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Appl Environ Microbiol. 1993 Sep;59(9):3032-43.

DNA sequences and expression in Streptomyces lividans of an exoglucanase gene and an endoglucanase gene from Thermomonospora fusca.

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Section of Biochemistry, Molecular and Cell Biology, Cornell University, Ithaca, New York 14853.


Two genes encoding cellulases E1 and E4 from Thermomonospora fusca have been cloned in Escherichia coli, and their DNA sequences have been determined. Both genes were introduced into Streptomyces lividans, and the enzymes were purified from the culture supernatants of transformants. E1 and E4 were expressed 18- and 4-fold higher, respectively, in S. lividans than in E. coli. Thin-layer chromatography of digestion products showed that E1 digests cellotriose, cellotetraose, and cellopentaose to cellobiose and a trace of glucose. E4 is poor at degrading cellotriose and cleaves cellopentaose to cellotetraose and glucose or cellotriose and cellobiose. It readily cleaves cellotetraose to cellobiose. E1 shows 59% identity to Cellulomonas fumi CenC in a 689-amino-acid overlap, and E4 shows 80% identity to the N terminus of C. fimi CenB in a 441-amino-acid overlap; all of these proteins are members of cellulase family E. Alignment of the amino acid sequences of Clostridium thermocellum celD, E1, E4, and four other members of family E demonstrates a clear relationship between their catalytic domains, although there is as little as 25% identity between some of them. Residues in celD that have been identified by site-directed mutagenesis and chemical modification to be important for catalytic activity are conserved in all seven proteins. The catalytic domains of E1 and E4 are not similar to those of T. fusca E2 or E5, but all four enzymes share similar cellulose-binding domains and have the same 14-bp inverted repeat upstream of their initiation codons. This sequence has been identified previously as the binding site for a protein that regulates induction.

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