Extremophiles : life under extreme conditions

Enlarging the substrate portfolio of the thermophilic esterase EST2 from Alicyclobacillus acidocaldarius.

PMID 26216109


The enzymatic regioselective hydrolysis of (a) acetylated mono- to tetrasaccharides of different nature, (b) of acetylated aryl glycosides and (c) of different acetylated nucleosides was studied enlarging the portfolio of substrates that can be employed by the thermophilic esterase EST2 from Alicyclobacillus acidocaldarius. The reactions were optimised to the extent that the amount of enzyme needed was lowered of two orders of magnitude with respect to the previously reported reactions, namely from 4000 to 40 U of enzyme per reaction. New additional solvents were screened and dramatic changes in regioselectivity were observed depending on the amount and type of solvent used. For example, in the presence of 10 % DMF, only two α-D-glucose products 6-OH and 4,6-OH (in a 76:24 ratio) were detected, whereas with 25 % DMF, at least four products of similar amount were observed. This versatility adds specific value to the biocatalyst making possible the design of biocatalytic reactions with different hydrophobic ester substrates. As an additional remarkable example, EST2 catalysed with a good yield and high regioselectivity the hydrolysis of p-nitrophenyl β-D-xylopyranoside triacetate producing only the monoacetylated derivative with acetyl group in 3-O-position, in 2 min. The results with nucleosides as substrates are particularly interesting. The peracetates of 3',5'-di-O-acetylthymidine are converted almost quantitatively (95 %) to the monoacetylated derivative possessing free secondary OH; this regioselectivity is complementary to hydrolysis/alcoholysis reactions catalysed by CAL-B lipase or to other microbial hydrolytic biocatalysts, generally giving products with free primary OH groups. A docking analysis was undertaken with all analysed substrates suggesting a structural interpretation of the results. In most of cases, the best pose of the selected substrate was in line with the observed regioselectivity.