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Versatile cell-free protein synthesis systems based on chinese hamster ovary cells

: Thoring, L.; Kubick, S.


Hacker, D.L.:
Recombinant protein expression in mammalian cells : Methods and protocols
New York: Humana Press, 2018 (Methods in molecular biology 1850)
ISBN: 978-1-4939-8729-0
ISBN: 978-1-4939-8730-6
Book Article
Fraunhofer IZI ()

We present an alternative production platform for the synthesis of complex proteins. Apart from conventionally applied protein production using engineered mammalian cell lines, this protocol describes the preparation and principle of cell-free protein synthesis systems based on CHO cell lysates. The CHO cell-free system contains endogenous microsomes derived from the endoplasmic reticulum, which enables a direct integration of membrane proteins into a nature like milieu and the introduction of posttranslational modifications. Different steps of system development are described including the cultivation of CHO cells, cell harvesting and cell disruption to prepare translationally active CHO cell lysates. The requirements for DNA templates and the generation of linear DNA templates suitable for the CHO cell-free reaction is further depicted to underline the opportunity to produce different protein variants in a short period. This experimental setup provides a basis for hig h-throughput applications. The productivity of the CHO cell-free systems is further increased by using a non-canonical translation initiation due to the attachment of an internal ribosomal entry site of the Cricket paralysis virus (CRPV IRES) to the 5´ UTR of the desired gene. In this way, a direct interaction of the IRES structure with the ribosome facilitates a translation factor independent initiation of translation. Cell-free reactions were performed in fast and efficient batch reactions leading to protein yields up to 40 μg/mL. The reaction format was further adjusted to a continuous exchange CHO cell-free reaction (CHO CECF) to prolong reaction time and thereby increase the productivity of the cell-free systems. Finally, protein yields up to 1 g/L were obtained. The CHO CECF system represents a sophisticated resource to address structural and functional aspects of difficult-to-express proteins in fundamental and applied research.