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Received April 17, 2008; Revision received May 13, 2008
New determinants of Thermoactinomyces vulgaris carboxypeptidase T (CPT) substrate specificity--structural calcium ions and Leu254 residue--were found by means of steady-state kinetics and site-directed mutagenesis. The removal of calcium ions shifted the selectivity profile of hydrolysis of tripeptide substrates with C-terminal Leu, Glu, and Arg from 64/1.7/1 to 162/1.3/1. Substitution of the hydrophobic Leu254 in CPT for polar Asn did not change hydrolysis efficiency of substrates with C-terminal Leu and Arg, but resulted in more than 28-fold decrease in activity towards the substrate with C-terminal Glu. It is shown that the His68 residue is not a structural determinant of CPT specificity.
KEY WORDS: carboxypeptidase T, substrate specificity, rational redesign, protein engineering, site-directed mutagenesis