Analysis of gene islands involved in methanopterin-linked C1 transfer reactions reveals new functions and provides evolutionary insights

Marina G. Kalyuzhnaya, Natalia Korotkova, Gregory Crowther, Christopher J. Marx, Mary E. Lidstrom, Ludmila Chistoserdova

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

41 Scopus citations

Abstract

In this study, the occurrence and chromosomal clustering of genes encoding C1 transfer reactions linked to tetrahydromethanopterin (H4MPT) were analyzed in a variety of proteobacteria and in representatives of the Planctomycetes via genomic analysis or via partial sequencing by cosmid walking. Although a tendency for clustering was found common for the genes of interest, significant variations in gene order and the degree of clustering were uncovered both between and within different groups of Proteobacteria and between Proteobacteria and Planctomycetes. Phylogenetic analyses suggested that the evolution of genes encoding H4MPT-linked reactions in Proteobacteria involved lateral transfers within Proteobacteria and possibly between Proteobacteria and other phyla. Gene cluster comparisons revealed a number of novel genes potentially involved in the C1 transfer reactions, and these were analyzed by mutation and expression analyses. Four genes, a homolog of pabB, and three genes conserved between methanogenic Archaea and Bacteria possessing H4MPT-linked functions, orfY, orf1, and afpA were shown to be involved in formaldehyde oxidation/detoxification, as judged by specific mutant phenotypes. In particular, pabB contributes to the biosynthesis of para-aminobenzoic acid, a precursor of both tetrahydrofolate and H 4MPT, and afpA apparently encodes a novel dihydromethanopterin reductase, based on mutant complementation experiments.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)4607-4614
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of Bacteriology
Volume187
Issue number13
DOIs
StatePublished - Jul 2005

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Microbiology
  • Molecular Biology

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