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FEBS Lett. 1994 Sep 12;351(3):360-4.

Generation of the topa quinone cofactor in bacterial monoamine oxidase by cupric ion-dependent autooxidation of a specific tyrosyl residue.

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Institute of Scientific and Industrial Research, Osaka University, Japan.


The quinone of 2,4,5-trihydroxyphenylalanine (topa), recently identified as the covalently bound redox cofactor in copper amine oxidases, is encoded by a specific tyrosine codon. To elucidate the mechanism of its formation, the recombinant phenylethylamine oxidase of Arthrobacter globiformis has been overproduced in Escherichia coli and purified in a Cu(2+)-deficient form. The inactive precursor enzyme thus obtained was dramatically activated upon incubation with Cu2+, concomitantly with the formation of the topa quinone at the position corresponding to Tyr382, occurring in the tetrapeptide sequence highly conserved in this class of enzymes. The topa quinone was produced only under aerobic conditions, but its formation required no external enzymatic systems. These findings demonstrate the Cu(2+)-dependent autooxidation of a specific tyrosyl residue to generate the topa quinone cofactor.

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