Reaction: L-tryptophan + H2O = indole + pyruvate + NH3 (overall reaction)
(1a) L-tryptophan = indole + 2-aminoprop-2-enoate
(1b) 2-aminoprop-2-enoate = 2-iminopropanoate (spontaneous)
(1c) 2-iminopropanoate + H2O = pyruvate + NH3 (spontaneous)
Other name(s): L-tryptophanase; L-tryptophan indole-lyase (deaminating); TNase
Systematic name: L-tryptophan indole-lyase (deaminating; pyruvate-forming)
Comments: A pyridoxal-phosphate protein, requiring K+. The enzyme cleaves a carbon-carbon bond, releasing indole and an unstable enamine product that tautomerizes to an imine form, which undergoes a hydrolytic deamination to form pyruvate and ammonia. The latter reaction, which can occur spontaneously, can also be catalysed by EC 188.8.131.52, 2-iminobutanoate/2-iminopropanoate deaminase. Also catalyses 2,3-elimination and β-replacement reactions of some indole-substituted tryptophan analogues of L-cysteine, L-serine and other 3-substituted amino acids.
Links to other databases: BRENDA, EXPASY, GTD, KEGG, Metacyc, PDB, CAS registry number: 9024-00-4
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