Effect of PEG molecular weight and linking chemistry on the biological activity and thermal stability of PEGylated trypsin

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Abstract

PEGylated proteins are routinely used as therapeutics, but systematic studies of the effect of PEG molecular weight and linking chemistry on the biological activity and particularly the thermal stability of the conjugated protein are rarely made. Here, activated monomethoxypolyethylene glycol (mPEG)s (Mw 1100, 2000 and 5000 g/mol) were prepared using succinic anhydride (SA), cyanuric chloride (CC) or tosyl chloride (TC) and used to synthesise a library of trypsin conjugates. The enzyme activity (KM, Vmax and Kcat) of native trypsin and the mPEG-modified trypsin conjugates was compared using N-benzoyl-l-arginine p-nitroanilide (BAPNA) as a substrate, and their thermal stability determined using both BAPNA and N-α-benzoyl-l-arginine ethyl ester hydrochloride (BAEE) as substrates to measure amidase and esterase activity respectively. The effect of conjugate chemistry on trypsin autolysis was also examined at 40 °C. PEG-trypsin conjugates containing the higher molecular weight of mPEG (5000 g/mol) were more stable than free trypsin, and the conjugate containing CC-mPEG 5000 g/mol had the best thermal stability.

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