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Biochem Biophys Res Commun. 2001 Apr 27;283(1):195-204.

Isolation and characterization of the genes encoding a novel oxygenase component of angular dioxygenase from the gram-positive dibenzofuran-degrader Terrabacter sp. strain DBF63.

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Biotechnology Research Center, University of Tokyo, 1-1-1 Yayoi, Bunkyo-ku, Tokyo, 113-8657, Japan.


A gram-positive bacterium Terrabacter sp. strain DBF63 is able to degrade dibenzofuran (DF) via initial dioxygenation by a novel angular dioxygenase. The dbfA1 and dbfA2 genes, which encode the large and small subunits of the dibenzofuran 4,4a-dioxygenase (DFDO), respectively, were isolated by a polymerase chain reaction-based method. DbfA1 and DbfA2 showed moderate homology to the large and small subunits of other ring-hydroxylating dioxygenases (less than 40%), respectively, and some motifs such as the Fe(II) binding site and the [2Fe-2S] cluster ligands were conserved in DbfA1. DFDO activity was confirmed in Escherichia coli cells containing the cloned dbfA1 and dbfA2 genes with the complementation of nonspecific ferredoxin and ferredoxin reductase component of E. coli. Under this condition, these cells exhibited angular dioxygenation of DF and dibenzo-p-dioxin, and monooxygenation of fluorene, but not angular dioxygenation of carbazole, xanthene, and phenoxathiin. Phylogenetic analysis revealed that DbfA1 formed a branch with recently reported large subunits of polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbon (PAH) dioxygenase from gram-positive bacteria but did not cluster with that of other angular dioxygenases, i.e., DxnA1 from Sphingomonas sp. strain RW1 [Armengaud, J., Happe, B., and Timmis, K. N. J. Bacteriol. 180, 3954-3966, 1998] and CarAa from Pseudomonas sp. strain CA10 [Sato, S., Nam, J.-W., Kasuga, K., Nojiri, H., Yamane, H., and Omori, T. J. Bacteriol. 179, 4850-4858, 1997].

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