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Mol Biotechnol. 2003 Jul;24(3):257-81.

A new look at xylanases: an overview of purification strategies.

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Department of Biotechnology, Unit of Bioengineering and Bioprocesses, Estrada do Pago do Luminar. 22, Edifícia F Sala 1070A, 1649-038, Lisboa, Portugal.


Interest in xylanases from different sources has increased markedly in the past decade, in part because of the application of these enzymes in the pulp and paper industry. Purity and purification costs are becoming important issues in modern biotechnology as the industry matures and competitive products reach the marketplace. Thus, new paths for successful and efficient xylanase recovery have to be followed. This article reviews the isolation and purification methods used for the recovery of microbial xylanases. Origins and applications of xylanases are described, highlighting the special features of this class of enzymes, such as the carbohydrate-binding domains (CBDs) and their importance in the development of affinity methodologies to increase and facilitate xylanase purification. Implications of recombinant DNA technology for the isolation and purification of xylanases are evaluated. Several purification procedures are analyzed, taking into consideration the sequence of the methods used in each and the number of times each method is used. New directions to improve xylanase separation and purification from fermentation media are described.

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