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The Journal of biological chemistry

Biosynthesis of the diterpene verrucosan-2beta-ol in the phototrophic eubacterium Chloroflexus aurantiacus. A retrobiosynthetic NMR study.


PMID 9660767

Abstract

The biosynthesis of verrucosan-2beta-ol in the green phototrophic eubacterium Chloroflexus aurantiacus was investigated by in vivo incorporation of singly or doubly 13C-labeled acetate. The 13C labeling of the isolated diterpene was analyzed by one- and two-dimensional NMR spectroscopy. The 13C-labeling patterns of verrucosan-2beta-ol were compared with the labeling patterns of intermediary metabolites (acetyl-CoA, pyruvate, and glyceraldehyde 3-phosphate) which were deduced from amino acids and nucleosides by retrobiosynthetic analysis. The results show that verrucosan-2beta-ol is synthesized via mevalonate and not via the deoxyxylulose pathway, which was discovered recently in some eubacteria, algae, and plants. A scheme for the formation of the unusual tetracyclic ring system is offered. The cyclization process is initiated by the solvolysis of pyrophosphate from geranyllinaloyl pyrophosphate and the mechanism involves a Wagner-Meerwein rearrangement, a 1,5-hydride shift, and a cyclopropylcarbinyl to cyclopropylcarbinyl rearrangement.

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