Mg-chelatase catalyzes the insertion of Mg into protoporphyrin and lies at the branchpoint of heme and (bacterio)chlorophyll synthesis. In prokaryotes, three genes – BchI, D and H – encode subunits for Mg-chelatase. In higher plants, homologous cDNAs for the I, D and H subunits have been characterized. Since the N-terminal half of the D subunit is homologous to the I subunit, the C-terminal portion of the pea D was used for antigen production. The antibody recognized the chloroplast D subunit and was used to demonstrate that this subunit associated with the membranes in the presence of MgCl2. The antibody immunoprecipitated the native protein and inhibited Mg-chelatase activity. Expression in Escherichia coli with a construct for the full-length protein (minus the putative transit peptide) resulted in induction of 24.5 kDa (major) and 89 kDa (minor) proteins which could only be solubilized in 6 M urea. However, when host cells were co-transformed with expression vectors for the full-length D subunit and for the 70 kDa HSP chaperonin protein, a substantial portion of the 89 kDa protein was expressed in a soluble form which was active in a Mg-chelatase reconstitution assay.
Plant Molecular Biology – Springer Journals
Published: Oct 16, 2004
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