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Efficient Expression of Aquaporin Z in Escherichia coli Cell-Free System Using Different Fusion Vectors

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Aquaporin Z (AqpZ) is a typical orthodox aquaporin with 6 transmembrane domains and five connecting loops. In order to express this complex membrane protein efficiently, E. coli cell-free expression system was employed as an alternative to produce aquaporin Z. Using different fusion vectors containing AqpZ gene, the expression level of fusion proteins in cell-free system varied from 7.97 to 578.35 μg/ml, while 7.34 to 340.81 μg/ml for target protein (AqpZ). The free energy of mRNA secondary structure at translation initiation region (TIR) was predicted and demonstrated a positive relationship with the expression level of AqpZ in cell-free system. This is the first report of expressing water channel protein in E. coli cell-free system, which has become a highly promising tool for fast and efficient production of integral membrane proteins.

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Keywords: Aquaporin; Aquaporin Z; Cell-free expression system; Membrane protein; mRNA secondary structure

Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: 2010-02-01

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  • Protein & Peptide Letters publishes short papers in all important aspects of protein and peptide research, including structural studies, recombinant expression, function, synthesis, enzymology, immunology, molecular modeling, drug design etc. Manuscripts must have a significant element of novelty, timeliness and urgency that merit rapid publication. Reports of crystallisation, and preliminary structure determinations of biologically important proteins are acceptable. Purely theoretical papers are also acceptable provided they provide new insight into the principles of protein/peptide structure and function.
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