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Protein Expr Purif. 2003 Jan;27(1):186-93.

Expression, purification, crystallization, and preliminary X-ray analysis of recombinant human saposin B.

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Department of Medical Biophysics, University of Toronto, 610 University Avenue, Toronto, Ont., Canada M5G 2M9.


Saposin B (also known as cerebroside sulfate activator or CSAct) is a small non-enzymatic glycoprotein required for the breakdown of cerebroside sulfates (sulfatides) in lysosomes. Saposin B contains three intramolecular disulfide bridges, exists as a dimer and is remarkably heat, protease, and pH stable. We have expressed the protein in a thioredoxin reductase deficient strain of Escherichia coli and purified the protein by heat treatment, followed by ion-exchange, gel filtration, and hydrophobic interaction chromatographies. The protein is properly folded as judged by the observed disulfide bond topology, the hydrogen-deuterium exchange rate, and the level of stimulation of sulfatide hydrolysis by arylsulfatase A. Crystals of human saposin B were grown by vapor diffusion and diffract to a resolution of 2.2A. Despite obtaining only merohedrally twinned P3(1) native crystals, an untwined seleomethionine-substituted crystal belonging to space group P3(1)21 was also grown. The three-dimensional structure of saposin B protein will provide insights into how this 79 amino acid protein is able to solubilize relatively large membrane-bound lipid ligands.

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