Growth-phase-dependent expression of the lipolytic system of Acinetobacter calcoaceticus BD413: cloning of a gene encoding one of the esterases

J Gen Microbiol. 1993 Oct;139(10):2329-42. doi: 10.1099/00221287-139-10-2329.


Acinetobacter calcoaceticus BD413, when grown in batch culture in nutrient broth, produces both extracellular lipase activity and cell-bound esterase activity during and after the transition between exponential growth and the stationary phase. From a library of A. calcoaceticus DNA in Escherichia coli, plasmids were isolated that enabled E. coli to grow on media with tributyrin as the sole carbon source. Assays with model substrates classified the product of the cloned gene as an esterase. Via deletion analysis, the esterase gene was mapped on a 1.8 kbp chromosomal DNA fragment. This fragment was sequenced and found to contain one open reading frame, termed estA, which encodes a protein of 40.0 kDa. The amino acid sequence of this protein shows homology to a number of lipolytic enzymes, most notably to esterases. Deletion of estA only partially abolished cell-bound esterase activity in A. calcoaceticus, indicating that BD413 forms at least two esterases. Both esterases show the same temporal regulation of expression. beta-Galactosidase activity was measured in strains in which a promoterless lacZ gene was inserted into estA. Induction of lacZ expression in these strains also occurred at the end of exponential growth in batch cultures, indicating that production of the esterase is regulated at the genetic level.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Acinetobacter calcoaceticus / genetics*
  • Acinetobacter calcoaceticus / growth & development*
  • Amino Acid Sequence
  • Base Sequence
  • Cloning, Molecular
  • Escherichia coli / genetics
  • Esterases / genetics*
  • Gene Expression Regulation, Bacterial*
  • Genes, Bacterial*
  • Genetic Vectors
  • Lac Operon
  • Lipolysis / genetics*
  • Molecular Sequence Data
  • Mutation
  • Plasmids
  • Recombinant Fusion Proteins / analysis
  • Restriction Mapping
  • Sequence Analysis, DNA
  • Sequence Deletion
  • Sequence Homology, Amino Acid
  • beta-Galactosidase / genetics


  • Recombinant Fusion Proteins
  • Esterases
  • beta-Galactosidase

Associated data

  • GENBANK/X71598
  • SWISSPROT/P15304
  • SWISSPROT/P18773
  • SWISSPROT/P23872
  • SWISSPROT/P24484