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The role of small heat shock proteins of the thermoacidophilic archaeon thermoplasma volcanium in the stress response

Aygar, Sema
In this study, possible involvement of the small heat shock proteins (sHsps) from a thermoacidophilic archaeon, Thermoplasma (Tp) volcanium in the stress response was investigated. Our results showed that heterologous, high level expression of TVN0775/sHsp gene in E.coli increased its thermotolerance at 53°C for two hours. But, the second sHsp of the Tp. volcanium, TVN0984/sHsp was not effective in improvement of the thermal resistance of the mesophilic bacterium (i. e., E.coli). The expression of the TVN0775/sHsp and TVN0984/sHsp genes increased about 3 fold after heat-shock at 65°C, as revealed by Real-Time PCR analysis. Although expression of the both genes was induced at 70°C, TVN0984/sHsp gene expression was increased higher (about 5 fold) than that of the TVN0775/sHsp gene expression (about 1.5 fold). Tp. volcanium cells were exposed to high pH (pH: 3.5, pH: 4.0, pH: 4.5, pH: 5.0), and the change in the sHsp genes’ expression profile were analyzed. The results showed that TVN0775/sHsp gene expression was more sensitive to increased pH than TVN0984/sHsp gene expression. The TVN0775/sHsp gene transcription induced at most 2.5 fold at pH 4.0 and the gene expression either reduced or did not change at higher pH values (i.e., pH 4.5 and 5.0). On the other hand, TVN0984/sHsp gene expression did not change at pH 4.0 but significantly reduced at higher pH values. The effect of oxidative stress on the expression of TVN0775 and TVN0984 genes was investigated by treatment of Tp. volcanium cells with 0.01 mM, 0.02 mM, 0,03 mM and 0.05 mM H2O2. For both sHsp genes, transcription was induced at lower concentrations of H2O2 (0.01 mM and 0.02 mM). At higher concentrations of H2O2 expression of both genes’ transcription either did not changed or down regulated. Lastly, in this study we have purified the recombinant TVN0775/sHsp, as an Nterminal 6x his-tag fusion to homogeneity on Ni-NTA affinity column. Purified protein samples were used in the chaperone activity assays using bovine glutamate dehydrogenase enzyme (boGDH) as substrate. We have found that the recovery of glutamate dehydrogenase activity at 45°C, 50°C and 53°C in the presence of the Tp. volcanium sHsps was higher than that of spontaneous refolding. Also, TVN0775/sHsp increased the recovery of the boGDH enzyme that was denatured at 2.5 M GdnHCl concentrations for 30 min.