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Quantitative Estimation of Channeling in the Gycolytic Pathway in Intact Escherichia coli

Jennifer C. Lee, Washington University in St Louis

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Faculty Mentor: Daniel H. Kohl

Channeling is the preference of an enzyme for intermediates within a pathway over the same intermediates in the cell’s cytoplasm. The importance of this phenomenon stems from its proposed role in reg- ulating metabolism and in allowing a cell to function with limited cel- lular resources. This study is a quantitative examination of channeling in vivo using intact Escherichia coli, an often used model bacterium. In E. coli, enzyme interaction was examined in the glycolytic pathway. A high degree of channeling was found in the seven reactions from fructose-1,6-bisphosphate (F1,6P2) to pyruvate and then on to CO2. This contrasts with the non-significant channeling found from fruc- tose-6-phosphate (F6P) to CO2. The F1,6P2 result is surprising, since detection of channeling in this protocol requires each downstream step of the pathway to preserve channeling and not equilibrate with the cell’s cytoplasm.

From the Washington University Undergraduate Research Digest: WUURD, Volume 2, Issue 1, Fall 2006. Published by the Office of Undergraduate Research.

Henry Biggs, Director of Undergraduate Research and Associate Dean in the College of Arts & Sciences; Joy Zalis Kiefer, Undergraduate Research Coordinator, Editor, and Assistant Dean in the College of Arts & Sciences.