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Biochem J. Feb 1, 1978; 169(2): 389–395.
PMCID: PMC1184178

Substrate specificity and mode of action of a cellulase from Aspergillus niger.

Abstract

The mode of action and substrate specificity of a cellulase purified from Aspergillus niger were examined. The enzyme showed little capacity to hydrolyse highly ordered cellulose, but readily attacked soluble cellulose derivatives and amorphous alkali-swollen cellulose. Activity towards barley glucan and lichenin was greater than with CM-cellulose. Low activity was detected with CM-pachyman (a substituted beta-1,3-glucose polymer) and xylan. Activity towards yeast glucan, mannan, ethlene glycol chitin, glycol chitosan, laminarin, polygalacturonic acid and pectin could not be demonstrated. Cellobiose and p-nitrophenyl beta-D-glucoside were not hydrolysed, whereas the rate of hydrolysis of the higher members of the reduced cellulodextrins increased with chain length. The central bonds of cellotetraosylsorbitol and cellopentaosylsorbitol were the preferred points of clevage. Kinetic data indicated that the specificity region of the cellulase is five glucose units in length. The evidence indicates that the cellulase is an endoglucanase.

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