Prokaryotic diacylglycerol kinase and undecaprenol kinase

Wade D. Van Horn, Charles R. Sanders

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

55 Scopus citations


Prokaryotic diacylglycerol kinase (DAGK) and undecaprenol kinase (UDPK) are the lone members of a family of multispan membrane enzymes that are very small, lack relationships to any other family of proteinsincluding water soluble kinasesand exhibit an unusual structure and active site architecture. Escherichia coli DAGK plays an important role in recycling diacylglycerol produced as a by-product of biosynthesis of molecules located in the periplasmic space. UDPK seems to play an analogous role in gram-positive bacteria, where its importance is evident because UDPK is essential for biofilm formation by the oral pathogen Streptococcus mutans. DAGK has also long served as a model system for studies of membrane protein biocatalysis, folding, stability, and structure. This review explores our current understanding of the microbial physiology, enzymology, structural biology, and folding of the prokaryotic DAGK family, which is based on over 40 years of studies.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)81-101
Number of pages21
JournalAnnual review of biophysics
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jun 9 2012


  • DAGK
  • Lipid
  • MDO cycle
  • Membrane protein folding
  • Membrane protein structure
  • Misfolding
  • UDPK
  • dgkA gene

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biophysics
  • Structural Biology
  • Bioengineering
  • Biochemistry
  • Cell Biology


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