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

Molecular cloning and functional expression of human 3-hydroxyanthranilic-acid dioxygenase.

Increased cerebral levels of the endogenous excitotoxin quinolinic acid (QUIN) have been speculatively linked to neuronal damage following neurological and inflammatory disorders. 3-Hydroxyanthranilic-acid dioxygenase ( 3-HAO; 3-hydroxyanthranilate 3,4-dioxygenase, EC is the enzyme that catalyzes the synthesis of QUIN from 3-hydroxyanthranilic acid, and evidence suggests that it could play a role in disorders associated with altered tissue levels of QUIN. In this report, we describe the isolation of a full-length cDNA clone encoding human 3-HAO (h3-HAO). Degenerate oligonucleotides were designed from the amino acid sequences of tryptic peptides of rat liver 3-HAO, and they were used as primers for reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction of rat liver RNA. The resulting rat cDNA product was used to screen a human hepatoma cell line (HepG2) cDNA library and to isolate a human 3-HAO cDNA clone. This clone was found to have an insert of 1276 nucleotides. The deduced primary structure of h3-HAO is composed of 286 amino acid residues with a predicted molecular mass of approximately 32.6 kDa. The human sequence exhibits high similarity (94%) to the rat partial amino acid sequence deduced from the rat reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction fragment. Insertion of the h3-HAO coding sequence into a eukaryotic expression vector yielded relatively high amounts of the active enzyme in human embryonic kidney HEK-293 cells. The Km value of 3-HANA for recombinant h3-HAO (approximately 2 microM) was in good agreement with that reported for the native enzyme. Immunoblot analysis of recombinant h3-HAO revealed a polypeptide with an apparent molecular mass of 32 kDa, as predicted from the deduced amino acid sequence. RNA blot analysis of human liver and HepG2 cells revealed one major species of h3-HAO mRNA of approximately 1.3 kilobases.[1]


  1. Molecular cloning and functional expression of human 3-hydroxyanthranilic-acid dioxygenase. Malherbe, P., Köhler, C., Da Prada, M., Lang, G., Kiefer, V., Schwarcz, R., Lahm, H.W., Cesura, A.M. J. Biol. Chem. (1994) [Pubmed]
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