Friday, August 14, 2009

Menaquinone 6 (MK-6)

Anyone know where to buy this damn thing? I can't believe that I cannot find a single chemical and/or pharmaceutical company that produces this quinone for sale for research purposes. Sigma sells MK-4 (it's Vitamin K2), but what about MK-6? Nada. Grrrr!


Ivan Privaci said...

What, you can't just make your own? It can't be that hard, can it?
Buy some Natto, get a quick strain-improvement program going[1][2], and next thing you know you'll have instant Bacillus subtilis-produced menaquinone coming out of your ears. Metaphorically speaking.

(I am, of course, at least 90% joking. The remaining 10% is my chronic, underlying, knee-jerk crusade against the loss of "do it yourself" cultural spirit [and, of course, suppliers being able to overcharge for everything because everyone has to buy from them rather than making their own...]. Given that I have no idea how hard it is to actually produce and sufficiently purify menaquinone for your purposes, I figured I'd amuse myself by pretenting that it must be easy..."Nothing is impossible for someone who doesn't actually have to do it...")

[1]Sato T, Yamada Y, Ohtani Y, Mitsui N, Murasawa H, Araki H:"Efficient production of menaquinone (vitamin K2) by a menadione-resistant mutant of Bacillus subtilis"; 2001; Journal of Industrial Microbiology and Biotechnology; v26 no3; pp115-120
[2]Sato T, Yamada Y, Ohtani Y, Mitsui N, Murasawa H, Araki H:"Production of Menaquinone (vitamin K2)-7 by Bacillus subtilis"; 2001; Journal of Bioscience and Bioengineering; Vol. 91 no. 1;pp 16-20

Ivan Privaci said...

(Oh, and please pretend not to notice - as I appear to have done - that I just looked up articles describing production of the wrong variant of Vitamin K-2 anyway...)

Thomas Joseph said...


I need the MK-6 for species comparison. I have a new species of bacteria and IJSEM really wants you to do respiratory isoprenoid quinone analysis as part of the species writeup. It's about as far off the beaten path of what we routinely do in our lab as one can get. Therefore, setting up my lab to start producing and purifying the stuff would take up valuable resources (the most important being time) with no benefit to the long term goals of my lab. The simple solution is to buy the damn crap, run it over our HPLC just prior to running the samples from our species on it, and match them up. Then we write the paper, send it off and forget about menaquinones until the next time (IF!) we ever decide to define a new species.

Also, while I could produce MK-6 on my own, it'd still be sort of useful to have a standard/control I could compare my prep's to, to confirm that what I have is truly MK-6, and for that ... I need to find MK-6 somewhere.

So to answer your non-facetious 10% part ;) ... we probably could do it, but we'd have to redirect too much manpower if we wanted to do it right. Plus, while I understand the value in "doing it yourself" (especially when it comes to understanding what the reagents in your kit are actually doing ... which becomes important when you need to troubleshoot), I guess I'm of the new brand of scientist who sees the time (and in turn money) saved by using kits and store-bought research grade reagents and figures someone has done the grunt work which allows me to focus instead on the applied research question. It's an interesting philosophical question, and is probably worthy of a blog post in the near future.

And here I was hoping someone was going to list a very small producer of the stuff that I (or Google) had never heard of. :P

Thanks for getting my hopes up.

Ivan Privaci said...

Unfortunately, I'm still stuck (at the moment) doing the "computer nerd" thing so that I can have a job and am therefore rather disconnected from suppliers of microbiology and biochemistry reagents. Heck, I couldn't even get the local VWR rep to even reply to my email asking about microscopes.

(I SWEAR I will get to do Real Professional Microbiology Stuff with my degree one of these days...)

On a separate note: AH! So it's the IJSEM's fault that so many new microbes have useless names like "[Genus] sp." or "Isolate ZXKUQYB197" - it's like the academic equivalent of overbearing regulatory costs...

Genomic Repairman said...

I'm checking with a buddy of mine who is a synthetic chemist, if he knows of anyone with that stuff.

Genomic Repairman said...

Okay so here is what I dug up, hopefully it works.

Pharmten Chemical Co., Limited
412# Jiaxing Road
Leshan, Shizhong District, 614000
People's Republic of China
Contact: Mr. Bai yu
Phone: 0086 833 271 84 68
Fax: 0086 833 877 64 89

Order Number: PTN3253
Quantity: 1g Price: $230

Tom said...

Thanks GR. I'll check it out.