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  • 1
    ISSN: 1432-0614
    Source: Springer Online Journal Archives 1860-2000
    Topics: Biology , Process Engineering, Biotechnology, Nutrition Technology
    Notes: Abstract  An efficient method for gene replacement in Bacillus megaterium was developed and used to inactivate the chromosomal neutral protease gene (nprM) from strain DSM319. A temperature-dependant suicide vector was constructed to allow replacement of the normal chromosomal copy with an altered version of the nprM gene. One mutant B. megaterium MS941 was selected for further characterization. Measurement of extracellular protease activity from strain MS941 indicated the existence of an additional minor extracellular protease in B. megaterium. Inhibitor studies revealed that this minor protease, comprising only 1.4% of the wild-type total extracellular protease activities, is a serine-type enzyme.
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  • 2
    ISSN: 1432-0614
    Source: Springer Online Journal Archives 1860-2000
    Topics: Biology , Process Engineering, Biotechnology, Nutrition Technology
    Notes: Abstract  A recombinant strain of Saccharomyces cerevisiae was constructed that contained the genes encoding a bacterial α-amylase (AMY1), a yeast glucoamylase (STA2) and a bacterial pullulanase (pulA). The Bacillus amyloliquefaciensα-amylase and S. cerevisiae var. diastaticus glucoamylase genes were expressed in S. cerevisiae using their native promoters and the encoded enzymes secreted under direction of their native leader sequences. In contrast, the Klebsiella pneumoniae pullulanase gene was placed under the control of the yeast alcohol dehydrogenase gene promoter (ADC1 P ) and secreted using the yeast mating pheromone α-factor secretion signal (MF α 1 S ). Transcription termination of the pullulanase gene was effected by the yeast tryptophan synthase gene terminator (TRP5 T ), whereas termination of the glucoamylase and α-amylase genes was directed by their native terminators. Pullulanase (PUL1) produced by recombinant yeasts containing ADC1 P MF α 1 S pulA TRP5 T (designated PUL1) was further characterized and compared to its bacterial counterpart (PulA). The different genes were introduced into S. cerevisiae in different combinations and the various amylolytic Saccharomyces transformants compared to Schwanniomyces occidentalis. Introduction of PUL1 into a S. cerevisiae strain containing both STA2 and AMY1, resulted in 99% assimilation of starch
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  • 3
    ISSN: 1432-0614
    Source: Springer Online Journal Archives 1860-2000
    Topics: Biology , Process Engineering, Biotechnology, Nutrition Technology
    Notes: Abstract  The gene encoding the novel enzyme N-acylamino acid racemase (AAR) was cloned in recombinant phage λ-4 from the DNA library of Amycolatopsis sp. TS-1-60, a rare actinomycete, using antiserum against the enzyme. The cloned gene was subcloned and transformed in Escherichia coli JM105 using pUC118 as a vector. The AAR gene consists of an open-reading frame of 1104 nucleotides, which specifies a 368-amino-acid protein with a molecular mass of 39 411Da. The molecular mass deduced from the AAR gene is in good agreement with the subunit molecular mass (40kDa) of AAR from Amycolatopsis sp. TS-1-60. The guanosine plus cytosine content of the AAR gene was about 70%. Athough the AAR gene uses the unusual initiation codon GTG, the gene was expressed in Escherichia coli using the lac promoter of pUC118. The amount of the enzyme produced by the transformant was 16 times that produced by Amycolatopsis sp. TS-1-60. When the unusual initiation codon GTG was changed to ATG, the enzyme productivity of the transformant increased to more than 37 times that of Amycolatopsis sp. TS-1 – 60. In the comparison of the DNA sequence and the deduced amino acid sequence of AAR with those of known racemases and epimerases in data bases, no significant sequence homology was found. However, AAR resembles mandelate racemase in that requires metal ions for enzyme activity. Comparison of the deduced amino acid sequences of mandelate racemase and AAR revealed amino acid sequences in AAR similar to those of both the catalytic and metal-ion-binding sites of mandelate racemase.
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  • 4
    ISSN: 1432-0614
    Source: Springer Online Journal Archives 1860-2000
    Topics: Biology , Process Engineering, Biotechnology, Nutrition Technology
    Notes: Abstract Residual biomass, produced by the thermophilic fungus, Talaromyces emersonii CBS 814.70, following growth on glucose-containing media, was examined for its ability to take up uranium from aqueous solution. It was found that the biomass had a relatively high observed biosorption capacity for the uranium (280 mg/g dry weight biomass). The calculated maximum biosorption capacity obtained by fitting the data to a Langmuir model was calculated to be 323 mg uranium/g dry weight biomass. Pretreatment of the biomass with either dilute HCl or NaOH brought about a significant decrease in biosorptive capacity for uranium. Studies on the effects of variation in temperature on the biosorptive capacity demonstrated no significant change in binding between 20°C and 60°C. However, a significant decrease in biosorptive capacity was observed at 5°C. Binding of uranium to the biomass at all temperatures reached equilibrium within 2 min. While the routine binding assays were performed at pH 5.0, adjustment of the pH to 3.0 gave rise to a significant decrease in biosorption capacity by the biomass. The biosorptive capacity of the biomass for uranium was increased when extraction from solution in sea-water was examined.
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  • 5
    ISSN: 1432-0614
    Source: Springer Online Journal Archives 1860-2000
    Topics: Biology , Process Engineering, Biotechnology, Nutrition Technology
    Notes: Abstract  Membrane mass spectrometry (MMS) with reduced sample withdrawal has been used to investigate the metabolic activity of yeast cells immobilised in porous glass. An adapted MS membrane inlet reactor with a polyethylene terephthalate barrier membrane has been constructed for this purpose. In a first experiment, the mass transport of O2 in a porous glass disc under well-defined experimental conditions has been studied by determining the apparent effective diffusion coefficient. The behaviour of immobilised Saccharomyces cerevisiae has been monitored by the MMS measurement of O2 and CO2 after applying a step in glucose concentration. Free-cell kinetic parameters were used in a dynamic reaction-diffusion model to simulate the O2 consumption curve. The theoretical and experimental curve showed comparable behaviour, which means that the immobilisation of yeast cells in porous glass has no substantial effect on its growth kinetics.
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  • 6
    ISSN: 1432-0614
    Source: Springer Online Journal Archives 1860-2000
    Topics: Biology , Process Engineering, Biotechnology, Nutrition Technology
    Notes: Abstract  Lignin peroxidase from the white-rot fungus Phanerochaete chrysosporium was chemically modified by reductive alkylation with benzyl, naphthyl and anthracyl moieties, thereby increasing its superficial hydrophobicity. The three chemical modifications altered the kinetic behaviour of the enzyme in 10% acetonitrile with four different substrates: carbazole, pinacyanol, pyrene and veratryl alcohol. Benzyl modification of lignin peroxidase increased the catalytic efficiency (k cat/K m,app) 2.7 times for carbazole oxidation. Thirteen N-containing compounds, including pyrroles, pyridines, and aromatic amines, were tested to determine whether they could be oxidized by lignin peroxidase in 10% acetonitrile. All the pyrrole analogues and all the amines tested were oxidized, but none of the pyridine analogous reacted. Some products were isolated and analyzed by high-resolution mass spectrometry. Most were dimers or polymers and, in some cases, these contained oxygen atoms. The possibility of bitumen and petroleum modifications using this enzyme is discussed.
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  • 7
    ISSN: 1432-0614
    Source: Springer Online Journal Archives 1860-2000
    Topics: Biology , Process Engineering, Biotechnology, Nutrition Technology
    Notes: Abstract  A general and simple equation is presented to account for the effect of CO2 absorption and the dissociation of carbonic acid in liquid on the measurement of the CO2 evolution rate (QCO2) of both anaerobic and aerobic continuous cultures. For aerobic cultures the same equation applies to the measurement of the respiratory quotient (RQ). The deviation of QCO2 and RQ, calculated from gas-phase measurements, from their true values can be assessed with two parameters: one accounts for the influence of pH, resulting from dissociation of carbonic acid, the other for the influence of operating conditions. Plots are given to show the influences of culture and operating conditions; they may be used as a guideline for choosing proper operating conditions for a reliable measurement of CO2 evolution rate and RQ value.
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  • 8
    ISSN: 1432-0614
    Source: Springer Online Journal Archives 1860-2000
    Topics: Biology , Process Engineering, Biotechnology, Nutrition Technology
    Notes: Abstract  Previous studies have shown that a 20-kDa protein enhances production of the insecticidal CytA and CryIVA proteins of Bacillus thuringiensis in Escherichia coli as well as CytA production and crystal formation in B. thuringiensis. To determine whether the 20-kDa protein could enhance CryIVD production, an expression vector was constructed with the 20-kDa open-reading frame under control of cryIA(c) promoters and the cryIVD gene under control of its own promoter. Acrystalliferous cells of B. thuringiensis transformed with this plasmid, designated pWF53, produced large bitrapezoidal CryIVD crystals that averaged 1.3×0.92×0.31 μm, approximately fivefold larger in volume than wild-type CryIVD crystals, and 1.7 fold the volume of crystals produced using the cryIVD operon, which contains the cryIVD gene and the gene for the 20-kDa protein. These results demonstrate that the 20-kDa protein significantly improves net synthesis of CryIVD and promotes CryIVD crystal formation. Improved production of proteins as diverse as CryIVD and CytA by the 20-kDa protein indicates this protein may be useful in facilitating the production of other proteins.
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  • 9
    ISSN: 1432-0614
    Source: Springer Online Journal Archives 1860-2000
    Topics: Biology , Process Engineering, Biotechnology, Nutrition Technology
    Notes: Abstract  Human calcitonin (hCT) is a C-terminus α-amidated peptide hormone consisting of 32 amino acids. The amidated structure is essential for its biological activities, and the C-terminal-glycine-extended precursor peptide, hCT[G], is converted to bioactive hCT by a C-terminus-α-amidating enzyme. An efficient production method is described for the hCT[G] peptide, as a part of the fusion protein consisting of a modified E. coliβ-galactosidase, linker amino acids and hCT[G]. Stable inclusion bodies of the fusion protein in E. coli were expressed by focusing on the amino acid charge, and the fusion protein was modified by inserting a basic amino acid sequence into its linker region. This modification greatly affected the formation of inclusion bodies. E. coli strain W3110/pG97S4DhCT [G]R4 could produce a large amount of stable inclusion bodies, and the hCT[G] peptide was released quantitatively from the fusion protein by S. aureus V8 protease. This enabled a large-scale production method to be established for the hCT[G] precursor peptide in E. coli to produce mature hCT.
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  • 10
    ISSN: 1432-0614
    Source: Springer Online Journal Archives 1860-2000
    Topics: Biology , Process Engineering, Biotechnology, Nutrition Technology
    Notes: Abstract Two fluorometric assays for the determination of poly-β-hydroxybutyrate (PHB) inside intact cells are presented in this paper, a spectrofluorometric method and one based on a laser flow cytometer. The principles of these assays are given, and the results of these methods are compared with those of a gas chromatographic assay. All assays were used for the monitoring of batch cultivations of Alcaligenes eutrophus. The correlation between all methods was very good; however, the fluorometric analysis was the fastest while the cytometric assay gave a direct insight into the PHB distribution over the population.
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