5-Hydroxypicolinic acid (5HPA), a natural pyridine derivative, is microbially degraded in the environment. However, the physiological, biochemical, and genetic foundations of the 5HPA metabolism remain unknown. In this study, an operon (hpa), responsible for 5HPA degradation, was cloned from Alcaligenes faecalis JQ135. HpaM was a monocomponent FAD-dependent monooxygenase and shared low identity (only 28-31%) with reported monooxygenases. HpaM catalyzed the ortho decarboxylative hydroxylation of 5HPA, generating 2,5-dihydroxypyridine (2,5DHP). The monooxygenase activity of HpaM was FAD and NADH-dependent. The apparent Km values of HpaM for 5HPA and NADH were 45.4 µM and 37.8 µM, respectively. The genes hpaX, hpaD, and hpaF were found to encode 2,5DHP dioxygenase, N-formylmaleamic acid deformylase, and maleamate amidohydrolase, respectively; however, the three genes were not essential for 5HPA degradation in A. faecalis JQ135. Furthermore, the gene maiA, which encodes a maleic acid cis-trans isomerase, was essential for the metabolism of 5HPA, nicotinic acid, and picolinic acid in A. faecalis JQ135, indicating that it might be a key gene in the metabolism of pyridine derivatives. The genes and proteins identified in this study showed a novel degradation mechanism of pyridine derivatives.Importance Unlike the benzene ring, the uneven distribution of the electron density of pyridine ring influences the positional reactivity and the interaction with enzymes, e.g., the ortho and para oxidation are more difficult than the meta oxidations. Hydroxylation is an important oxidation process for the pyridine derivative metabolism. In previous reports, the ortho hydroxylation of pyridine derivatives were catalyzed by multicomponent molybdenum-containing monooxygenases, while the meta hydroxylations were catalyzed by monocomponent FAD-dependent monooxygenases. This study identified the new monocomponent FAD-dependent monooxygenase HpaM that catalyzed the ortho decarboxylative hydroxylation of 5HPA. In addition, we found that the maiA coding for maleic acid cis-trans isomerase was pivotal for the metabolism of 5HPA, nicotinic acid, and picolinic acid in A. faecalis JQ135. This study provides novel insights into the microbial metabolism of pyridine derivatives. Copyright © 2018 American Society for Microbiology.
Journal: Applied and environmental microbiology