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Catalytic properties of NAD(P)H:quinone oxidoreductase-2 (NQO2), a dihydronicotinamide riboside dependent oxidoreductase.

Human NAD(P)H:quinone acceptor oxidoreductase-2 (NQO2) has been prepared using an Escherichia coli expression method. NQO2 is thought to be an isoform of DT-diaphorase (EC [also referred to as NAD(P)H:quinone acceptor oxidoreductase] because there is a 49% identity between their amino acid sequences. The present investigation has revealed that like DT-diaphorase, NQO2 is a dimer enzyme with one FAD prosthetic group per subunit. Interestingly, NQO2 uses dihydronicotinamide riboside (NRH) rather than NAD(P)H as an electron donor. It catalyzes a two-electron reduction of quinones and oxidation-reduction dyes. One-electron acceptors, such as potassium ferricyanide, cannot be reduced by NQO2. This enzyme also catalyzes a four-electron reduction, using methyl red as the electron acceptor. The NRH-methyl red reductase activity of NQO2 is 11 times the NADH-methyl red reductase activity of DT-diaphorase. In addition, through a four-electron reduction reaction, NQO2 can catalyze nitroreduction of cytotoxic compound CB 1954 [5-(aziridin-1-yl)-2,4-dinitrobenzamide]. NQO2 is 3000 times more effective than DT-diaphorase in the reduction of CB 1954. Therefore, NQO2 is a NRH-dependent oxidoreductase which catalyzes two- and four-electron reduction reactions. NQO2 is resistant to typical inhibitors of DT-diaphorase, such as dicumarol, Cibacron blue, and phenindone. Flavones are inhibitors of NQO2. However, structural requirements of flavones for the inhibition of NQO2 are different from those for DT-diaphorase. The most potent flavone inhibitor tested so far is quercetin (3,5,7,3',4'-. 6pentahydroxyflavone). It has been found that quercetin is a competitive inhibitor with respect to NRH (Ki = 21 nM). NQO2 is 43 amino acids shorter than DT-diaphorase, and it has been suggested that the carboxyl terminus of DT-diaphorase plays a role in substrate binding (S. Chen et al., Protein Sci. 3, 51-57, 1994). In order to understand better the basis of catalytic differences between NQO2 and DT-diaphorase, a human NQO2 with 43 amino acids from the carboxyl terminus of human DT-diaphorase (i.e., hNQO2-hDT43) has been prepared. hNQO2-hDT43 still uses NRH as an electron donor. In addition, the chimeric enzyme is inhibited by quercetin but not dicumarol. These results suggest that additional region(s) in these enzymes is involved in differentiating NRH from NAD(P)H.

Pubmed ID: 9367528


  • Wu K
  • Knox R
  • Sun XZ
  • Joseph P
  • Jaiswal AK
  • Zhang D
  • Deng PS
  • Chen S


Archives of biochemistry and biophysics

Publication Data

November 15, 1997

Associated Grants

  • Agency: NCI NIH HHS, Id: CA33572
  • Agency: NCI NIH HHS, Id: CA44735
  • Agency: NIEHS NIH HHS, Id: ES07943

Mesh Terms

  • Amino Acid Sequence
  • Aziridines
  • Escherichia coli
  • Humans
  • Molecular Sequence Data
  • NAD(P)H Dehydrogenase (Quinone)
  • Niacinamide
  • Oxidation-Reduction
  • Recombinant Fusion Proteins
  • Recombinant Proteins
  • Sequence Homology, Amino Acid