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Eur J Biochem. 1983 Jul 1;133(3):481-9.

The pyruvate dehydrogenase complex of Escherichia coli K12. Nucleotide sequence encoding the dihydrolipoamide acetyltransferase component.


The nucleotide sequence of the aceF gene, which encodes the dihydrolipoamide acetyltransferase component (E2) of the pyruvate dehydrogenase complex of Escherichia coli K12, has been determined using the dideoxy chain-termination method. The aceF gene comprises 1887 base pairs (629 codons excluding the initiation codon AUG); it is preceded by a short intercistronic segment of 14 base pairs containing a good ribosomal binding site, and it is followed closely by a potential rho-independent terminator. The results extend by 1980 base pairs the previously sequenced segment of 3780 base pairs containing the structural gene (aceE) of the pyruvate dehydrogenase component (E1) and they confirm that aceE and aceF are the proximal and distal genes of the ace operon. The amino terminus, carboxy-terminal sequence and amino acid composition of the acetyltransferase subunit predicted from the nucleotide sequence are in excellent agreement with previous studies with the purified protein. The predicted molecular weight (Mr = 65959) confirms experimental values derived from sedimentation equilibrium analysis and indicates that the higher values (78000-89000) that have been reported are due to unusual features of the protein that lead to anomalous mobilities during sodium dodecyl sulphate/polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis and in gel filtration. The primary structure fully supports conclusions, based on limited tryptic proteolysis, that the acetyltransferase subunit possesses two heterologous domains: the lipoyl domain and the subunit binding and catalytic domain. The lipoyl domain corresponds to the amino-terminal segment of the protein. It is acidic and contains three remarkably homologous repeating units of approximately 100 amino acids, each possessing a potential lipoyl binding site and a region that is characteristically rich in alanine and proline residues. The subunit binding and catalytic domain occupies most of the residual polypeptide in the carboxy-terminal segment.

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