Sequence analysis and overexpression of the Zymomonas mobilis tgt gene encoding tRNA-guanine transglycosylase: purification and biochemical characterization of the enzyme

J Bacteriol. 1995 Sep;177(18):5284-8. doi: 10.1128/jb.177.18.5284-5288.1995.


tRNA-guanine transglycosylase (Tgt) is involved in the biosynthesis of the hypermodified tRNA nucleoside queuosine (Q). It catalyzes the posttranscriptional base exchange of the Q precursor 7-aminomethyl-7-deazaguanine (preQ1) with the genetically encoded guanine in the anticodon of tRNA(Asp), tRNA(Asn), tRNA(His), and tRNA(Tyr). A partially sequenced gene upstream of the DNA ligase (lig) gene of the Zymomonas mobilis chromosome shows strong homology to the tgt gene of Escherichia coli (K.B. Shark and T. Conway, FEMS Microbiol. Lett. 96:19-26, 1992). We showed that this gene is able to complement the tgt mutation in E. coli SJ1505, and we determined its complete sequence. Four start codons were possible for this gene, resulting in proteins of 386 to 399 amino acids (M(r), 42,800 to 44,300) showing 60.4% sequence identity with Tgt from E. coli. The smallest of the four possible reading frames, which was still extended at its 5' end compared with the E. coli tgt gene, was overexpressed in E. coli. The gene product was purified to homogeneity and was biochemically characterized. The kinetical parameters were virtually identical to those published for the E. coli enzyme. In contrast to E. coli Tgt, which is reported to be a homotrimer, Z. mobilis Tgt was found to be a monomer according to gel filtration. In this study, it was shown that the formation of homotrimers by the E. coli enzyme is readily reversible and is dependent on protein concentration.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Amino Acid Sequence
  • Base Sequence
  • Cloning, Molecular
  • Codon, Initiator / genetics
  • DNA Ligases / genetics
  • Escherichia coli / genetics
  • Genes, Bacterial / genetics*
  • Genetic Complementation Test
  • Molecular Sequence Data
  • Molecular Weight
  • Pentosyltransferases* / chemistry
  • Pentosyltransferases* / isolation & purification
  • Pentosyltransferases* / physiology
  • Protein Conformation
  • Sequence Alignment
  • Sequence Analysis, DNA
  • Sequence Homology, Amino Acid
  • Zymomonas / enzymology*
  • Zymomonas / genetics


  • Codon, Initiator
  • Pentosyltransferases
  • queuine tRNA-ribosyltransferase
  • DNA Ligases

Associated data

  • GENBANK/L33777