The anaerobic parasitic protozoa Tritrichomonas foetus is found incapable of de novo pyrimidine biosynthesis by its failure to incorporate bicarbonate, aspartate, or orotate into pyrimidine nucleotides or nucleic acids. Uracil phosphoribosyltransferase in the cytoplasm provides the major pyrimidine salvage for the parasite. Exogenous uridine and cytidine are mostly converted to uracil by uridine phosphorylase and cytidine deaminase in T. foetus prior to incorporation. T. foetus cannot incorporate labels from exogenous uracil or uridine into DNA; it has not detectable dihydrofolate reductase or thymidylate synthetase and is resistant to methotrexate, pyrimethamine, trimethoprim, and 5-bromovinyldeoxyuridine at millimolar concentrations. It has an enzyme thymidine phosphotransferase in cellular fraction pelleting at 100,000 x g that can convert exogenous thymidine to TMP via a phosphate donor such as p-nitrophenyl phosphate or nucleoside 5'-monophosphate. Thymidine salvage in T. foetus is thus totally dissociated from other pyrimidine salvage.
|Number of pages
|Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America
|Published - 1983
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