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J Bacteriol. 2007 Feb;189(3):779-88. Epub 2006 Dec 1.

Family shuffling of soil DNA to change the regiospecificity of Burkholderia xenovorans LB400 biphenyl dioxygenase.

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Institut national de la recherche scientifique (INRS-Institut Armand-Frappier), 245 Boul. Hymus, Pointe-Claire, Québec, Canada H9R 1G6.


Previous work has shown that the C-terminal portion of BphA, especially two amino acid segments designated region III and region IV, influence the regiospecificity of the biphenyl dioxygenase (BPDO) toward 2,2'-dichlorobiphenyl (2,2'-CB). In this work, we evolved BPDO by shuffling bphA genes amplified from polychlorinated biphenyl-contaminated soil DNA. Sets of approximately 1-kb DNA fragments were amplified with degenerate primers designed to amplify the C-terminal portion of bphA. These fragments were shuffled, and the resulting library was used to replace the corresponding fragment of Burkholderia xenovorans LB400 bphA. Variants were screened for their ability to oxygenate 2,2'-CB onto carbons 5 and 6, which are positions that LB400 BPDO is unable to attack. Variants S100, S149, and S151 were obtained and exhibited this feature. Variant S100 BPDO produced exclusively cis-5,6-dihydro-5,6-dihydroxy-2,2'-dichlorobiphenyl from 2,2'-CB. Moreover, unlike LB400 BPDO, S100 BphA catalyzed the oxygenation of 2,2',3,3'-tetrachlorobiphenyl onto carbons 5 and 6 exclusively and it was unable to oxygenate 2,2',5,5'-tetrachlorobiphenyl. Based on oxygen consumption measurements, variant S100 oxygenated 2,2'-CB at a rate of 16 +/- 1 nmol min(-1) per nmol enzyme, which was similar to the value observed for LB400 BPDO. cis-5,6-Dihydro-5,6-dihydroxy-2,2'-dichlorobiphenyl was further oxidized by 2,3-dihydro-2,3-dihydroxybiphenyl dehydrogenase (BphB) and 2,3-dihydroxybiphenyl dioxygenase (BphC). Variant S100 was, in addition, able to oxygenate benzene, toluene, and ethyl benzene. Sequence analysis identified amino acid residues M237 S238 and S283 outside regions III and IV that influence the activity toward doubly ortho-substituted chlorobiphenyls.

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