In the present study, the use of Rhodococcus erythropolis mutant strain RG9 expressing the cytochrome P450 BM3 mutant M02 enzyme has been evaluated for whole-cell biotransformation of a 17-ketosteroid, norandrostenedione, as a model substrate. Purified P450 BM3 mutant M02 enzyme hydroxylated the steroid with >95 % regioselectivity to form 16-β-OH norandrostenedione, as confirmed by NMR analysis. Whole cells of R. erythropolis RG9 expressing P450 BM3 M02 enzyme also converted norandrostenedione into the 16-β-hydroxylated product, resulting in the formation of about 0.35 g/L. Whole cells of strain RG9 itself did not convert norandrostenedione, indicating that metabolite formation is P450 BM3 M02 enzyme mediated. This study shows that R. erythropolis is a novel and interesting host for the heterologous expression of highly selective and active P450 BM3 M02 enzyme variants able to perform steroid bioconversions.
- Cytochrome P450 BM3 M02 enzyme
- Rhodococcus erythropolis
- Whole-cell bioconversion