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Appl Environ Microbiol. 2000 Sep;66(9):3807-13.

Relative contributions of bacteria, protozoa, and fungi to in vitro degradation of orchard grass cell walls and their interactions.

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  • 1National Livestock Research Institute, Rural Development Administration, Suweon 441-350, Korea.

Abstract

To assess the relative contributions of microbial groups (bacteria, protozoa, and fungi) in rumen fluids to the overall process of plant cell wall digestion in the rumen, representatives of these groups were selected by physical and chemical treatments of whole rumen fluid and used to construct an artificial rumen ecosystem. Physical treatments involved homogenization, centrifugation, filtration, and heat sterilization. Chemical treatments involved the addition of antibiotics and various chemicals to rumen fluid. To evaluate the potential activity and relative contribution to degradation of cell walls by specific microbial groups, the following fractions were prepared: a positive system (whole ruminal fluid), a bacterial (B) system, a protozoal (P) system, a fungal (F) system, and a negative system (cell-free rumen fluid). To assess the interactions between specific microbial fractions, mixed cultures (B+P, B+F, and P+F systems) were also assigned. Patterns of degradation due to the various treatments resulted in three distinct groups of data based on the degradation rate of cell wall material and on cell wall-degrading enzyme activities. The order of degradation was as follows: positive and F systems > B system > negative and P systems. Therefore, fungal activity was responsible for most of the cell wall degradation. Cell wall degradation by the anaerobic bacterial fraction was significantly less than by the fungal fraction, and the protozoal fraction failed to grow under the conditions used. In general, in the mixed culture systems the coculture systems demonstrated a decrease in cellulolysis compared with that of the monoculture systems. When one microbial fraction was associated with another microbial fraction, two types of results were obtained. The protozoal fraction inhibited cellulolysis of cell wall material by both the bacterial and the fungal fractions, while in the coculture between the bacterial fraction and the fungal fraction a synergistic interaction was detected.

PMID:
10966394
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
PMCID:
PMC92224
Free PMC Article
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