Commercial cellulase preparations for lignocellulose bioconversion are mainly produced by the fungus Trichoderma reesei. The maximum cellulose conversion of T. reesei cellulase mixture was 15%-20% higher than that of Penicillium oxalicum in the hydrolysis of corncob residue and Avicel. Nevertheless, both preparations hydrolyzed more than 92% of cellulose in NaOH-mercerized Avicel. When added to Avicel hydrolysis residue that was less reactive to P. oxalicum cellulases, cellobiohydrolase I (CBH I) from T. reesei resulted in a higher cellulose conversion than its homologous proteins from P. oxalicum and Aspergillus niger at the same protein loadings. Further domain exchange experiment attributed the high hydrolytic efficiency of T. reesei CBH I to its inter-domain linker and cellulose-binding domain. The results in part explained the superior performance of T. reesei cellulases on the degradation of native crystalline cellulose, and highlighted the important role of cellulose-binding region in determining the degree of hydrolysis by cellulases.
Keywords: Cellobiohydrolase; Cellulase; Crystalline cellulose; Domain exchange; Trichoderma reesei.
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