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Microbios. 2000;103(406):179-96.

Comparison of the fermentative alcohol dehydrogenases of Salmonella typhimurium and Escherichia coli.

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Department of Microbiology, Southern Illinois University, Carbondale 62901-6508, USA.


The adhE gene, encoding the fermentative alcohol dehydrogenase, from Salmonella typhimurium (Genbank accession number U68173) was cloned and sequenced. The Salmonella AdhE protein has 619/878 (70%) amino acid residues identical to the AdhE protein of Escherichia coli. Salmonella AdhE was synthesized only anaerobically. It was present in higher amounts when cells were grown on reduced substrates such as sorbitol, instead of glucose. Growth on glucuronate, which generated no net nicotinamide-adenine dinucleotide reduced (NADH) during metabolism, showed the lowest AdhE levels. Analysis of fermentation products by in vivo nuclear magenetic resonance showed that the proportion of ethanol was highest with sorbitol, intermediate with glucose and negligible with glucuronate. The Salmonella enzyme had a lower Michaelis-Menten constant (Km) for alcohol substrates than AdhE of E. coli although both enzymes displayed a similar Km for nicotinamide-adenine dinucleotide (NAD+). Although AdhE of E. coli was inactive with alcohols longer than four carbons, the Salmonella enzyme was still active with alcohols up to eight carbons.

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