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5′-Adenylylsulfate (APS) reductase was characterized in diverse marine algae. A cDNA encoding APS reductase from Enteromorpha intestinalis (EAPR) was cloned by functional complementation of an Escherichia coli cysH mutant. The deduced amino acid sequence shows high homology with APS reductase (APR) from flowering plants. Based on the probable transit peptide cleavage site the mature protein is 45.7 kD. EAPR expressed as a His-tagged recombinant protein catalyzes reduced glutathione-dependent reduction of APS to sulfite, exhibiting a specific activity of approximately 40 μmol min−1 mg protein−1 and Michealis-Menten kinetic constants of approximately 1.4 mm for reduced glutathione and approximately 6.5 μm for APS. APR activity and expression were studied in relation to the production of 3-dimethylsulfoniopropionate (DMSP), a sulfonium compound produced by many marine algae. A diverse group of DMSP-producing species showed extremely high enzyme activity (up to 400 times that found in flowering plants). Antibodies raised against a conserved peptide of APR strongly cross-reacted with a protein of 45 kD in several chlorophytes but insignificantly with chromophytes. In the chlorophyte Tetraselmis sp., APR activity varies significantly during the culture cycle and does not follow the changes in cellular DMSP content. However, a positive correlation was found between cell-based APR activity and specific growth rate.
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