Four deoxynucleoside kinase activities from Drosophila melanogaster are contained within a single monomeric enzyme, a new multifunctional deoxynucleoside kinase

J Biol Chem. 1998 Feb 13;273(7):3926-31. doi: 10.1074/jbc.273.7.3926.


In mammalian cells, there are three pyrimidine nucleoside salvage enzymes with the capacity to phosphorylate all four deoxynucleosides, the two thymidine kinase isoenzymes, TK1 and TK2, and the deoxycytidine kinase, dCK. TK1 is cell cycle-regulated; TK2 is expressed constitutively and can phosphorylate deoxycytidine to the same extent as thymidine. dCK phosphorylates deoxycytidine, deoxyadenosine, and deoxyguanosine, but not thymidine. In addition, the three kinases can phosphorylate a number of medically important analogs. In cultured Drosophila melanogaster embryonic cells, only one pyrimidine deoxynucleoside kinase was present. This kinase was purified and showed a broad substrate specificity, since it was able to phosphorylate all four deoxynucleosides with high efficiency, as compared with the kinases in mammalian cells. Additionally, a number of nucleoside analogs such as arabinofuranosyl pyrimidines, deoxyuridine, and 5'-fluorodeoxyuridine, were phosphorylated. There was negligible 3'-azidothymidine and no dTMP phosphorylation. The enzyme was active as a monomer of about 30 kDa. We suggest the name D. melanogaster deoxynucleoside kinase for this multifunctional kinase. The substrate specificity, size, and other characteristics show that this enzyme is more related to human TK2 than to the other mammalian deoxyribonucleoside kinases, but is unique with respect to the capacity to phosphorylate all four deoxynucleosides.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Binding, Competitive
  • Cells, Cultured
  • Deoxyadenosines / metabolism
  • Deoxycytidine / metabolism
  • Deoxyguanosine / metabolism
  • Drosophila melanogaster / embryology
  • Drosophila melanogaster / enzymology*
  • Kinetics
  • Phosphorylation
  • Phosphotransferases (Alcohol Group Acceptor) / isolation & purification
  • Phosphotransferases (Alcohol Group Acceptor) / metabolism*
  • Substrate Specificity
  • Thymidine / metabolism


  • Deoxyadenosines
  • Deoxycytidine
  • Phosphotransferases (Alcohol Group Acceptor)
  • deoxyribonucleoside kinases
  • Deoxyguanosine
  • Thymidine