The Final Step of Hygromycin A Biosynthesis, Oxidation of C-5''-Dihydrohygromycin A, Is Linked to a Putative Proton Gradient-Dependent Efflux

Antimicrob. Agents Ch., 2009, 53(12), 5163-5172, doi:10.1128/AAC.01069-09 published on 12.09.2009
Antimicrobial Agents and Chemotherapy, online article

Hygromycin A (HA) is an aminocyclitol antibiotic produced and excreted by Streptomyces hygroscopicus. Deletion of hyg26 from the hygromycin A biosynthetic gene cluster has previously been shown to result in a mutant that produces 5''-dihydrohygromycin A (DHHA). We report herein on the purification and characterization of Hyg26 expressed in Escherichia coli. The enzyme catalyzes an NAD(H)-dependent reversible interconversion of HA and DHHA, supporting the role of the reduced HA as the penultimate biosynthetic pathway intermediate and not a shunt product. The equilibrium for the Hyg26-catalyzed reaction heavily favors the DHHA intermediate. The high-titer production of the HA product by S. hygroscopicus must be dependent upon a subsequent energetically favorable enzyme-catalyzed process, such as the selective and efficient export of HA. hyg19 encodes a putative proton gradient-dependent transporter, and a mutant lacking this gene was observed to produce less HA and to produce the DHHA intermediate. The DHHA produced by either the {Delta}hyg19 or the {Delta}hyg26 mutant had slightly reduced activity against E. coli and reduced protein synthesis-inhibitory activity in vitro. The data indicate that Hyg26 and Hyg19 have evolved to produce and export the final potent HA product in a coordinated fashion.

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