Quinonoid dihydropteridine reductase (QDPR) catalyzes the regeneration of tetrahydrobiopterin (BH4), a cofactor for monoamine synthesis, phenylalanine hydroxylation and nitric oxide production. Here, we produced and analyzed a transgenic Qdpr-/- mouse model. Unexpectedly, the BH4 contents in the Qdpr-/- mice were not decreased and even increased in some tissues, whereas those of the oxidized form dihydrobiopterin (BH2) were significantly increased. We demonstrated that unlike the wild-type mice, dihydrofolate reductase regenerated BH4 from BH2 in the mutants. Furthermore, we revealed wide alterations in folate-associated metabolism in the Qdpr-/- mice, which suggests an interconnection between folate and biopterin metabolism in the transgenic mouse model.
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