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Microbiology. 2001 Dec;147(Pt 12):3367-75.

Meta-cleavage enzyme gene tesB is necessary for testosterone degradation in Comamonas testosteroni TA441.

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RIKEN, The Institute of Physical and Chemical Research, 2-1 Hirosawa, Wako-shi, Saitama 351-0198, Japan.


Comamonas testosteroni metabolizes testosterone as the sole carbon source via a meta-cleavage reaction. A meta-cleavage enzyme gene, tesB, was cloned from C. testosteroni TA441. The deduced N-terminal amino acid sequence of tesB matched that of the purified meta-cleavage enzyme which is induced in TA441 during growth on testosterone as the sole carbon source. The tesB-disrupted mutant did not show growth on testosterone, suggesting that tesB is necessary for TA441 to grow on testosterone. Downstream from tesB, three putative ORFs which encode products also necessary for growth of TA441 on testosterone were identified. The usual substrate of TesB is probably 3,4-dihydroxy-9,10-secoandrosta-1,3,5(10)-triene-9,17-dione. Although this compound was not identified in the gene disrupted mutants, accumulation of upstream metabolites of testosterone degradation, 4-androstene-3,17-dione and 1,4-androstadiene-3,17-dione, was shown by TLC analysis.

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