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Gene. 1992 Sep 21;119(1):17-28.

Sequence analysis of a gene cluster encoding cellulases from Clostridium cellulolyticum.

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Laboratoire de Chimie Bactérienne, CNRS, Marseille, France.


The sequence of a 5633-bp EcoRI-PvuII DNA fragment from Clostridium cellulolyticum was determined. This fragment contains two complete endo-beta-1,4-glucanase-encoding genes, designated celCCC and celCCG. These two genes are flanked by two other partial open reading frames (ORF1 and celCCE) that probably encode two cellulases or related enzymes. The celCCC and celCCG genes appear to be present in a polycistronic transcriptional unit. Northern blot hybridisations with intragenic probes derived from celCCC and celCCG gave similar patterns. Two transcripts of about 5 and 6 kb were identified. The celCCC and celCCG ORFs extend over 1380 bp and 2175 bp, respectively. They are separated by only 87 nt. A typical signal sequence is present at the N terminus of the deduced polypeptides. The mature CelCCC and CelCCG proteins have M(r)s 47,201 and 76,101, respectively. Comparisons between their amino acid (aa) sequences and other known cellulase sequences revealed that: first, they both contain the repeated 24-aa sequence characteristic of clostridial beta-glycanases, secondly, the N-terminal catalytic domains of CelCCC and CelCCG can be classified into the D and E2 families, respectively, and thirdly, the largest CelCCG contains an additional internal domain which is very similar to that of the Bacillus-type cellulose-binding domain (CBD). The ORF1-C-terminal-encoded sequence also contains the clostridial 24-aa repeat. The CelCCE N-terminus consists of a typical signal sequence followed by a 168-aa domain homologous to the N-terminal repeated domain of Cellulomonas fimi CenC. This domain is connected to an incomplete catalytic domain of family E1 by a Pro-rich junction linker.

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