Ralstonia sp. strain U2 metabolizes naphthalene via gentisate (2,5-dihydroxybenzoate) to central metabolites, but it was found unable to utilize gentisate as growth substrate. A putative gentisate transporter encoded by ncg12922 from Corynebacterium glutamicum ATCC 13032 was functionally expressed in Ralstonia sp. strain U2, converting strain U2 to a gentisate utilizer. After ncg12922 was inserted into plasmid pGFPe with green fluorescence protein gene gfp, the expressed fusion protein Ncg12922-GFP could be visualized in the periphery of Escherichia coli cells under confocal microscope, consistent with a cytoplasmic membrane location. In contrast, GFP was ubiquitous in the cytoplasm of E. coli cells carrying pGFPe only. Gentisate 1,2-dioxygenase activity was present in the cell extract from strain U2 induced with gentisate but at a much lower level (one-fifth) than that obtained with salicylate. However, it exhibited a similar level in strain U2 containing Ncg12922 induced either by salicylate or gentisate.