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Appl Environ Microbiol. 1985 Mar;49(3):572-6.

Fermentation of cellodextrins by cellulolytic and noncellulolytic rumen bacteria.


Water-soluble cellodextrins were prepared from microcrystalline cellulose by using fuming hydrochloric acid and acetone precipitation. This cellodextrin preparation contained only trace amounts of glucose and cellobiose and was primarily composed of cellotetraose and cellopentaose. When various species of cellulolytic and noncellulolytic bacteria were cultured with cellodextrins, their growth rates and maximal optical densities were in most cases similar to those observed with cellobiose. Time course samplings and analyses of cellodextrins by high-pressure liquid chromatography indicated that longer-chain cellodextrins were hydrolyzed extracellularly to cellobiose and cellotriose. Cellodextrin utilization by noncellulolytic rumen bacteria and extracellular hydrolysis of cellodextrins increase the possibility that cross-feeding occurs in the rumen and help to explain the high numbers of noncellulolytic bacteria in ruminants fed fibrous diets.

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