Nitrilase enzymes and their role in plant-microbe interactions.
Bottom Line: In the context of plant-microbe interactions they may have roles in hormone synthesis, nutrient assimilation and detoxification of exogenous and endogenous nitriles.Nitrilases are produced by both plant pathogenic and plant growth-promoting microorganisms, and their activities may have a significant impact on the outcome of plant-microbe interactions.In this paper we review current knowledge of the role of nitriles and nitrilases in plants and plant-associated microorganisms, and discuss how greater understanding of the natural functions of nitrilases could be applied to benefit both industry and agriculture.
Affiliation: Department of Plant Sciences, University of Oxford, South Parks Road, Oxford, OX1 3RB, UK.Show MeSH
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Mentions: The nitrilase superfamily, also referred to as the CN‐hydrolases, is comprised of enzymes that catalyse the hydrolysis of non‐peptide carbon–nitrogen bonds. Members of the superfamily are divided into 13 branches according to sequence identity and catalytic activity. These branches include the aliphatic amidase, N‐terminal amidase, biotinidase, carbamylase and nitrilase branches, among others (Pace and Brenner, 2001). Nitrilases are perhaps the best characterized of all members of the superfamily with numerous examples identified across kingdoms (O'Reilly and Turner, 2003). These enzymes hydrolyse the CN group of a nitrile compound resulting in the synthesis of the corresponding carboxylic acid and the release of ammonia. The reaction catalysed by nitrilases is shown in Fig. 1. The nitrilase branch also contains the closely related cyanide hydratase and cyanide dihydratase enzymes. Cyanide hydratase enzymes preferentially hydrolyse cyanide to formamide while cyanide dihydratase enzymes specifically hydrolyse cyanide to formic acid and ammonia (O'Reilly and Turner, 2003; Singh et al., 2006).
Affiliation: Department of Plant Sciences, University of Oxford, South Parks Road, Oxford, OX1 3RB, UK.