Chiral Instability at Sulfur of S-Adenosylmethionine

Su Er Wu, William P. Huskey, Ronald T. Borchardt, Richard L. Schowen

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

63 Scopus citations


S-Adenosylmethionine, generated enzymically in chirally pure form (S configuration at sulfur), undergoes simultaneous irreversible conversion to 5′-deoxy-5′-(methylthio)adenosine and homoserine with a rate constant of 6 × 10−6 s−1 at pH 7.5 and 37 °C and reversible conversion to an enzymically inactive stereoisomer (R configuration at sulfur) with a forward rate constant of 8 × 10−6 s−1 at pH 7.5 and 37 °C. These forms of instability require small turnover times and/or stabilization through macromolecular binding for S-adenosylmethionine, if organisms that utilize it are to avoid losses of metabolic energy.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)2828-2832
Number of pages5
Issue number12
StatePublished - 1983
Externally publishedYes

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Biochemistry

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