Rapid Bioinformatic Identification of Thermostabilizing Mutations.
Sauer DB., Karpowich NK., Song JM., Wang D-N.
Ex vivo stability is a valuable protein characteristic but is laborious to improve experimentally. In addition to biopharmaceutical and industrial applications, stable protein is important for biochemical and structural studies. Taking advantage of the large number of available genomic sequences and growth temperature data, we present two bioinformatic methods to identify a limited set of amino acids or positions that likely underlie thermostability. Because these methods allow thousands of homologs to be examined in silico, they have the advantage of providing both speed and statistical power. Using these methods, we introduced, via mutation, amino acids from thermoadapted homologs into an exemplar mesophilic membrane protein, and demonstrated significantly increased thermostability while preserving protein activity.