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Purification and characterisation of a fructosyltransferase from Rhodotorula sp.

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The present work was devoted to investigations concerning the purification and characterisation of the fructooligosaccharide (FOS)-producing extracellular enzyme of Rhodotorula sp. LEB-V10. FOS are functional food ingredients showing prebiotic properties, meaning that it could stimulate selectively the growth and/or activity of probiotic bacteria in the gut. The purification of the enzyme was carried out according to the following sequential procedure: cell separation by centrifugation, recovering by ethanol precipitation and purification by anion exchange chromatography. The molecular weight was estimated to be 170 kDa by preparative gel filtration and 77 kDa by sodium dodecyl sulphate–polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis, signifying that the native enzyme exists as a dimer. With sucrose as substrate, the data failed to fit the Michaelis–Menten behaviour, rather showing a sigmoid shape similar to that of the allosteric enzymes (cooperative behaviour), requiring high sucrose concentrations to obtain high reaction rates. The enzyme showed both fructofuranosidase (FA) and fructosyl-transferase (FTA) activities. The optimum pH and temperature for FA activity were found to be around 4.0 and 72–75°C, respectively, while FTA showed optimum activity at pH 4.5 and 65–70°C. Both activities were very stable at temperatures below 66°C, while for FA, the enzyme was more stable at pH 4.0 and for FTA at pH 5.0.

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The authors thank FAPESP, CNPQ and CAPES for their financial support.

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Correspondence to Saartje Hernalsteens.

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Hernalsteens, S., Maugeri, F. Purification and characterisation of a fructosyltransferase from Rhodotorula sp.. Appl Microbiol Biotechnol 79, 589 (2008).

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  • Rhodotorula sp.
  • Fructooligosaccharides
  • Enzyme characterisation
  • Enzyme kinetics