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

The plastid ndh genes code for an NADH-specific dehydrogenase: isolation of a complex I analogue from pea thylakoid membranes.

The plastid genomes of several plants contain ndh genes-homologues of genes encoding subunits of the proton-pumping NADH:ubiquinone oxidoreductase, or complex I, involved in respiration in mitochondria and eubacteria. From sequence similarities with these genes, the ndh gene products have been suggested to form a large protein complex (Ndh complex); however, the structure and function of this complex remains to be established. Herein we report the isolation of the Ndh complex from the chloroplasts of the higher plant Pisum sativum. The purification procedure involved selective solubilization of the thylakoid membrane with dodecyl maltoside, followed by two anion-exchange chromatography steps and one size-exclusion chromatography step. The isolated Ndh complex has an apparent total molecular mass of approximately 550 kDa and according to SDS/PAGE consists of at least 16 subunits including NdhA, NdhI, NdhJ, NdhK, and NdhH, which were identified by N-terminal sequencing and immunoblotting. The Ndh complex showed an NADH- and deamino-NADH-specific dehydrogenase activity, characteristic of complex I, when either ferricyanide or the quinones menadione and duroquinone were used as electron acceptors. This study describes the isolation of the chloroplast analogue of the respiratory complex I and provides direct evidence for the function of the plastid Ndh complex as an NADH:plastoquinone oxidoreductase. Our results are compatible with a dual role for the Ndh complex in the chlororespiratory and cyclic photophosphorylation pathways.[1]


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