The biosynthetic pathway for lipoic acid is present in plastids and mitochondria in Arabidopsis thaliana

FEBS Lett. 2002 Apr 24;517(1-3):110-4. doi: 10.1016/s0014-5793(02)02589-9.


In eukaryotes, the biosynthetic pathway for lipoic acid is present in mitochondria. However, it has been hypothesized that, in plants, the biosynthetic pathway is present in plastids in addition to mitochondria. In this study, Arabidopsis thaliana LIP1p cDNA for a plastidial form of lipoic acid synthase has been identified. We show that it encodes a lipoic acid synthase by demonstrating its ability to complement an Escherichia coli mutant lacking lipoic acid synthase activity. We also show that LIP1p is targeted to chloroplasts. These findings suggest that the biosynthetic pathway for lipoic acid is present not only in mitochondria but also in plastids.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Amino Acid Sequence
  • Arabidopsis / genetics
  • Arabidopsis / metabolism*
  • DNA, Complementary
  • Escherichia coli / genetics
  • Mitochondria / enzymology
  • Mitochondria / metabolism*
  • Molecular Sequence Data
  • Plastids / enzymology
  • Plastids / metabolism*
  • Sequence Homology, Amino Acid
  • Subcellular Fractions / enzymology
  • Sulfurtransferases / genetics
  • Sulfurtransferases / metabolism
  • Thioctic Acid / biosynthesis*
  • Thioctic Acid / metabolism


  • DNA, Complementary
  • Thioctic Acid
  • Sulfurtransferases
  • lipoic acid synthase

Associated data

  • GENBANK/AB073745