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Hoffmann, R. A wiki for the life sciences where authorship matters. Nature Genetics (2008)

Tyrosine codon corresponds to topa quinone at the active site of copper amine oxidases.

The recently discovered organic cofactor of bovine serum amine oxidase, topa quinone, is an uncommon amino acid residue in the polypeptide backbone (Janes, S. M., Mu, D., Wemmer, D., Smith, A. J., Kaur, S., Maltby, D., Burlingame, A. L., and Klinman, J. P. (1990) Science 248, 981-987). The amine oxidase gene from the yeast Hansenula polymorpha has been cloned and sequenced (Bruinenberg, P. G., Evers, M., Waterham, H. R., Kuipers, J., Arnberg, A. C., and Geert, A. B. (1989) Biochim. Biophys. Acta 1008, 157-167). In order to understand the incorporation of topa quinone in eukaryotes, we have isolated yeast amine oxidase from H. polymorpha. Following protocols established with bovine serum amine oxidase, yeast amine oxidase was derivatized with [14C]phenylhydrazine, followed by thermolytic digestion and isolation of a dominant radiolabeled peptide by high pressure liquid chromatography. Comparison of resonance Raman spectra for this peptide to spectra of a model compound demonstrates that topa quinone is the cofactor. By alignment of a DNA-derived yeast amine oxidase sequence with the topa quinone-containing peptide sequence, it is found that the tyrosine codon, UAC, corresponds to topa quinone in the mature protein. In a similar manner, alignment of a tryptic peptide from bovine serum amine oxidase implicates tyrosine as the precursor to topa quinone in mammals.[1]


  1. Tyrosine codon corresponds to topa quinone at the active site of copper amine oxidases. Mu, D., Janes, S.M., Smith, A.J., Brown, D.E., Dooley, D.M., Klinman, J.P. J. Biol. Chem. (1992) [Pubmed]
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