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Appl Microbiol Biotechnol. 2014 Feb;98(3):1349-56. doi: 10.1007/s00253-013-5001-z. Epub 2013 Jun 5.

The catabolism of 2,4-xylenol and p-cresol share the enzymes for the oxidation of para-methyl group in Pseudomonas putida NCIMB 9866.

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Key Laboratory of Agricultural and Environmental Microbiology, Wuhan Institute of Virology, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Wuhan, 430071, China.


Pseudomonas putida NCIMB 9866 utilizes p-cresol or 2,4-xylenol as a sole carbon and energy source. Enzymes catalyzing the oxidation of the para-methyl group of p-cresol have been studied in detail. However, those responsible for the oxidation of the para-methyl group in 2,4-xylenol catabolism are still not reported. In this study, real-time quantitative PCR analysis indicated pchC- and pchF-encoded p-cresol methylhydroxylase (PCMH) and pchA-encoded p-hydroxybenzaldehyde dehydrogenase (PHBDD) in p-cresol catabolism were also likely involved in the catabolism of 2,4-xylenol. Enzyme activity assays and intermediate identification indicated that the PCMH and PHBDD catalyzed the oxidations of 2,4-xylenol to 4-hydroxy-3-methylbenzaldehyde and 4-hydroxy-3-methylbenzaldehyde to 4-hydroxy-3-methylbenzoic acid, respectively. Furthermore, the PCMH-encoding gene pchF was found to be necessary for the catabolism of 2,4-xylenol, whereas the PHBDD-encoding gene pchA was not essential for the catabolism by gene knockout and complementation. Analyses of the maximum specific growth rate (μ m) and specific activity of the gene-knockout strain to different intermediates revealed the presence of other enzyme(s) with PHBDD activity in strain 9866. However, PHBDD played a major role in the catabolism of 2,4-xylenol in contrast to the other enzyme(s).

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