Vanillyl alcohol oxidase

Tom A. Ewing, Gudrun Gygli, Marco W. Fraaije, Willem J.H. van Berkel*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter


This review presents a historical outline of the research on vanillyl alcohol oxidase (VAO) from Penicillium simplicissimum, one of the canonical members of the VAO/PCMH flavoprotein family. After describing its discovery and initial biochemical characterization, we discuss the physiological role, substrate scope, and catalytic mechanism of VAO, and review its three-dimensional structure and mechanism of covalent flavinylation. We also explain how protein engineering provided a deeper insight into the role of certain amino acid residues in determining the substrate specificity and enantioselectivity of the enzyme. Finally, we summarize recent computational studies about the migration of substrates and products through the enzyme's structure and the phylogenetic distribution of VAO and related enzymes.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationEnzymes
PublisherAcademic Press
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 18 Jul 2020

Publication series

ISSN (Print)1874-6047


  • Catalytic mechanism
  • Covalent flavinylation
  • Crystal structure
  • Enantioselectivity
  • Enzyme dynamics
  • Flavoprotein family
  • Lignin and phenols
  • Oxidase
  • Phylogenetics
  • Suicide inhibition

Fingerprint Dive into the research topics of 'Vanillyl alcohol oxidase'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this