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

ATPase activity of biotin carboxylase provides evidence for initial activation of HCO3- by ATP in the carboxylation of biotin.

When we incubated biotin carboxylase from Escherichia coli with ATP in absence of biotin we observed HCO3- -dependent ATP hydrolysis, which was activated by 10% ethanol in the same proportion as the activity of D-biotin carboxylation assayed in the presence of biotin. The two activities exhibited identical heat stability and were protected equally by glycerol; both required Mg2+ and K+ and showed similar dependency on the concentration of ATP. Biotin assay excluded potential contamination by traces of biotin as a cause of the observed ATP hydrolysis, and this was confirmed by the findings that carboxybiotin did not accumulate and that avidin was uninhibitory. Therefore we concluded that this HCO3- -dependent ATPase was genuinely a partial activity of biotin carboxylase. This partial activity supports a sequential mechanism for enzymatic carboxylation of biotin in which HCO3- is activated by ATP in a first step. It is consistent with the initial formation of the carbonic-phosphoric anhydride (HOCO2PO3(2-)), and it does not agree with models where biotin is phosphorylated by ATP prior to reaction with HCO3-. It appears that enzymes that use HCO3- for carboxylation, including biotin-dependent carboxylases, phosphoenolpyruvate carboxylase, and carbamoyl phosphate synthetase, activate HCO3- by a common mechanism involving the initial formation of the carbonic-phosphoric anhydride.[1]


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