Extremophiles and Biotechnology

Study on thermophilic serine hydroxymethyl transferases.

Lennart Meijerink , student from the Hanze University of Applied Sciences in Groningen, has successfully completed his bachelor thesis project on the study of thermophilic serine hydroxymethyl transferases (SHMTs).

Lennart Meijerink
Lennart Meijerink

Lennart worked on the determination of temperature and pH optima and heat stability of three putative thermophilic SHMTs arising from different (meta)genomic resources. Two candidates were identified in the genome of Thermovirga lienii, the third candidate originated from a metagenomic library obtained from a deep and hot oil production well in the North Sea. The recombinant proteins were purified and characterized with enzymatic assays to determine the optimal temperature and pH as well as the residual activity after heat-treatment. Thermostable SHMTs are potentially useful due to their broad substrate range and pivotal role in the one-carbon metabolism, producing important precursors for antibiotics and immunosuppressants.