The Calicheamicin Gene Cluster and Its Iterative Type I Enediyne PKS

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Science  16 Aug 2002:
Vol. 297, Issue 5584, pp. 1173-1176
DOI: 10.1126/science.1072105

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The enediynes exemplify nature's ingenuity. We have cloned and characterized the biosynthetic locus coding for perhaps the most notorious member of the nonchromoprotein enediyne family, calicheamicin. This gene cluster contains an unusual polyketide synthase (PKS) that is demonstrated to be essential for enediyne biosynthesis. Comparison of the calicheamicin locus with the locus encoding the chromoprotein enediyne C-1027 reveals that the enediyne PKS is highly conserved among these distinct enediyne families. Contrary to previous hypotheses, this suggests that the chromoprotein and nonchromoprotein enediynes are generated by similar biosynthetic pathways.

  • * To whom correspondence should be addressed. E-mail: farnet{at}; jthorson{at}

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