Phosphoribosylamidotransferase, the first enzyme for purine de novo synthesis, is required for conidiation in the sclerotial mycoparasite Coniothyrium minitans.
The Bacillus subtilis gene encoding glutamine phosphoribosylpyrophosphate amidotransferase (amidophosphoribosyltransferase) was cloned in pBR322. This gene is designated purF by analogy with the corresponding gene in Escherichia coli. B. subtilis purF was expressed in E. coli from a plasmid promoter. The plasmid-encoded enzyme was functional in vivo and complemented an E. coli purF mutant strain. The nucleotide sequence of a 1651-base pair B. subtilis DNA fragment was determined, thus localizing the 1428-base pair structural gene. A primary translation product of 476 amino acid residues was deduced from the DNA sequence. Comparison with the previously determined NH2-terminal amino acid sequence indicates that 11 residues are proteolytically removed from the NH2 terminus, leaving a protein chain of 465 residues having an NH2-terminal active site cysteine residue. Plasmid-encoded B. subtilis amidophosphoribosyltransferase was purified from E. coli cells and compared to the enzymes from B. subtilis and E. coli. The plasmid-encoded enzyme was similar in properties to amidophosphoribosyltransferase obtained from B. subtilis. Enzyme specific activity, immunological reactivity, in vitro lability to O2, Fe-S content, and NH2-terminal processing were virtually identical with amidophosphoribosyltransferase purified from B. subtilis. Thus E. coli correctly processed the NH2 terminus and assembled [4Fe-4S] centers in B. subtilis amidophosphoribosyltransferase although it does not perform these maturation steps on its own enzyme. Amino acid sequence comparison indicates that the B. subtilis and E. coli enzymes are homologous. Catalytic and regulatory domains were tentatively identified based on comparison with E. coli amidophosphoribosyltransferase and other phosphoribosyltransferase (Argos, P., Hanei, M., Wilson, J., and Kelley, W. (1983) J. Biol. Chem. 258, 6450-6457).