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Cloning, expression and sequencing of citrate synthase from thermoplasma volcanium

Çekiç, Çağlar
In this study first time, we have cloned and sequenced the citrate synthase gene from a thermoacidophilic archaeon Thermoplasma (Tp.) volcanium (Optimum growth temperature of Tp.volcanium is 60oC and optimum pH is 2.0.). For cloning we have followed a PCR based approach. Amplification of citrate synthase gene from chromosomal DNA of Tp.volcanium yielded a product of 1476 bp containing an open reading frame of 1161 bp comprising the structural gene. After ligation of the PCR amplicon to pDrive vector through AU complementation, recombinant plasmids were transferred into E.coli TG-1 competent cells. Out of three recombinants, E.coli pDriveCS-31 was selected for further characterization by restriction mapping and DNA sequencing. Southern Blotting and Hybridization using the membrane blot of pDriveCS-31 plasmid and DIG-labeled PCR amplified citrate synthase gene probe, also confirmed the cloning of Tp.volcanium citrate synthase gene in E.coli. Clustal W Version 1.82 was used for alignment of aminoacid sequence of Tp.volcanium citrate synthase with that of other archaeal, bacterial and eukaryotic citrate synthases. The highest sequence similarity (87%) was found between Tp.volcanium and Tp.acidophilum enzymes. Despite low sequence homology (18%) with the pig enzyme, of the 11 residues implicated in catalytic activity of the pig citrate synthase 9 were conserved in the Tp.volcanium enzyme. Heterologous expression of this citrate synthase gene in E.coli has been achieved under the control of its promoter sequences. The recombinant enzyme (386 aa) has been purified to homogeneity by affinity chromatography on Reactive Red 120 column. The subunit molecular size was estimated as 43 kDa. The purified enzyme followed classical Michaelis-Menten kinetics. The Km values of 5.15 æM and 5.60 æM, and Vmax values of 1.74 æmoles/ml/min and 1.60 æmoles/ml/min were calculated from LIneweaver-Burk plots for acetyl-CoA and oxaloacetate, respectively. The recombinant enzyme was thermostable and retained about 80% of the activity at 85oC after 1 hour.