Using genetic techniques the contribution of surface loops to the thermal stability of Bacillus subtilis neutral protease (NP-sub) was studied. Mutations were designed to make the surface of NP-sub more similar to the surface of more thermostable neutral proteases such as thermolysin (TLN). The mutations included the replacement of an irregular loop by a shorter variant and the introduction of a ten-residue β-hairpin. In general, these drastic mutations had little effect on the production and activity of NP-sub, indicating the feasibility of major structural rearrangements at the surface of proteins. In the most stable mutant, exhibiting an increase in thermal stability of 1.1°C, ~10% of the surface of NP-sub was modified. Several NP-sub variants carrying multiple mutations were constructed. Non-additive effects on thermal stability were observed, which were interpreted on the basis of a model for thermal inactivation, that emphasizes the importance of local unfolding processes for thermal stability.
|Number of pages||6|
|Publication status||Published - 1994|
- Neutral protease
- Thermal stability
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Molecular Biology
- Immunology and Microbiology(all)