Beijing Advanced Innovation Center for Food Nutrition and Human Health, College of Food Science and Nutritional Engineering, China Agricultural University, Beijing 100083, China. Electronic address: [Email]
A novel α-amylase gene (RmAmyA) from Rhizomucor miehei was cloned and expressed in Pichia pastoris. RmAmyA showed 70% amino acid identity with the α-amylase from Rhizomucor pusillus. A high α-amylase activity of 29,794.2 U/mL was found through high cell density fermentation. The molecular mass of RmAmyA was determined to be 49.9 kDa via SDS-PAGE. RmAmyA was optimally active at 75 °C and pH 6.0, and it did not require Ca2+ to improve its activity. It exhibited broad substrate specificity towards amylose, amylopectin, soluble starch, pullulan, and cyclodextrins. High level of maltose (54%, w/w) was produced after liquefied starch was hydrolysed with RmAmyA for 16 h. Moreover, the addition of RmAmyA into Chinese steamed bread resulted in 7.7% increment in the specific volume, and 17.2% and 11.5% reduction in the chewiness and hardness, respectively. These results indicate that RmAmyA might be a potential candidate for applications in the food industry.