Optimization of transplastomic production of hemicellulases in tobacco: effects of expression cassette configuration and tobacco cultivar used as production platform on recombinant.

Kolotilin, I., Kaldis, A., Pereira, E.O., Laberge, S., and Menassa, R. (2013). "Optimization of transplastomic production of hemicellulases in tobacco: effects of expression cassette configuration and tobacco cultivar used as production platform on recombinant.", Biotechnology for Biofuels, 6(65), pp. 1-15.

Abstract

Background: Chloroplast transformation in tobacco has been used extensively to produce recombinant proteins and enzymes. Chloroplast expression cassettes can be designed with different configurations of the cis-acting elements that govern foreign gene expression. With the aim to optimize production of recombinant hemicellulases in transplastomic tobacco, we developed a set of cassettes that incorporate elements known to facilitate protein expression in chloroplasts and examined expression and accumulation of a bacterial xylanase XynA. Biomass production is another important factor in achieving sustainable and high-volume production of cellulolytic enzymes. Therefore, we compared productivity of two tobacco cultivars – a low-alkaloid and a high-biomass - as transplastomic expression platforms. Results: Four different cassettes expressing XynA produced various mutant phenotypes of the transplastomic plants, affected their growth rate and resulted in different accumulation levels of the XynA enzyme. The most productive cassette was identified and used further to express XynA and two additional fungal xylanases, Xyn10A and Xyn11B, in a high-biomass tobacco cultivar. The high biomass cultivar allowed for a 60% increase in XynA production per plant. Accumulation of the fungal enzymes reached more than 10-fold higher levels than the bacterial enzyme, constituting up to 6% of the total soluble protein in the leaf tissue. Use of a well-characterized translational enhancer with the selected expression cassette revealed inconsistent effects on accumulation of the recombinant xylanases. Additionally, differences in the enzymatic activity of crude plant extracts measured in leaves of different age suggest presence of a specific xylanase inhibitor in the green leaf tissue. Conclusion: Our results demonstrate the pivotal importance of the expression cassette design and appropriate tobacco cultivar for high-level transplastomic production of recombinant proteins.

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