Using oligonucleotide probes derived from amino acid sequencing information, the structural gene for phosphoglycerate kinase from the extreme thermophile, Thermus thermophilus, was cloned in Escherichia coli and its complete nucleotide sequence determined. The gene consists of an open reading frame corresponding to a protein of 390 amino acid residues (calculated Mr 41,791) with an extreme bias for G or C (93.1%) in the codon third base position. Comparison of the deduced amino acid sequence with that of the corresponding mesophilic yeast enzyme indicated a number of significant differences. These are discussed in terms of the unusual codon bias and their possible role in enhanced protein thermal stability.

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