Author Topic: biosynthesis of cocaine?  (Read 37305 times)

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  • Guest
biosynthesis of cocaine?
« on: October 07, 2004, 11:57:00 PM »
Is the genome of coca plant analysed? Is it known which enzymes participate in the biosynthesis of cocaine?


  • Guest
The biosynthetic pathways
« Reply #1 on: October 08, 2004, 03:26:00 AM »
The genome has not been sequenced, just a handful of organisms has had that honor as of yet.
The biosynthetic pathways are rather well-known though, as far as I know:

Post 295082

(Rhodium: "Cocaine biosynthetic pathway", Novel Discourse)


  • Guest
Thank you
« Reply #2 on: October 16, 2004, 07:38:00 PM »
Thank you for the information Grand Master. Is there anyone who have any ideas how to deduce which protein are involved in a biosynthetic pathway if the intermediary products are known?


  • Guest
I don't think that is possible, as you don't...
« Reply #3 on: October 16, 2004, 08:51:00 PM »
I don't think that is possible, as you don't always know what proteins the organism even has. Given a full enzyme list, you still have several alternate proteins for the same task, so in the end you always need to perform controlled experiments to deduce that.


  • Guest
easier said than done
« Reply #4 on: October 25, 2004, 09:57:00 AM »
Most scientists have dreamed of transferring biosynthetic pathways to a more efficient vector.  The commercial opportunity is mind blowing!  Most soon find out…  

The reality is protein production is complex and initiated, controlled and limited by many external and autonomous genomic initiators.  Further, the complete 'gene' for cocaine per se (and most others) is split up and spread over different loci of the genome; and only produce the specific end product when all the pieces of the biosynthesis pathway align.  Thats the hard part  :(  

The first step is understanding the biosynthetic reaction mechanism.  The second step is to sequence the organism (coca plant).  The third and annoying step is to work out which parts of the genome and environmental stimuli are activated/required during each individual biosynthetic step.  The last and annoying step is deducing, isolating and transferring the genes to a more efficient system and replicating the stimuli needed for maximum protein production.

Not an easy task...  However, modern biotechnologies are making this process easier.  Ask your original question in 10yrs time and you'll get a more satifying answer  :o