Purification, kinetic properties, and cDNA cloning of mammalian betaine- homocysteine methyltransferase

Timothy A. Garrow

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Porcine liver betaine-homocysteine methyltransforuse (BHMT; EC was purified to homogeneity, and the Michaelis constants for betaine, dimethylacetothetin, and L-homocysteine are 23, 155, and 32 μM, respectively. The maximum rate of catalysis is 47-fold greater using dimethylacetothetin as a methyl donor compared with betaine. Partial amino acid sequence of porcine BHMT was obtained, and inosine-containing redundant oligonucleotide primers were used to amplify an 815-base pair sequence of the porcine cDNA by polymerase chain reaction (PCR). Nondegenerate oligonucleotide primers based on the porcine cDNA were synthesized and used to isolate a 463-base pair fragment of the human cDNA by PCR. The human PCR DNA product was then used to screen a cDNA library by plaque hybridization, and cDNAs encoding human BHMT were isolated. The primary structure of the human cDNA is reported here, and the open reading frame encodes a 406- residue protein of M(r) 44,969. The deduced amino acid sequence of human BHMT shows limited homology to bacterial vitamin B12-dependent methionine synthases (EC A plasmid containing the human BHMT cDNA fused in frame to the N terminus of β-galactosidase was transformed into Escherichia coli, and transformants expressed BHMT activity, an activity that is absent from wild type E. coli.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)22831-22838
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of Biological Chemistry
Issue number37
StatePublished - 1996

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biochemistry
  • Molecular Biology
  • Cell Biology


Dive into the research topics of 'Purification, kinetic properties, and cDNA cloning of mammalian betaine- homocysteine methyltransferase'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this