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Curr Opin Biotechnol. 1998 Jun;9(3):270-7.

The molecular biology of chitin digestion.

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Otto-Warburg-Center for Agricultural Biotechnology, Hebrew University of Jerusalem, Faculty of Agriculture, Rehovot, Israel.


Chitinases catalyze the hydrolysis of chitin, an unbranched polymer of beta-1,4-N-acetylglucosamine. In recent years, soil-borne microorganisms that produce chitinases are considered as potential biocontrol agents against fungi and nematodes which causes diseases of agricultural crops. Chitinases also play an important physiological and ecological role in ecosystems as recyclers of chitin, by generating carbon and nitrogen sources. Many chitinases of varied organisms have been isolated and their corresponding genes cloned.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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