Springer Online Journal Archives 1860-2000
Process Engineering, Biotechnology, Nutrition Technology
Abstract An esterase gene from the moderate thermophilic strain Bacillus licheniformis LCB40 was cloned and expressed in Escherichia coli. Comparison of the amino acid sequence of the esterase with those of known lipases and esterases showed the presence of the well-conserved Gly-X-Ser-X-Gly pentapeptide, with an alanine replacing the first glycine. This substitution has never been reported for an esterase but it is present in the lipases from Bacillus subtilis, Bacillus pumilus and Galactomyces candidum. The amino acid sequence showed similarities with lipases and with mammalian lecithin-cholesterol acyltranferases and no similarities with esterases. The enzyme activity of a crude extract from a recombinant Escherichia coli strain showed hydrolysis of p-nitrophenyl caprylate (pNPC8) as for esterases, but not of p-nitrophenyl palmitate (pNPC16) or olive oil such as for lipases. Thus, the enzyme displays the original property of associating the activity of an esterase with a primary sequence showing high similarity with lipases.
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