We examined the in vitro digestibility of maltobionic acid, obtained from enzymatic oxidation of maltose, its utilization by intestinal bacteria, and its biological effects on the bowel movements in healthy subjects. We found that maltobionic acid is not digested in vitro by saliva, gastric juice, or pancreatic juice. Moreover, it is digested only to a small extent by small intestinal enzymes. Among the 24 strains of intestinal bacteria, maltobionic acid was selectively utilized by Bifidobacterium dentium and Bi. adolescentis. We also evaluated the influence of long-term ingestion of maltobionic acid calcium salt on bowel movements in healthy Japanese women by a randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled, crossover trial. Thirty-four subjects completed the study, and no adverse events related to the test food were observed. Ten subjects were excluded prior to the efficacy analysis because of conflict with the control criteria; the remaining 24 subjects were analyzed. Intake of test food containing 4 g maltobionic acid for 4 weeks caused a significant increase in the stool frequency, significant improvement in stool form scale and CAS-MT total scores as compared with the placebo group. These results suggest that maltobionic acid is an indigestible carbohydrate and is a promising therapeutic agent for improving the intestinal environment.
Glucose and fructose were treated in subcritical water in the presence of alkali or alkaline earth metal chlorides. All salts accelerated the conversion of saccharides, and alkaline earth metal chloride greatly promoted the isomerization of glucose to fructose. In contrast, alkali metal salts only slightly promoted this isomerization and facilitated the decomposition of glucose to byproducts such as organic acids. The selectivity of the glucose-to-fructose isomerization was higher at lower conversions of glucose and in the presence of alkaline earth metal chlorides. The pH of the reaction mixture also greatly affected the selectivity, which decreased rapidly at lower pH due to the generated organic acids. At low pH, decomposition of glucose became dominant over isomerization, but further conversion of glucose was suppressed. This result was elucidated by the suppression of the alkali-induced isomerization of glucose at low pH. Fructose underwent decomposition during the treatment of the fructose solution, but its isomerization to glucose was not observed. The added salts autocatalytically promoted the decomposition of fructose, and the reaction mechanism of fructose decomposition differed from that of glucose.
Sugarcane bagasse is a useful biomass resource. In the present study, we examined the efficacy of ammonia pretreatment for selective release of hemicellulose from bagasse. Pretreatment of bagasse with aqueous ammonia resulted in significant loss of xylan. In contrast, pretreatment of bagasse with anhydrous ammonia resulted in almost no xylan loss. Aqueous ammonia or anhydrous ammonia-pretreated bagasse was then subjected to enzymatic digestion with a xylanase from the glycoside hydrolase (GH) family 10 or a xylanase from the GH family 11. The hydrolysis rate of xylan in bagasse pretreated with aqueous ammonia was approximately 50 %. In contrast, in the anhydrous ammonia-treated bagasse, xylan hydrolysis was > 80 %. These results suggested that anhydrous ammonia pretreatment would be an effective method for preparation of sugarcane bagasse for enzymatic hydrolysis to recover xylooligosaccharides.
Bifidobacterium longum subsp. infantis ATCC 15697 possesses five α-L-fucosidases, which have been previously characterized toward fucosylated human milk oligosaccharides containing α1,2/3/4-linked fucose [Sela et al.: Appl. Environ. Microbiol., 78, 795-803 (2012)]. In this study, two glycoside hydrolase family 29 α-L-fucosidases out of five (Blon_0426 and Blon_0248) were found to be 1,6-α-L-fucosidases acting on core α1,6-fucose on the N-glycan of glycoproteins. These enzymes readily hydrolyzed p-nitrophenyl-α-L-fucoside and Fucα1-6GlcNAc, but hardly hydrolyzed Fucα1-6(GlcNAcβ1-4)GlcNAc, suggesting that they de-fucosylate Fucα1-6GlcNAcβ1-Asn-peptides/proteins generated by the action of endo-β-N-acetylglucosaminidase. We demonstrated that Blon_0426 can de-fucosylate Fucα1-6GlcNAc-IgG prepared from Rituximab using Endo-CoM from Cordyceps militaris. To generate homogenous non-fucosylated N-glycan-containing IgG with high antibody-dependent cellular cytotoxicity (ADCC) activity, the resulting GlcNAc-IgG has a potential to be a good acceptor substrate for the glycosynthase mutant of Endo-M from Mucor hiemalis. Collectively, our results strongly suggest that Blon_0426 and Blon_0248 are useful for glycoprotein glycan remodeling.