A new mode of ring cleavage of 2,3-dihydroxybenzoic acid in Tecoma stans (L.). Partial purification and properties of 2,3-dihydroxybenzoate 2,3-oxygenase

Eur J Biochem. 1975 Aug 1;56(1):163-71. doi: 10.1111/j.1432-1033.1975.tb02219.x.


2,3-Dihydroxybenzoic acid has been shown to be oxidized via the 3-oxoadipate pathway in the leaves of Tecoma stans. The formation of 2-carboxy-cis,cis-muconic acid, a muconolactone, 3-oxoadipic acid and carbon dioxide during its metabolism has been demonstrated using an extract of Tecoma leaves. The first reaction of the pathway, viz., the conversion of 2,3-dihydroxybenzoate to 2-carboxy-cis,cis-muconic acid has been shown to be catalysed by an enzyme designated as 2,3-dihydroxybenzoate 2,3-oxygenase. The enzyme has been partially purified and a few of its properties studied. The enzyme is very labile with a half-life of 3--4 h. It is maximally active with 2,3-dihydroxybenzoate as the substrate and does not exhibit any activity with catechol, 4-methyl catechol, 3,4-dihydroxybenzoic acid, etc. However, 2,3-dihydroxy-p-toluate and 2,3-dihydroxy-p-cumate are also oxidized by the enzyme by about 38% and 28% respectively, compared to 2,3-dihydroxybenzoate. Sulfhydryl reagents inhibit the enzyme reaction and the inhibition can be prevented by preincubation of the enzyme with the substrate. Substrate also affords protection to the enzyme against thermal inactivation. Sulfhydryl compounds strongly inhibit the reaction and the inhibition cannot be prevented by preincubation of the enzyme with its substrates. Data on the effect of metal ions as well as metal chelating agents suggest that copper is the metal cofactor of the enzyme. Evidence is presented which suggests that iron may not be participating in the overall catalytic mechanism.

MeSH terms

  • Cations, Divalent
  • Cations, Monovalent
  • Chelating Agents / pharmacology
  • Copper / pharmacology
  • Drug Stability
  • Hot Temperature
  • Hydroxybenzoates / metabolism*
  • Oxygen Consumption
  • Oxygenases / isolation & purification
  • Oxygenases / metabolism*
  • Plants / enzymology*
  • Spectrophotometry, Ultraviolet
  • Sulfhydryl Compounds / pharmacology
  • Sulfhydryl Reagents / pharmacology


  • Cations, Divalent
  • Cations, Monovalent
  • Chelating Agents
  • Hydroxybenzoates
  • Sulfhydryl Compounds
  • Sulfhydryl Reagents
  • Copper
  • Oxygenases