A thermostable chitosanase gene from the environmental isolate Bacillus sp. strain CK4, which was identified on the basis of phylogenetic analysis of the 16S rRNA gene sequence and phenotypic analysis, was cloned, and its complete DNA sequence was determined. The thermostable chitosanase gene was composed of an 822-bp open reading frame which encodes a protein of 242 amino acids and a signal peptide corresponding to a 30-kDa enzyme. The deduced amino acid sequence of the chitosanase from Bacillus sp. strain CK4 exhibits 76.6, 15.3, and 14.2% similarities to those from Bacillus subtilis, Bacillus ehemensis, and Bacillus circulans, respectively. C-terminal homology analysis shows that Bacillus sp. strain CK4 belongs to cluster III with B. subtilis. The gene was similar in size to that of the mesophile B. subtilis but showed a higher preference for codons ending in G or C. The enzyme contains 2 additional cysteine residues at positions 49 and 211. The recombinant chitosanase has been purified to homogeneity by using only two steps with column chromatography. The half-life of the enzyme was 90 min at 80°C, which indicates its usefulness for industrial applications. The enzyme had a useful reactivity and a high specific activity for producing functional oligosaccharides as well, with trimers through hexamers as the major products.