Proteins of the Glycine Decarboxylase Complex in the Hydrogenosome ofTrichomonas vaginalis Academic Article uri icon

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abstract

  • Trichomonas vaginalisis a unicellular eukaryote that lacks mitochondria and contains a specialized organelle, the hydrogenosome, involved in carbohydrate metabolism and iron-sulfur cluster assembly. We report the identification of two glycine cleavage H proteins and a dihydrolipoamide dehydrogenase (L protein) of the glycine decarboxylase complex inT. vaginaliswith predicted N-terminal hydrogenosomal presequences. Immunofluorescence analyses reveal that both H and L proteins are localized in hydrogenosomes, providing the first evidence for amino acid metabolism in this organelle. All three proteins were expressed inEscherichia coliand purified to homogeneity. The experimentalKmof L protein for the two H proteins were 2.6 μM and 3.7 μM, consistent with both H proteins serving as substrates of L protein. Analyses using purified hydrogenosomes showed that endogenous H proteins exist as monomers and endogenous L protein as a homodimer in their native states. Phylogenetic analyses of L proteins revealed that theT. vaginalishomologue shares a common ancestry with dihydrolipoamide dehydrogenases from the firmicute bacteria, indicating its acquisition via a horizontal gene transfer event independent of the origins of mitochondria and hydrogenosomes.

publication date

  • December 2006

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