|Ikemi, M.; Murakami, K.; Hashimoto, M.; Murooka, Y.
|Cloning and characterization of genes involved in the biosynthesis of delta-aminolevulinic acid in Escherichia coli
|Amino Acid Sequence
|Several mutants of Escherichia coli that had lost their ability to synthesize delta-aminolevulinic acid (ALA) via the C5 pathway were isolated. Their defective loci were classified into two groups, AlaA- and AlaB-. The genes that complemented these mutations were cloned. Nucleotide sequencing indicated that the gene that complemented AlaA- was identical to hemL which is located at 4 min on the E. coli chromosome and encodes glutamate 1-semialdehyde aminotransferase. The gene complementing AlaB- contained an open reading frame (ORF) encoding a polypeptide of 207 amino acids that was found to be a new gene involved in the synthesis of ALA via the C5 pathway. Thus, we designated the gene hemM. The hemM gene was adjacent to hemA that is located at 27 min and previously thought to encode glutamyl-tRNA dehydrogenase. However, we found that hemA complemented both the AlaA- (hemL) and AlaB- (hemM) mutants defective in the C5 pathway although the transformants showed small colonies on the selective medium without ALA. These results suggest that hemA is not involved in the C5 pathway, but controls a second, minor pathway for the synthesis of ALA.