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Biology 2013, 2(1), 177-188;

Novel Cold-Adapted Esterase MHlip from an Antarctic Soil Metagenome

Laboratory of Biological Macromolecules, Centre for Protein Engineering, University of Liège, Institut de Chimie B6a, Liège, Sart-Tilman (4000), Belgium
Department of Earth System Science & Department of Ecology and Evolutionary Biology, University of California Irvine, 3208 Croul Hall, 92697 Irvine CA, USA
Puratos Group, Rue Bourrie 12, Andenne, Belgium
Puratos Group, Industrielaan 25, Groot-Bijgarden, Belgium
Department of Microbiology, Immunology and Biotechnology, School of Pharmacy and Biochemistry, University of Buenos Aires, Junin 956 (1113), Buenos Aires, Argentina
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
These authors equally contributed to this work.
Received: 3 December 2012 / Revised: 4 January 2013 / Accepted: 11 January 2013 / Published: 25 January 2013
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Polar Microbiology: Recent Advances and Future Perspectives)
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An Antarctic soil metagenomic library was screened for lipolytic enzymes and allowed for the isolation of a new cytosolic esterase from the a/b hydrolase family 6, named MHlip. This enzyme is related to hypothetical genes coding esterases, aryl-esterases and peroxydases, among others. MHlip was produced, purified and its activity was determined. The substrate profile of MHlip reveals a high specificity for short p-nitrophenyl-esters. The apparent optimal activity of MHlip was measured for p-nitrophenyl-acetate, at 33 °C, in the pH range of 6–9. The MHlip thermal unfolding was investigated by spectrophotometric methods, highlighting a transition (Tm) at 50 °C. The biochemical characterization of this enzyme showed its adaptation to cold temperatures, even when it did not present evident signatures associated with cold-adapted proteins. Thus, MHlip adaptation to cold probably results from many discrete structural modifications, allowing the protein to remain active at low temperatures. Functional metagenomics is a powerful approach to isolate new enzymes with tailored biophysical properties (e.g., cold adaptation). In addition, beside the ever growing amount of sequenced DNA, the functional characterization of new catalysts derived from environment is still required, especially for poorly characterized protein families like α/b hydrolases. View Full-Text
Keywords: α/b hydrolase; lipolytic enzymes; metagenomics; p-nitrophenyl-ester; cold-adaptation α/b hydrolase; lipolytic enzymes; metagenomics; p-nitrophenyl-ester; cold-adaptation

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Berlemont, R.; Jacquin, O.; Delsaute, M.; La Salla, M.; Georis, J.; Verté, F.; Galleni, M.; Power, P. Novel Cold-Adapted Esterase MHlip from an Antarctic Soil Metagenome. Biology 2013, 2, 177-188.

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