Document Type


Date of Original Version



Cell & Molecular Biology


Site‐directed mutagenesis is a traditional approach for structure–function analysis of protein tyrosine kinases, and it requires the generation, expression, purification, and analysis of each mutant enzyme. In this study, we report a versatile high throughput bacterial screening system that can identify functional kinase mutants by immunological detection of tyrosine phosphorylation. Two key features of this screening system are noteworthy. First, instead of blotting bacterial colonies directly from Agar plates to nitrocellulose membrane, the colonies were cultured in 96‐well plates, and then spotted in duplicate onto the membrane with appropriate controls. This made the screening much more reliable compared with direct colony blotting transfer. A second feature is the parallel use of a protein tyrosine phosphatase (PTP)‐expressing host and a non‐PTP‐expressing host. Because high activity Src mutants are toxic to the host, the PTP system allowed the identification of Src mutants with high activity, while the non‐PTP system identified Src mutants with low activity. This approach was applied to Src mutant libraries randomized in the highly conserved HRD motif in the catalytic loop, and revealed that structurally diverse residues can replace the His and Arg residues, while the Asp residue is irreplaceable for catalytic activity.