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Hooks D.O.,Massey University | Rehm B.H.A.,Massey University | Rehm B.H.A.,MacDiarmid Institute for Advanced Materials and Nanotechnology | Rehm B.H.A.,PolyBatics Ltd
Applied Microbiology and Biotechnology | Year: 2015

The polyhydroxyalkanoate (PHA) synthase catalyzes the synthesis of PHA and remains attached to the hydrophobic PHA inclusions it creates. Although this feature is actively exploited to generate functionalized biobeads via protein engineering, little is known about the structure of the PHA synthase. Here, the surface topology of Ralstonia eutropha PHA synthase was probed to inform rational protein engineering toward the production of functionalized PHA beads. Surface-exposed residues were detected by conjugating biotin to inclusion-bound PHA synthase and identifying the biotin-conjugated lysine and cysteine residues using peptide fingerprinting analysis. The identified sites (K77, K90, K139, C382, C459, and K518) were investigated as insertion sites for the generation of new protein fusions. Insertions of FLAG epitopes into exposed sites K77, K90, K139, and K518 were tolerated, retaining >65 % of in vivo activity. Sites K90, K139, and K518 were also tested by insertion of the immunoglobulin G (IgG)-binding domain (ZZ), successfully producing PHA inclusions able to bind human IgG in vitro. Although simultaneous insertions of the ZZ domain into two sites was permissive, insertion at all three lysine sites inactivated the synthase. The K90/K139 double ZZ insertion had the optimum IgG-binding capacity of 16 mg IgG/g wet PHA beads and could selectively purify the IgG fraction from human serum. Overall, this study identified surface-exposed flexible regions of the PHA synthase which either tolerate protein/peptide insertions or are critical for protein function. This further elucidates the structure and function of PHA synthase and provides new opportunities for generating functionalized PHA biobeads. © 2015, Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg. Source

Parlane N.A.,Agresearch Ltd. | Chen S.,Massey University | Jones G.J.,Animal and Plant Health Agency | Vordermeier H.M.,Animal and Plant Health Agency | And 5 more authors.
Clinical and Vaccine Immunology | Year: 2016

The tuberculin skin test is the primary screening test for the diagnosis of bovine tuberculosis (TB), and use of this test has been very valuable in the control of this disease in many countries. However, the test lacks specificity when cattle have been exposed to environmental mycobacteria or vaccinated with Mycobacterium bovis bacille Calmette-Guérin (BCG). Recent studies showed that the use of three or four recombinant mycobacterial proteins, including 6-κDa early secretory antigenic target (ESAT6), 10-κDa culture filtrate protein (CFP10), Rv3615c, and Rv3020c, or a peptide cocktail derived from those proteins, in the skin test greatly enhanced test specificity, with minimal loss of test sensitivity. The proteins are present in members of the pathogenic Mycobacterium tuberculosis complex but are absent in or not expressed by the majority of environmental mycobacteria and the BCG vaccine strain. To produce a low-cost skin test reagent, the proteins were displayed at high density on polyester beads through translational fusion to a polyhydroxyalkanoate synthase that mediates the formation of antigen-displaying inclusions in recombinant Escherichia coli. Display of the proteins on the polyester beads greatly increased their immunogenicity, allowing for the use of very low concentrations of proteins (0.1 to 3 μg of mycobacterial protein/inoculum) in the skin test. Polyester beads simultaneously displaying all four proteins were produced in a single fermentation process. The polyester beads displaying three or four mycobacterial proteins were shown to have high sensitivity for detection of M. Bovis-infected cattle and induced minimal responses in animals exposed to environmental mycobacteria or vaccinated with BCG. Copyright © 2016, American Society for Microbiology. All Rights Reserved. Source

The invention relates to a method for producing biodegradable, functionalised polymer particles, and to the use of the same as medicament carriers.

Hay I.D.,PolyBatics Ltd | Hay I.D.,Monash University | Du J.,PolyBatics Ltd | Du J.,Massey University | And 4 more authors.
Applied and Environmental Microbiology | Year: 2015

Proof of concept for the in vivo bacterial production of a polyester resin displaying various customizable affinity protein binding domains is provided. This was achieved by engineering various protein binding domains into a bacterial polyester-synthesizing enzyme. Affinity binding domains based on various structural folds and derived from molecular libraries were used to demonstrate the potential of this technique. Designed ankyrin repeat proteins (DARPins), engineered OB-fold domains (OBodies), and VHH domains from camelid antibodies (nanobodies) were employed. The respective resins were produced in a single bacterial fermentation step, and a simple purification protocol was developed. Purified resins were suitable for most lab-scale affinity chromatography purposes. All of the affinity domains tested produced polyester beads with specific affinity for the target protein. The binding capacity of these affinity resins ranged from 90 to 600 nmol of protein per wet gram of polyester affinity resin, enabling purification of a recombinant protein target from a complex bacterial cell lysate up to a purity level of 96% in one step. The polyester resin was efficiently produced by conventional lab-scale shake flask fermentation, resulting in bacteria accumulating up to 55% of their cellular dry weight as polyester. A further proof of concept demonstrating the practicality of this technique was obtained through the intracellular coproduction of a specific affinity resin and its target. This enables in vivo binding and purification of the coproduced "target protein." Overall, this study provides evidence for the use of molecular engineering of polyester synthases toward the microbial production of specific bioseparation resins implementing previously selected binding domains. © 2015, American Society for Microbiology. Source

Martinez-Donato G.,Center for Genetic Engineering and Biotechnology | Piniella B.,Center for Genetic Engineering and Biotechnology | Aguilar D.,Center for Genetic Engineering and Biotechnology | Olivera S.,Center for Genetic Engineering and Biotechnology | And 11 more authors.
Clinical and Vaccine Immunology | Year: 2016

Hepatitis C virus (HCV) infection is a major worldwide problem. Chronic hepatitis C is recognized as one of the major causes of cirrhosis, hepatocellular carcinoma, and liver failure. Although new, directly acting antiviral therapies are suggested to overcome the low efficacy and adverse effects observed for the current standard of treatment, an effective vaccine would be the only way to certainly eradicate HCV infection. Recently, polyhydroxybutyrate beads produced by engineered Escherichia coli showed efficacy as a vaccine delivery system. Here, an endotoxin-free E. coli strain (ClearColi) was engineered to produce polyhydroxybutyrate beads displaying the core antigen on their surface (Beads-Core) and their immunogenicity was evaluated in BALB/c mice. Immunization with Beads-Core induced gamma interferon (IFN-γ) secretion and a functional T cell immune response against the HCV Core protein. With the aim to target broad T and B cell determinants described for HCV, Beads-Core mixed with HCV E1, E2, and NS3 recombinant proteins was also evaluated in BALB/c mice. Remarkably, only three immunization with Beads-Core+CoE1E2NS3/Alum (a mixture of 0.1 μg Co.120, 16.7 μg E1.340, 16.7 μg E2.680, and 10 μg NS3 adjuvanted in aluminum hydroxide [Alum]) induced a potent antibody response against E1 and E2 and a broad IFN-γ secretion and T cell response against Core and all coadministered antigens. This immunological response mediated protective immunity to viremia as assessed in a viral surrogate challenge model. Overall, it was shown that engineered biopolyester beads displaying foreign antigens are immunogenic and might present a particulate delivery system suitable for vaccination against HCV. © 2016, American Society for Microbiology. All Rights Reserved. Source

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