IUBMB Enzyme Nomenclature


Accepted name: methoxylated aromatic compound—corrinoid protein Co-methyltransferase

Reaction: a methoxylated aromatic compound + a [Co(I) methoxylated-aromatic-compound-specific corrinoid protein] = a [methyl-Co(III) methoxylated-aromatic-compound-specific corrinoid protein] + a phenol

Other name(s): mtoB (gene name); mtvB (gene name); vdmB (gene name)

Systematic name: methoxylated aromatic compound:cobamide Co-methyltransferase

Comments: This entry stands for a family of enzymes that have been characterized from acetogenic bacteria and archaeal species. Different members of this family have different substrate specificity. In the methanogenic archaeon Methermicoccus shengliensis the enzyme participates in methanogenesis from methoxylated aromatic compounds, while in acetogenic bacteria and in non-methanogenic archaea it participates in methoxydotrophic growth. Most of the enzymes have a wide specificity and were shown to act on a large number of methoxylated aromatic compounds, carrying a methoxy group at positions 2, 3 or 4 of the aromatic ring. Methylation of the corrinoid protein requires the central cobalt to be in the Co(I) state; during methylation the cobalt is oxidized to the Co(III) state.

Links to other databases: BRENDA, EXPASY, KEGG, MetaCyc, CAS registry number:


1. Kaufmann, F., Wohlfarth, G. and Diekert, G. O-demethylase from Acetobacterium dehalogenans—substrate specificity and function of the participating proteins. Eur. J. Biochem. 253 (1998) 706-711. [PMID: 9654069]

2. Engelmann, T., Kaufmann, F. and Diekert, G. Isolation and characterization of a veratrol:corrinoid protein methyl transferase from Acetobacterium dehalogenans. Arch. Microbiol. 175 (2001) 376-383. [PMID: 11409548]

3. Naidu, D. and Ragsdale, S.W. Characterization of a three-component vanillate O-demethylase from Moorella thermoacetica. J. Bacteriol. 183 (2001) 3276-3281. [PMID: 11344134]

4. Pierce, E., Xie, G., Barabote, R.D., Saunders, E., Han, C.S., Detter, J.C., Richardson, P., Brettin, T.S., Das, A., Ljungdahl, L.G. and Ragsdale, S.W. The complete genome sequence of Moorella thermoacetica (f. Clostridium thermoaceticum). Environ. Microbiol. 10 (2008) 2550-2573. [PMID: 18631365]

5. Kurth, J.M., Nobu, M.K., Tamaki, H., de Jonge, N., Berger, S., Jetten, M.SM., Yamamoto, K., Mayumi, D., Sakata, S., Bai, L., Cheng, L., Nielsen, J.L., Kamagata, Y., Wagner, T. and Welte, C.U. Methanogenic archaea use a bacteria-like methyltransferase system to demethoxylate aromatic compounds. ISME J. 15 (2021) 3549-3565. [PMID: 34145392]

6. Welte, C.U., de Graaf, R., Dalcin Martins, P., Jansen, R.S., Jetten, M.SM. and Kurth, J.M. A novel methoxydotrophic metabolism discovered in the hyperthermophilic archaeon Archaeoglobus fulgidus. Environ. Microbiol. 23 (2021) 4017-4033. [PMID: 33913565]

[EC created 2022]

Return to EC 2.1.1 home page
Return to EC 2.1 home page
Return to EC 2 home page
Return to Enzymes home page
Return to IUBMB Biochemical Nomenclature home page