The reaction between xylulose 5-phosphate and formaldehyde catalysed by cell-free extracts of methanol-grown has been examined. Dihydroxyacetone was identified as a reaction product by thin-layer chromatography. The dihydroxyacetone was labelled when [C]formaldehyde was used as substrate. Xylulose 5-phosphate was a better substrate than ribulose 5-phosphate or ribose 5-phosphate. Little activity was observed in extracts of glucose-grown . It is proposed that the enzyme responsible is the dihydroxyacetone synthase previously postulated as a key enzyme in assimilation of methanol by yeasts. For the detection and accurate assay of this enzyme it is essential first to remove methanol from cell-free extracts of the organism.


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