IUBMB Enzyme Nomenclature


Accepted name: poly(3-hydroxyoctanoate) depolymerase

Reaction: Hydrolyses the polyester poly{oxycarbonyl[(R)-2-pentylethylene]} to oligomers

Other name(s): PHO depolymerase; poly(3HO) depolymerase; poly[(R)-hydroxyalkanoic acid] depolymerase; poly(HA) depolymerase; poly(HAMCL) depolymerase; poly[(R)-3-hydroxyoctanoate] hydrolase

Systematic name: poly{oxycarbonyl[(R)-2-pentylethylene]} hydrolase

Comments: The main product after prolonged incubation is the dimer [3]. Besides hydrolysing polymers of 3-hydroxyoctanoic acid, the enzyme also hydrolyses other polymers derived from medium-chain-length (C6-C12) hydroxyalkanoic acids and copolymers of mixtures of these. It also hydrolyses p-nitrophenyl esters of fatty acids. Polymers of short-chain-length hydroxyalkanoic acids such as poly[(R)-3-hydroxybutanoic acid] and poly[(R)-3-hydroxypentanoic acid] are not hydrolysed.

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


1. Jendrossek, D. Microbial degradation of polyesters. Adv. Biochem. Eng. Biotechnol. 71 (2001) 293-325. [PMID: 11217416]

2. García, B., Olivera, E.R., Miñambres, B., Fernández-Valverde, M., Cañedo, L.M., Prieto, M.A., García, J.L., Martínez, M. and Luengo, J.M. Novel biodegradable aromatic plastics from a bacterial source. Genetic and biochemical studies on a route of the phenylacetyl-CoA catabolon. J. Biol. Chem. 274 (1999) 29228-29241. [PMID: 10506180]

3. Schirmer, A., Jendrossek, D. and Schlegel, H.G. Degradation of poly(3-hydroxyoctanoic acid) [P(3HO)] by bacteria: purification and properties of a P(3HO) depolymerase from Pseudomonas fluorescens GK13. Appl. Environ. Microbiol. 59 (1993) 1220-1227. [PMID: 8476295]

[EC created 2001, modified 2005]

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