Synthesis, cloning and expression of an antifungal peptide, ESF1, in saccharomyces cerevisiae.
ESF1 is a 2.052 kDa antimicrobial peptide, mimicking the charge distribution and amphipathic alpha-helical structure of magainin, pGLa, a naturally occurring antimicrobial peptide. ESF1 has been reported to display high activity against Fusarium oxysporum f. sp lycopersici and F. oxysporum f. sp cubense race 4, the tomato and banana crop plant, wilt-causing pathogens, respectively. To assess whether this synthetic peptide can be heterologously expressed in yeast in significant quantities, and still retain full bioactivity, within a eukaryotic system, the ESF1 gene was designed and synthesized from five oligonucleotides, and cloned into pUC18. From the pUC18/ESF1 recombinant plasmid, the ESF1 gene sequence was amplified and cloned into the pBluescript-based vector, pVD4, downstream of the yeast pheromone mating factor alpha (MFa1) promoter, and in frame with the MFa1 signal peptide sequence for expression and secretion in yeast. The expression cassette comprising the MFa1 promoter and signal peptide sequence, and ESF1 gene was subsequently cloned into the yeast/ E. coli shuttle vector, pTG3828 and transformed into Saccharomyces cerevisiae. Chicken IgY antibodies against ESF1 peptide were raised and immunoaffinity purified. Following this, western dot blot analysis and mass spectrometry confirmed the presence of ESF1 in partial HPLC purified fractions of the recombinant yeast culture supernatant.