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Sci Rep. 2017 Nov 1;7(1):14850. doi: 10.1038/s41598-017-14073-w.

Identification and characterization of a novel β-glucosidase via metagenomic analysis of Bursaphelenchus xylophilus and its microbial flora.

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Department of Life Science and Biotechnology, Nanyang Normal University, Nanyang, 473000, P.R. China.
State Key Laboratory of Cotton Biology, Henan Key Laboratory of Plant Stress Biology, School of Life Sciences, Henan University, Kaifeng, 475004, China.
Department of Life Science and Biotechnology, Nanyang Normal University, Nanyang, 473000, P.R. China.


β-glucosidases catalyze the final step of cellulose hydrolysis and are essential in cellulose degradation. A β-glucosidase gene, cen502, was identified and isolated from a metagenomic library from Bursaphelenchus xylophilus via functional screening. Analyses indicated that cen502 encodes a 465 amino acid polypeptide that contains a catalytic domain belonging to the glycoside hydrolase family 1 (GH1). Cen502 was heterologously expressed, purified, and biochemically characterized. Recombinant Cen502 displayed optimum enzymatic activity at pH 8.0 and 38 °C. The enzyme had highest specific activity to p-nitrophenyl-β-D-glucopyranoside (pNPG; 180.3 U/mg) and had K m and V max values of 2.334 mol/ml and 9.017 μmol/min/mg, respectively. The addition of Fe2+ and Mn2+ significantly increased Cen502 β-glucosidase activity by 60% and 50%, respectively, while 10% and 25% loss of β-glucosidase activity was induced by addition of Pb2+ and K+, respectively. Cen502 exhibited activity against a broad array of substrates, including cellobiose, lactose, salicin, lichenan, laminarin, and sophorose. However, Cen502 displayed a preference for the hydrolysis of β-1,4 glycosidic bonds rather than β-1,3, β-1,6, or β-1,2 bonds. Our results indicate that Cen502 is a novel β-glucosidase derived from bacteria associated with B. xylophilus and may represent a promising target to enhance the efficiency of cellulose bio-degradation in industrial applications.

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