Purification and characterization of lanatoside 15′-O-acetylesterase from Digitalis lanata Ehrh.
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Lanatoside 15′-O-acetylesterase (LAE) from in-vitro-cultivated cells of Digitalis lanata Ehrh. was isolated and partially sequenced. The enzyme was extracted with citrate buffer from acetone dry powder. It was purified in a two-step chromatographical procedure including Phenyl Sepharose hydrophobic interaction chromatography followed by CM Sepharose cation-exchange chromatography to more than 330 μmol · s−1 · (g protein)−1. Sodium dodecyl sulfate-polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis (SDS-PAGE) of the purified protein showed a major band at 39 kDa. The protein was identified by correlation of band intensity on SDS-PAGE and enzyme activity of CM Sepharose column fractions. Size-exclusion chromatography on Sephacryl 200 revealed a single activity peak with an apparent molecular mass of about 85 kDa. Electrophoresis under nondenaturating conditions of purified LAE showed only one band with esterase activity. The intensity of this band was correlated with that of the 39-kDa band after SDS-PAGE. About 30% of the protein, including the N-terminus and several fragments obtained by Lys-C protease digestion, was sequenced. A fragment obtained by Lys-C digestion showed partial homology to other hydrolases and apoplasmic proteins. It included the probable location of an active-site histidine. The activity of LAE was high in non-morphogenic D. lanata cell strains selected for high activities in the chemical transformation of cardenolides, but rather low in the proembryogenic masses of the embryogenic cell strain VIII. It increased during the development of somatic embryos. The LAE activity in leaves of D. lanata plants was in the range 4–24 nmol · s−1 · (g protein)−1.
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