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1.  Malolactic enzyme from Oenococcus oeni 
Bioengineered  2012;4(3):147-152.
Malolactic enzymes (MLE) are known to directly convert L-malic acid into L-lactic acid with a catalytical requirement of nicotinamide adenine dinucleotide (NAD+) and Mn2+; however, the reaction mechanism is still unclear. To study a MLE, the structural gene from Oenococcus oeni strain DSM 20255 was heterologously expressed in Escherichia coli, yielding 22.9 kU l−1 fermentation broth. After affinity chromatography and removal of apparently inactive protein by precipitation, purified recombinant MLE had a specific activity of 280 U mg−1 protein with a recovery of approximately 61%. The enzyme appears to be a homodimer with a molecular mass of 128 kDa consisting of two 64 kDa subunits. Characterization of the recombinant enzyme showed optimum activity at pH 6.0 and 45°C, and Km, Vmax and kcat values of 4.9 mM, 427 U mg−1 and 456 sec−1 for L-malic acid, 91.4 µM, 295 U mg−1 and 315 sec−1 for NAD+ and 4.6 µM, 229 U mg−1 and 244 sec−1 for Mn2+, respectively. The recombinant MLE retained 95% of its activity after 3 mo at room temperature and 7 mo at 4°C. When using pyruvic acid as substrate, the enzyme showed the conversion of pyruvic acid with detectable L-lactate dehydrogenase (L-LDH) activity and oxidation of NADH. This interesting observation might explain that MLE catalyzes a redox reaction and hence, the requirements for NAD+ and Mn2+ during the conversion of L-malic to L-lactic acid.
PMCID: PMC3669155  PMID: 23196745
malolactic enzyme; Oenococcus oeni; Escherichia coli; heterologous expression
2.  Release of wine monoterpenes from natural precursors by glycosidases from Oenococcus oeni 
Food Chemistry  2012;135-334(1):80-87.
► Glycosidases of Oenococcus oeni are able to release terpenes from natural substrates. ► Bacterial glycosidases have a high capacity to release both primary and tertiary terpene alcohols. ► Both glucosidase and arabinosidase from O. oeni are more active in grape juice than glycosidases from Aspergillus niger. ► Riesling mash was treated with O. oeni glycosidases before alcoholic fermentation. ► Wines produced with the glycosidases from O. oeni received positive ratings by a professional panel.
It is now well established that wine-related lactic acid bacteria (LAB), especially Oenococcus oeni, possess glycosidase activities that positively contribute to wine aroma through the hydrolysis of grape-derived aroma precursors. In our recent studies, we have identified and characterised several LAB glycosidases with potential in these terms. Here, we report that both a glucosidase and an arabinosidase from O. oeni can release high amounts of monoterpenes from natural substrates under optimal conditions, indicating that these intracellular enzymes might play a significant role in the hydrolysis of aroma precursors during malolactic fermentation. The enzymes from O. oeni exhibited broad substrate specificities (release of both primary/tertiary terpene alcohols) and were even active in grape juice. Further, a sensory panel clearly preferred enzyme-treated Riesling wines over the controls and affirmed that the glycosidases from O. oeni could improve the typical Riesling aroma.
PMCID: PMC3387370
Oenococcus oeni; Wine; Aroma; Terpene; Glucosidase; Arabinosidase
3.  Heterologous expression of Oenococcus oeni malolactic enzyme in Lactobacillus plantarum for improved malolactic fermentation 
AMB Express  2012;2:19.
Lactobacillus plantarum is involved in a multitude of food related industrial fermentation processes including the malolactic fermentation (MLF) of wine. This work is the first report on a recombinant L. plantarum strain successfully conducting MLF. The malolactic enzyme (MLE) from Oenococcus oeni was cloned into the lactobacillal expression vector pSIP409 which is based on the sakacin P operon of Lactobacillus sakei and expressed in the host strain L. plantarum WCFS1. Both recombinant and wild-type L. plantarum strains were tested for MLF using a buffered malic acid solution in absence of glucose. Under the conditions with L-malic acid as the only energy source and in presence of Mn2+ and NAD+, the recombinant L. plantarum and the wild-type strain converted 85% (2.5 g/l) and 51% (1.5 g/l), respectively, of L-malic acid in 3.5 days. Furthermore, the recombinant L. plantarum cells converted in a modified wine 15% (0.4 g/l) of initial L-malic acid concentration in 2 days. In conclusion, recombinant L. plantarum cells expressing MLE accelerate the malolactic fermentation.
PMCID: PMC3366906  PMID: 22452826
L. plantarum; Oenococcus oeni; Malolactic fermentation; Malolactic enzyme
4.  Characterization of Two Distinct Glycosyl Hydrolase Family 78 α-l-Rhamnosidases from Pediococcus acidilactici▿†  
Applied and Environmental Microbiology  2011;77(18):6524-6530.
α-l-Rhamnosidases play an important role in the hydrolysis of glycosylated aroma compounds (especially terpenes) from wine. Although several authors have demonstrated the enological importance of fungal rhamnosidases, the information on bacterial enzymes in this context is still limited. In order to fill this important gap, two putative rhamnosidase genes (ram and ram2) from Pediococcus acidilactici DSM 20284 were heterologously expressed, and the respective gene products were characterized. In combination with a bacterial β-glucosidase, both enzymes released the monoterpenes linalool and cis-linalool oxide from a muscat wine extract under ideal conditions. Additionally, Ram could release significant amounts of geraniol and citronellol/nerol. Nevertheless, the potential enological value of these enzymes is limited by the strong negative effects of acidity and ethanol on the activities of Ram and Ram2. Therefore, a direct application in winemaking seems unlikely. Although both enzymes are members of the same glycosyl hydrolase family (GH 78), our results clearly suggest the distinct functionalities of Ram and Ram2, probably representing two subclasses within GH 78: Ram could efficiently hydrolyze only the synthetic substrate p-nitrophenyl-α-l-rhamnopyranoside (Vmax = 243 U mg−1). In contrast, Ram2 displayed considerable specificity toward hesperidin (Vmax = 34 U mg−1) and, especially, rutinose (Vmax = 1,200 U mg−1), a disaccharide composed of glucose and rhamnose. Both enzymes were unable to hydrolyze the flavanone glycoside naringin. Interestingly, both enzymes displayed indications of positive substrate cooperativity. This study presents detailed kinetic data on two novel rhamnosidases, which could be relevant for the further study of bacterial glycosidases.
PMCID: PMC3187141  PMID: 21784921

Results 1-4 (4)