, Tokyo, Japan.


The bph genes involved in PCB/biphenyl degradation in Pseudomonas sp. KKS102 are clustered as bphEGFA1A2A3BCDA4R. The bph genes are inducibly expressed in the presence of biphenyl. In order to understand the induction more fully, the inducer of bph gene expression was investigated. To identify the inducer molecule, we constructed four deletion mutants of the structural genes and analyzed the inducibility of the bphE gene in each mutant strain. In the wild-type cell and the bphD deletion mutant, the levels of the bphE transcript were enhanced in the presence of biphenyl. On the other hand, in the bphA, bphB, and bphC deletion mutants, levels of the bphE transcript were not enhanced in the presence of biphenyl. These results demonstrated that the series of reactions catalyzed by biphenyl dioxygenase (BphA), dihydrodiol dehydrogenase (BphB), and 2, 3-dihydroxybiphenyl dioxygenase (BphC) are necessary to convert biphenyl to the inducer. It is known that these reactions convert biphenyl to 2-hydroxy-6-oxo-6-phenylhexa-2,4-dienoic acid (HOPDA), and it was found that the expression of the bph genes was induced by purified HOPDA. These results clearly indicate that HOPDA is the inducer of the bph genes in KKS102.

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