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Eur J Biochem. 1998 Feb 1;251(3):907-15.

Phenylglyoxylate:NAD+ oxidoreductase (CoA benzoylating), a new enzyme of anaerobic phenylalanine metabolism in the denitrifying bacterium Azoarcus evansii.

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Mikrobiologie, Institut Biologie II, Universität Freiburg, Germany.


Phenylglyoxylate (benzoylformate) is an intermediate in the anoxic metabolism of phenylalanine and phenylacetate. It is formed by alpha-oxidation of phenylacetyl-CoA. Phenylglyoxylate is oxidatively decarboxylated by phenylglyoxylate-oxidoreductase to benzoyl-CoA, a central intermediate of anaerobic aromatic metabolism. The phenylglyoxylate oxidizing enzyme activity in the denitrifying bacterium Azoarcus evansii was induced during anaerobic growth with phenylalanine, phenylacetate and phenylglyoxylate, but not with benzoate. The new enzyme phenylglyoxylate:acceptor oxidoreductase was purified and studied. The oxygen-sensitive enzyme reduced both NAD+ and viologen dyes. It was composed of five subunits of approximately 50, 48, 43, 24, and 11.5 kDa; the native mass as determined by gel filtration was 370 kDa, suggesting an alpha2 beta2 gamma2 delta2 epsilon2 composition. Phenylglyoxylate:acceptor oxidoreductase exhibited an ultraviolet/visible spectrum characteristic for an iron-sulfur protein and contained 35 +/- 4 mol Fe, 36 +/- 4 mol acid-labile sulfur, and 1.1 +/- 0.2 mol FAD/mol. The enzyme was specific for phenylglyoxylate (Km 45 microM) and coenzyme A (Km 55 microM); 2-oxoisovalerate was oxidized with 15% of the rate. The turnover number with benzyl viologen at 37 degrees C was 46 s(-1) at the optimal pH of 8. The enzyme catalyzed a NAD(P)H:viologen dye transhydrogenation reaction, NAD(H) being the preferred coenzyme. It also catalyzed an isotope exchange between CO2 and the carboxyl group of the substrate. The data are consistent with the following hypothesis. The enzyme complex consists of a core enzyme of four subunits with the composition alpha2 beta2 gamma2 delta2, as reported for archaeal 2-oxoacid:ferredoxin oxidoreductases; this complex is able to reduce viologen dyes. The holoenzyme contains in addition an epsilon2 unit that catalyzes the transfer of electrons from a small ferredoxin-like subunit of the core complex to NAD+; this unit also catalyzes the transhydrogenase reaction, carries FAD and resembles ferredoxin:NAD(P)+-oxidoreductase.

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