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Identification and Characterization of Genes From Streptomyces Sp. Strain K30 Responsible for Clear Zone Formation on Natural Rubber Latex and poly(cis-1,4-isoprene) Rubber Degradation

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Identification and Characterization of Genes From Streptomyces Sp. Strain K30 Responsible for Clear Zone Formation on Natural Rubber Latex and poly(cis-1,4-isoprene) Rubber Degradation

Karsten Rose et al. Biomacromolecules.

Abstract

Streptomyces sp. strain K30 was isolated from soil next to a city high way in Münster (Germany) according to its ability to degrade natural and synthetic poly(cis-1,4-isoprene) rubber and to form clear zones on natural rubber latex agar plates. The clear zone forming phenotype was used to clone the responsible gene by phenotypic complementation of a clear zone negative mutant. An open reading frame (lcp) of 1,191 bp was identified, which was preceded by a putative signal sequence and restored the capability to form clear zones on natural rubber latex in the mutant. The putative translation product exhibited strong homologies (50% aa identity) to a putative secreted protein from Streptomyces coelicolor strain A3(2), another clear zone forming strain. Heterologous expression of lcp of Streptomyces sp. strain K30 in Streptomyces lividans strain TK23 enabled the latter to form clear zones on latex-overlay agar plates and to accumulate a degradation product of about 12 kDa containing aldehyde groups. Two ORFs putatively encoding a heterodimeric molybdenum hydroxylase (oxiAB) were identified downstream of lcp in Streptomyces sp. strain K30 strain which exerted a positive effect on clear zone formation and enabled the strain to oxidize the resulting aldehydes. Heterologous expression of a fragment harboring lcp plus oxiAB in S. lividans TK23 resulted in accumulation of aldehydes only in the presence of 10 mM tungstate. Determination of protein content during cultivation on poly(cis-1,4-isoprene) revealed an increase of the cellular protein, and gel permeation chromatography analysis indicated a shift of the molecular weight distribution of the rubber to lower values in the transgenic S. lividans strains and in the wild type, thus confirming utilization and degradation of rubber. Therefore, for the first time, genes responsible for clear zone formation on natural rubber latex and synthetic cis-1,4-polyisoprene degradation in Gram-positive bacteria were identified and characterized.

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