Retrobiosynthetic nuclear magnetic resonance analysis of amino acid biosynthesis and intermediary metabolism. Metabolic flux in developing maize kernels

E. Glawischnig, A. Gierl, A. Tomas, A. Bacher, W. Eisenreich

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

45 Scopus citations

Abstract

Information on metabolic networks could provide the basis for the design of targets for metabolic engineering. To study metabolic flux in cereals, developing maize (Zea mays) kernels were grown in sterile culture on medium containing [U-13C6]glucose or [1,2-13C2]acetate. After growth, amino acids, lipids, and sitosterol were isolated from kernels as well as from the cobs, and their 13C isotopomer compositions were determined by quantitative nuclear magnetic resonance spectroscopy. The highly specific labeling patterns were used to analyze the metabolic pathways leading to amino acids and the triterpene on a quantitative basis. The data show that serine is generated from phosphoglycerate, as well as from glycine. Lysine is formed entirely via the diaminopimelate pathway and sitosterol is synthesized entirely via the mevalonate route. The labeling data of amino acids and sitosterol were used to reconstruct the labeling patterns of key metabolic intermediates (e.g. acetyl-coenzyme A, pyruvate, phosphoenolpyruvate, erythrose 4-phosphate, and Rib 5-phosphate) that revealed quantitative information about carbon flux in the intermediary metabolism of developing maize kernels. Exogenous acetate served as an efficient precursor of sitosterol, as well as of amino acids of the aspartate and glutamate family; in comparison, metabolites formed in the plastidic compartments showed low acetate incorporation.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1178-1186
Number of pages9
JournalPlant Physiology
Volume125
Issue number3
DOIs
StatePublished - 2001

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