A 1-deoxy-D-xylulose 5-phosphate reductoisomerase catalyzing the formation of 2-C-methyl-D-erythritol 4-phosphate in an alternative nonmevalonate pathway for terpenoid biosynthesis

Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America
S TakahashiH Seto


Several eubacteria including Esherichia coli use an alternative nonmevalonate pathway for the biosynthesis of isopentenyl diphosphate instead of the ubiquitous mevalonate pathway. In the alternative pathway, 2-C-methyl-D-erythritol or its 4-phosphate, which is proposed to be formed from 1-deoxy-D-xylulose 5-phosphate via intramolecular rearrangement followed by reduction process, is one of the biosynthetic precursors of isopentenyl diphosphate. To clone the gene(s) responsible for synthesis of 2-C-methyl-D-erythritol 4-phosphate, we prepared and selected E. coli mutants with an obligatory requirement for 2-C-methylerythritol for growth and survival. All the DNA fragments that complemented the defect in synthesizing 2-C-methyl-D-erythritol 4-phosphate of these mutants contained the yaeM gene, which is located at 4.2 min on the chromosomal map of E. coli. The gene product showed significant homologies to hypothetical proteins with unknown functions present in Haemophilus influenzae, Synechocystis sp. PCC6803, Mycobacterium tuberculosis, Helicobacter pyroli, and Bacillus subtilis. The purified recombinant yaeM gene product was overexpressed in E. coli and found to catalyze the formation of 2-C-methyl-D-erythritol 4-phosphate from ...Continue Reading


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