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Biochemistry. 1986 Jun 3;25(11):3261-7.

Biosynthetic alanine racemase of Salmonella typhimurium: purification and characterization of the enzyme encoded by the alr gene.


An alanine racemase, encoded by the alr (dal) gene and believed to be the biosynthetic source of D-alanine for cell wall formation, was purified to homogeneity from an overproducing strain of Salmonella typhimurium (dadB), and the enzymological properties of this enzyme were compared with those of the dadB alanine racemase that functions in the catabolism of L-alanine [Wasserman, S. A., Daub, E., Grisafi, P., Botstein, D., & Walsh, C. T. (1984) Biochemistry 23, 5182]. The alr-encoded enzyme has a monomeric structure with a molecular weight of about 40 000. One mole of pyridoxal 5'-phosphate is bound per mole of enzyme, which is essential for catalytic activity of the enzyme. After the internal Schiff base with pyridoxal 5'-phosphate was reduced with NaB3H4, followed by carboxamidomethylation and tryptic digestion of the enzyme, the amino acid sequence of the pyridoxal 5'-phosphate binding peptide was determined. The sequence of 10 amino acid residues around the lysine residue, to which pyridoxal 5'-phosphate is bound, was identical with that of the dadB racemase. No homology was found in the amino-terminal amino acid sequence between the two enzymes. The enzyme was inactivated with D- and L-beta-fluoroalanine, D- and L-beta-chloroalanine, and D-O-acetylserine in a mechanism-based fashion with a common partition ratio of about 150. The enzyme was labeled with an equimolar amount of [14C]-D-beta-chloroalanine. The inactivator-pyridoxal 5'-phosphate adduct was isolated and shown to be the same structure formed in the dadB racemase inactivation [Roise, D., Soda, K., Yagi, T., & Walsh, C. (1984) Biochemistry 23, 5195].

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