High-level expression and characterization of a novel serine protease in Pichia pastoris by multi-copy integration
•A novel serine protease was expressed and characterized in Pichia pastoris.•Construction of multi-copy Sptk-expressing vectors using an in vitro BioBrick assembly approach.•Gene dosage had crucial importance in optimizing Sptk expression.•The N-glycosylation of SPTK could be efficiently removed through co-culture
A novel serine protease from Trichoderma koningii (SPTK) was synthesized and expressed in Pichia pastoris. The recombinant SPTK was completely inhibited by phenyl methyl sulfonyl fluoride (PMSF), suggesting that SPTK belonged to the subgroup of serine proteases. The optimum pH and temperature for the recombinant SPTK reaction were 6.0 and 55 °C, respectively. SPTK performed a tolerance to most organic solvents and metal ions, and the addition of Triton X-100 exhibited an activation of SPTK up to 243% of its initial activity but SDS strongly inhibited. Moreover, our study showed that a portion of SPTK was N-glycosylated during fermentation. The activity and thermal stability of the recombinant SPTK were improved after the removal of glycosylation, and the N-glycosylation of SPTK could be efficiently removed through co-culture with P. pastoris strains expressing Endo-β-N-acetylglucosaminidase H. We constructed expression vectors harboring from one to four repeats of Sptk-expressing cassettes via an in vitro BioBrick assembly approach. And the result of quantitative polymerase chain reaction (qPCR) indicated that the tandem expression cassettes were integrated into the genome of P. pastoris through a single recombination event. These strains were used to study the correlation between the gene copy number and the expression level of SPTK. The results of qPCR and enzyme activity assays indicated that the copy number variation of Sptk gene generally had a positive effect on the expression level of SPTK, while an increase in integration of target gene did not guarantee its high expression. The maximum yield and specific activity of SPTK in P. pastoris were obtained from the recombinant yeast strain harboring two-copy tandem Sptk-expressing cassettes, the yield reached 0.48 g/l after a 6-d induction using menthol in shake flasks and 3.2 g/l in high-density fermentation with specific activity of 5200 U/mg. In addition, the recombinant SPTK could efficiently degrade chicken feather and hydrolyzed the gelatin layer of photographic film. These properties made the recombinant SPTK a suitable candidate for industrial applications and for eliminating the pollution of keratin.
Journal: Enzyme and Microbial Technology - Volume 92, October 2016, Pages 56–66