PpEst is a novel PBAT degrading polyesterase identified by proteomic screening of Pseudomonas pseudoalcaligenes

Appl Microbiol Biotechnol. 2017 Mar;101(6):2291-2303. doi: 10.1007/s00253-016-7992-8. Epub 2016 Nov 21.


A novel esterase, PpEst, that hydrolyses the co-aromatic-aliphatic polyester poly(1,4-butylene adipate-co-terephthalate) (PBAT) was identified by proteomic screening of the Pseudomonas pseudoalcaligenes secretome. PpEst was induced by the presence of PBAT in the growth media and had predicted arylesterase (EC activity. PpEst showed polyesterase activity on both whole and milled PBAT film releasing terephthalic acid and 4-(4-hydroxybutoxycarbonyl)benzoic acid while end product inhibition by 4-(4-hydroxybutoxycarbonyl)benzoic acid was observed. Modelling of an aromatic polyester mimicking oligomer into the PpEst active site indicated that the binding pocket could be big enough to accommodate large polymers. This is the first report of a PBAT degrading enzyme being identified by proteomic screening and shows that this approach can contribute to the discovery of new polymer hydrolysing enzymes. Moreover, these results indicate that arylesterases could be an interesting enzyme class for identifications of polyesterases.

Keywords: Arylesterase; Poly(1,4-butylene adipate-co-terephthalate) (PBAT); Polyesterase; Polymer degradation; Proteomics; Secretome.

MeSH terms

  • Bacterial Proteins / chemistry*
  • Bacterial Proteins / genetics
  • Bacterial Proteins / metabolism
  • Biodegradable Plastics / chemistry
  • Biodegradable Plastics / metabolism*
  • Carboxylic Ester Hydrolases / chemistry*
  • Carboxylic Ester Hydrolases / genetics
  • Carboxylic Ester Hydrolases / metabolism
  • Catalytic Domain
  • Gene Expression
  • Models, Molecular
  • Phthalic Acids / chemistry
  • Phthalic Acids / metabolism
  • Polyesters / chemistry
  • Polyesters / metabolism*
  • Protein Binding
  • Proteomics
  • Pseudomonas pseudoalcaligenes / enzymology*
  • Pseudomonas pseudoalcaligenes / genetics


  • Bacterial Proteins
  • Biodegradable Plastics
  • Phthalic Acids
  • Polyesters
  • poly(butylene adipate-co-butylene terephthalate)
  • terephthalic acid
  • Carboxylic Ester Hydrolases
  • arylesterase