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Investigation of two evolutionarily unrelated halocarboxylic acid dehalogenase gene families

Hill, Katja E., Marchesi, Julian R. and Weightman, Andrew J. 1999. Investigation of two evolutionarily unrelated halocarboxylic acid dehalogenase gene families. Journal of Bacteriology 181 (9) , pp. 2535-2547. 10.1128/JB.181.8.2535-2547.1999

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Dehalogenases are key enzymes in the metabolism of halo-organic compounds. This paper describes a systematic approach to the isolation and molecular analysis of two families of bacterial α-halocarboxylic acid (αHA) dehalogenase genes, called group I and group II deh genes. The two families are evolutionarily unrelated and together represent almost all of the αHAdeh genes described to date. We report the design and evaluation of degenerate PCR primer pairs for the separate amplification and isolation of group I and II dehgenes. Amino acid sequences derived from 10 of 11 group Ideh partial gene products of new and previously reported bacterial isolates showed conservation of five residues previously identified as essential for activity. The exception, DehD from a Rhizobium sp., had only two of these five residues. Group II deh gene sequences were amplified from 54 newly isolated strains, and seven of these sequences were cloned and fully characterized. Group II dehalogenases were stereoselective, dechlorinating l- but not d-2-chloropropionic acid, and derived amino acid sequences for all of the genes exceptdehII°P11 showed conservation of previously identified essential residues. Molecular analysis of the twodeh families highlighted four subdivisions in each, which were supported by high bootstrap values in phylogenetic trees and by enzyme structure-function considerations. Group Ideh genes included two putative cryptic or silent genes, dehI°PP3 anddehI°17a, produced by different organisms. Group II deh genes included two cryptic genes and an active gene, dehIIPP3, that can be switched off and on. All αHA-degrading bacteria so far described were Proteobacteria, a result that may be explained by limitations either in the host range fordeh genes or in isolation methods.

Item Type: Article
Date Type: Publication
Status: Published
Schools: Biosciences
ISSN: 0021-9193
Date of Acceptance: 23 January 1999
Last Modified: 29 Jul 2022 06:54

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