NADP-malic enzyme from plants: a ubiquitous enzyme involved in different metabolic pathways

FEBS Lett. 2001 Feb 9;490(1-2):1-6. doi: 10.1016/s0014-5793(00)02331-0.


NADP-malic enzyme (NADP-ME) is a widely distributed enzyme that catalyzes the oxidative decarboxylation of L-malate. Photosynthetic NADP-MEs are found in C4 bundle sheath chloroplasts and in the cytosol of CAM plants, while non-photosynthetic NADP-MEs are either plastidic or cytosolic in various plants. We propose a classification of plant NADP-MEs based on their physiological function and localization and we describe recent advances in the characterization of each isoform. Based on the alignment of amino acid sequences of plant NADP-MEs, we identify putative binding sites for the substrates and analyze the phylogenetic origin of each isoform, revealing several features of the molecular evolution of this ubiquitous enzyme.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Amino Acid Sequence
  • Binding Sites
  • Evolution, Molecular
  • Kinetics
  • Malate Dehydrogenase / chemistry*
  • Malate Dehydrogenase / classification
  • Molecular Sequence Data
  • Phylogeny
  • Plants / enzymology*
  • Protein Isoforms


  • Protein Isoforms
  • Malate Dehydrogenase
  • malate dehydrogenase (oxaloacetate-decarboxylating) (NADP+)