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CNRS Université de Bordeaux Solvay


Accueil > Publications > 2016

Droplet millifluidics for kinetic study of transketolase

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We present a continuous-flow reactor at the millifluidic scale coupled with an online, non-intrusive spectroscopic monitoring method for determining the kinetic parameters of an enzyme, transketolase (TK) used in biocatalysis for the synthesis of polyols by carboligation. The millifluidic system used is based on droplet flow, a well-established method for kinetic chemical data acquisition. The TK assay is based on the direct quantitative measurement of bicarbonate ions released during the transketolase-catalysed reaction in the presence of hydroxypyruvic acid as the donor, thanks to an irreversible reaction : bicarbonate ions react with phosphoenolpyruvate (PEP) in the presence of PEP carboxylase as the first auxiliary enzyme. The oxaloacetate formed is reduced to malate by NADH in the reaction catalysed by malate dehydrogenase as the second auxiliary enzyme. The extent of oxidation of NADH was measured by spectrophotometry at 340 nm. This system gives a direct, quantitative, generic method to evaluate the TK activity versus different substrates. We demonstrate the accuracy of this strategy to determine the enzymatic kinetic parameters and to study the substrate specificity of a thermostable TK from thermophilic microorganism Geobacillus stearothermophilus, offering promising prospects in biocatalysis. Millifluidic systems are useful in this regard as they can be used to rapidly evaluate the TK activity towards various substrates, and also different sets of conditions, identifying the optimal operating environment while minimizing resource consumption and ensuring high control over the operating conditions.

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