Pentalenolactone (PL) irreversibly inactivates the enzyme glyceraldehyde-3-phosphate dehydrogenase [D-glyceraldehyde-3-phosphate:NAD+ oxidoreductase (phosphorylating)] (EC 220.127.116.11) and thus is a potent inhibitor of glycolysis in both procaryotic and eucaryotic cells. We showed that PL-producing strain Streptomyces arenae TU469 contains a PL-insensitive glyceraldehyde-3-phosphate dehydrogenase under conditions of PL production. In complex media no PL production was observed, and a PL-sensitive glyceraldehyde-3-phosphate dehydrogenase, rather than the insensitive enzyme, could be detected. The enzymes had the same substrate specificity but different catalytic and molecular properties. The apparent Km values of the PL-insensitive and PL-sensitive enzymes for glyceraldehyde-3-phosphate were 100 and 250 microM, respectively, and the PL-sensitive enzyme was strongly inhibited by PL under conditions in which the PL-insensitive enzyme was not inhibited. The physical properties of the PL-insensitive enzyme suggest that the protein is an octamer, whereas the PL-sensitive enzyme, like other glyceraldehyde-3-phosphate dehydrogenases, appears to be a tetramer.