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J Bacteriol. 1972 Apr;110(1):165-70.

Control of the pathway of -aminobutyrate breakdown in Escherichia coli K-12.


Mutants of Escherichia coli K-12 isolated for their ability to utilize gamma-aminobutyrate (GABA) as the sole source of nitrogen exhibit a concomitant several-fold increase in the activities of gamma-aminobutyrate-alpha-ketoglutarate transaminase (GSST, EC and succinic semialdehyde dehydrogenase (SSDH, EC The increase in rate of enzymatic activity is not accompanied by any changes in the affinities of the mutant enzymes for their respective substrates. The synthesis of the two enzymes is highly coordinate under a great variety of conditions, in spite of the wide range of activities observed. In cultures grown in minimal media with ammonium salts as the source of nitrogen, both GSST and SSDH are severely repressed by glucose. Substitution of ammonia with GABA, glutamate, or aspartate greatly reduces the effect of glucose on the synthesis of the GABA utilization enzymes. This escape from catabolite repression is specific for GSST and SSDH and does not involve other enzymes sensitive to catabolite repression (e.g., beta-galactosidase, EC, and aspartase, EC

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