EC - Pheophorbidase

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IntEnz Enzyme Nomenclature


Accepted name:
Other names:
Systematic name:
pheophorbide-a hydrolase



This enzyme forms part of the chlorophyll degradation pathway, and is found in higher plants and in algae. In higher plants it participates in de-greening processes such as fruit ripening, leaf senescence, and flowering. The enzyme exists in two forms: type 1 is induced by senescence whereas type 2 is constitutively expressed [1,2]. The enzyme is highly specific for pheophorbide as substrate (with a preference for pheophorbide a over pheophorbide b) as other chlorophyll derivatives such as protochlorophyllide a, pheophytin a and c, chlorophyll a and b, and chlorophyllide a cannot act as substrates [2]. Another enzyme, called pheophorbide demethoxycarbonylase (PDC), produces pyropheophorbide a from pheophorbide a without forming an intermediate although the precise reaction is not yet known [1].

Links to other databases

Enzymes and pathways: NC-IUBMB , BRENDA , DIAGRAM , ExplorEnz , ENZYME@ExPASy , KEGG , MetaCyc , UniPathway
Protein domains and families: PROSITE:PDOC00110
Structural data: CSA , EC2PDB
Gene Ontology: GO:0035560


  1. Suzuki, Y., Doi, M. and Shioi, Y.
    Two enzymatic reaction pathways in the formation of pyropheophorbide a.
    Photosyn. Res. 74: 225-233 (2002). [PMID: 16228561]
  2. Suzuki, Y., Amano, T. and Shioi, Y.
    Characterization and cloning of the chlorophyll-degrading enzyme pheophorbidase from cotyledons of radish.
    Plant Physiol. 140: 716-725 (2006). [PMID: 16384908]
  3. Hörtensteiner, S.
    Chlorophyll degradation during senescence.
    Annu. Rev. Plant Biol. 57: 55-77 (2006). [PMID: 16669755]

[EC created 2007]