SUMMARY: An immunological approach was used for the study of ornithine carbamoyltransferase (OTCase) evolution in bacteria. Antisera were prepared against the anabolic and catabolic OTCases of and as well as against OTCase and putrescine carbamoyltransferases from these antisera were then tested against the unpurified OTCases, either anabolic or catabolic, of 34 bacterial strains. Extensive cross-reactions were observed between the antisera to catabolic OTCases from and and the catabolic enzymes from other species or genera. These antisera cross-reacted also with the anabolic OTCases of strains of the Enterobacteriaceae but not with the anabolic OTCases of the same species or of other species or genera. The cross-reaction measured between the antisera against anabolic OTCase and the anabolic OTCases of other were largely in agreement with the phylogenic subdivision of proposed by N. J. Palleroni. The correlation was also significantly higher with the anabolic enzyme of an archaeobacterium, , than with the catabolic or anabolic OTCases from other genera in the eubacterial line. The antiserum raised against anabolic OTCase was quite specific for its antigen and appeared to be raised against the heaviest of the various oligomeric structures of the enzyme.


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