The enzyme requires thiamine diphosphate and catalyses the first step in the clavulanic-acid-biosynthesis pathway. The 2-hydroxy-3-oxo group transferred from glyceraldehyde 3-phosphate is isomerized during transfer to form the 2-carboxyethyl group.
Caines, M.E.C., Elkins, J.M., Hewitson, K.S. and Schofield, C.J. Crystal structure and mechanistic implications of N2-(2-carboxyethyl)arginine synthase, the first enzymes in the clavulanic acid biosynthesis pathway. J. Biol. Chem.279 (2004) 5685–5692. [PMID: 14623876]
Khaleeli, N., Li, R. and Townsend, C.A. Origin of the β-lactam carbons in clavulanic acid from an unusual thiamine pyrophosphate-mediated reaction. J. Am. Chem. Soc.121 (1999) 9223–9224.