Dimethyl ether Pathway Map

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This pathway was contributed by Dr. Larry Wackett and completed by Jian Ma, University of Minnesota.

Dimethyl ether, also known as methyl ether or wood ether, is a colorless gas that has been used in refrigeration applications. If oxygenated on one of the carbon atoms, it will undergo spontaneous decomposition to methanol and formaldehyde. This has been demonstrated to be catalyzed by a nitrifying bacterium expressing ammonia monooxygenase. Dimethyl ether has also been shown to be oxidized by methanotrophic bacteria but it does not serve as a growth substrate for those bacteria (Meyers, 1982).

The following is a text-format Dimethyl ether pathway map. An organism which can initiate the pathway is given, but other organisms may also carry out later steps. Follow the links for more information on compounds or reactions. This map is also available in graphic (5k) format.

                      Dimethyl ether(DME)              
                    Nitrosomonas europaea
                              | ammonia
                              | monooxygenase 
                 Formaldehyde + Methanol       
                       \            /
                        \          /
                         \        /
                          \      /
                           \    /
                            \  /
                           to the 
                     C1 Metabolic Cycle 

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Page Author(s): Jian Ma

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