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Production Of A Novel N-terminal PEGylated Crisantaspase.

Karin Torres-Obreque, Giovanna Pastore Meneguetti, Débora Fernandes Custodio, Gisele Monteiro, Adalberto Pessoa-Júnior, Carlota de Oliveira Rangel-Yagui
Published 2018 · Medicine, Biology
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Crisantaspase is an asparaginase enzyme produced by Erwinia chrysanthemi and used to treat acute lymphoblastic leukemia (ALL) in case of hypersensitivity to Escherichia coli l-asparaginase (ASNase). The main disadvantages of crisantaspase are the short half-life (10 H) and immunogenicity. In this sense, its PEGylated form (PEG-crisantaspase) could not only reduce immunogenicity but also improve plasma half-life. In this work, we developed a process to obtain a site-specific N-terminal PEGylated crisantaspase (PEG-crisantaspase). Crisantaspase was recombinantly expressed in E. coli BL21(DE3) strain cultivated in a shaker and in a 2-L bioreactor. Volumetric productivity in bioreactor increased 37% compared to shaker conditions (460 and 335 U L-1  H-1 , respectively). Crisantaspase was extracted by osmotic shock and purified by cation exchange chromatography, presenting specific activity of 694 U mg-1 , 21.7 purification fold, and yield of 69%. Purified crisantaspase was PEGylated with 10 kDa methoxy polyethylene glycol-N-hydroxysuccinimidyl (mPEG-NHS) at different pH values (6.5-9.0). The highest N-terminal pegylation yield (50%) was at pH 7.5 with the lowest poly-PEGylation ratio (7%). PEG-crisantaspase was purified by size exclusion chromatography and presented a KM value three times higher than crisantaspase (150 and 48.5 μM, respectively). Nonetheless, PEG-crisantaspase was found to be more stable at high temperatures and over longer periods of time. In 2 weeks, crisantaspase lost 93% of its specific activity, whereas PEG-crisantaspase was stable for 20 days. Therefore, the novel PEG-crisantaspase enzyme represents a promising biobetter alternative for the treatment of ALL.
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