SUMMARY: The coding and regulatory sequences of the agarase gene of A3(2) were cloned in 66 on the plasmid vector pIJ61, resulting in a several hundredfold increase in the production of the secreted protein. Subcloning experiments localized the sequences required for agarase production and for the mediation of carbon catabolite repression to a segment of about 1·2 kb. A simple protein purification procedure that uses affinity binding of agarase to agarose beads was developed. Preliminary characterization of the enzyme, together with the results of transcription-translation studies, suggest that the intracellular form of agarase (about 34 kDa) possesses a signal sequence that is cleaved upon secretion across the cell membrane to produce an extracellular protein of about 29 kDa.


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