Platycosides, Platycodi radix (Platycodon grandiflorus root) saponins, are used as food supplements and exert diverse pharmacological activities. Deglycosylation of saponins enhances their biological efficacy, and deglycosylated platycosides are produced mainly through enzymatic hydrolysis. However, the types of available deglycosylated platycosides remain limited because of a lack of hydrolyzing enzymes that can act on specific glycosides in glycosylated platycosides. In this study, a crude enzyme from Aspergillus tubingensis converted platycoside E (PE) and polygalacin D3 (PGD3) into deglucose-apiose-xylosylated (deGAX)-platycodin D (PD) and deGAX-polygalacin D (PGD), respectively. The products were identified through LC/MS analysis by specifically hydrolyzing all glucose residues at C-3, and apiose and xylose residues at C-28 of platycoside. The hydrolytic activity of the crude enzyme obtained after the cultivation of the fungus using citrus pectin and corn steep solid as carbon and nitrogen sources, respectively, in culture medium was increased compared with those using other carbon and nitrogen sources. The crude enzyme from A. tubingensis was the most effective in producing deGAX platycoside at pH 5.0 and 60°C. The crude enzyme produced 0.32 mg/ml deGAX-PD and 0.34 mg/ml deGAX-PGD from 1 mg/ml PE and 1 mg/ml PGD3 (at pH 5.0 and 60°C) for 12 and 10 h, with productivities of 32.0 and 42.5 mg/l/h and molar yields of 62.1 and 59.6%, respectively. To the best of our knowledge, this is the first study to produce deGAX platycosides from glycosylated platycosides.
Keywords: Aspergillus tubingensis; Platycoside; biotransformation; crude enzyme; deglucose-apiose-xylosylated platycoside.