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Open Access Original article

Degradation of Poly(ε-caprolactone) by thermophilic Streptomyces thermoviolaceus subsp. thermoviolaceus 76T-2

Te-Kuan Chua1, Min Tseng2 and Mei-Kwei Yang1*

Author Affiliations

1 Department of Life Science, Fu Jen University, Hsin Chuang, Taipei, Taiwan

2 Bioresource Collection and Research Center, Food Industry Research and Development Institute, Hsinchu, Taiwan

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AMB Express 2013, 3:8  doi:10.1186/2191-0855-3-8

Published: 29 January 2013

Abstract

A thermophilic Streptomyces thermoviolaceus subsp. thermoviolaceus isolate 76T-2 that can degrade poly(ε-caprolactone) (PCL) was isolated from soil in Taiwan. Isolate 76T-2 grew well in urea fructose oatmeal medium and exhibited clear zones on agar plates containing PCL, indicating the presence of extracellular PCL depolymerases. The PCL powder present in culture medium was completely degraded within 6 h of culture at 45°C. Two PCL-degrading enzymes were purified to homogeneity from the culture supernatant. The molecular weights of these two enzymes were estimated to be 25 kDa and 55 kDa, respectively. A portion of the N-terminal region of the 25-kDa protein was determined, and the sequence Ala-Asn-Phe-Val-Val-Ser-Glu-Ala thus obtained was identical to that of A64-A71 of the Chi25 chitinase of Streptomyces thermoviolaceus OPC-520. The 25-kDa protein was shown to also degrade chitin, suggesting that isolate 76T-2 has the ability to degrade both PCL and chitin.

Keywords:
Poly(ε-caprolactone) (PCL); Streptomyces thermoviolaceus subsp. thermoviolaceus; PCL depolymerases; Chi25 chitinase