The cytosolic isoform of ascorbate peroxidase was purified to homogeneity from 14-day-old pea (Pisum sativum L.) shoots. The enzyme is a homodimer with molecular weight of 57,500, composed of two subunits with molecular weight of 29,500. Spectral analysis and inhibitor studies were consistent with the presence of a heme moiety. When compared with ascorbate peroxidase activity derived from ruptured intact chloroplasts, the purified enzyme was found to have a higher stability, a broader pH optimum for activity, and the capacity to utilize alternate electron donors. Unlike classical plant peroxidases, the cytosolic ascorbate peroxidase had a very high preference for ascorbate as an electron donor and was specifically inhibited by p-chloromercurisulfonic acid and hydroxyurea. Antibodies raised against the cytosolic ascorbate peroxidase from pea did not cross-react with either protein extracts obtained from intact pea chloroplasts or horseradish peroxidase. The amino acid sequence of the N-terminal region of the purified enzyme was determined. Little homology was observed among pea cytosolic ascorbate peroxidase, the tea chloroplastic ascorbate peroxidase, and horseradish peroxidase; homology was, however, found with chloroplastic ascorbate peroxidase isolated from spinach leaves.
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