Structural comparison of the Pichia pastoris alcohol oxidase genes



In methylotrophic yeasts, alcohol oxidase is the first enzyme in the methanol-utilization pathway. The genome of one such yeast, Pichia pastoris, contains two alcohol oxidase genes, AOX1 and AOX2. Sequence analysis indicated that each gene encodes a similar protein of 663 amino acids. The protein-coding regions of the genes were 92% and 97% homologous at the nucleotide and predicted amino acid sequence levels, respectively. In contrast to homology observed within the protein-coding portions of the AOX genes, no homology was found in either the 5′ or 3′ non-coding regions. Although alcohol oxidase is found in peroxisomes of P. pastoris, the AOX amino acid sequences did not contain a peptide sequence similar to the peroxisomal transport sequence found at the C-terminus of some peroxisomally located proteins in higher eukaryotes.