The hyperthermophilic archaeon Sulfolobus solfataricus metabolises glucose and galactose by a 'promiscuous' non-phosphorylative variant of the Entner-Doudoroff pathway, in which a series of enzymes have sufficient substrate promiscuity to permit the metabolism of both sugars. Recently, it has been proposed that the part-phosphorylative Entner-Doudoroff pathway occurs in parallel in S. solfataricus as an alternative route for glucose metabolism. In this report we demonstrate, by in vitro kinetic studies of D-2-keto-3-deoxygluconate (KDG) kinase and KDG aldolase, that the part-phosphorylative pathway in S. solfataricus is also promiscuous for the metabolism of both glucose and galactose. (c) 2005 Federation of European Biochemical Societies. Published by Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.