The Journal of General and Applied Microbiology
Online ISSN : 1349-8037
Print ISSN : 0022-1260
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Volume 61 , Issue 4
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  • Xiao Xiao, Meiru Si, Zhifang Yang, Yaoling Zhang, Jingyuan Guan, Muham ...
    Volume 61 (2015) Issue 4 Pages 99-107
    Released: September 17, 2015
    JOURNALS FREE ACCESS
    This study focuses on the genetic and biochemical characterization of phenol hydroxylase (Phe, NCgl2588) from Corynebacterium glutamicum that shares 31% identity in amino acids with phenol hydroxylase from yeast Trichosporon cutaneum but less similarity with that from bacteria. The phe deletion mutant significantly reduced its ability to grow with phenol as the sole carbon and energy source. Expression of the phe gene was strongly induced with phenol and also subject to the control of carbon catabolite repression (CCR). The molecular weight of purified Phe protein determined by gel filtration chromatography was 70 kDa, indicating that Phe exists as a monomer in the purification condition. However, Phe protein pre-incubated with phenol showed a molecular weight of 140 kDa, suggesting that Phe is likely active as a dimer. In addition to phenol, the Phe protein could utilize various other phenolic compounds as substrates. Site-directed mutagenesis revealed that D75, P261, R262, R269, C349 and C476 are key amino acid residues closely related to the enzyme activity of Phe.
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  • Xin-hui Wang, Xing-Jun Guo, Hong-Ye Li, Ping Gou
    Volume 61 (2015) Issue 4 Pages 108-116
    Released: September 17, 2015
    JOURNALS FREE ACCESS
    Inositol phosphorylceramide (IPC) synthase is the key enzyme with highly conserved sequences, which is involved in fungal sphingolipid biosynthesis. The antibiotic aureobasidin A (AbA) induces the death of fungi through inhibiting IPC synthase activity. The mutations of AUR1 gene coding IPC synthase in fungi and protozoa causes a resistance to AbA. However, the mechanism of AbA resistance is still elusive. In this paper, we generated two mutants of Botrytis cinerea with AbA-resistance, BcAUR1a and BcAUR1b, through UV irradiation. BcAUR1a lost an intron and BcAUR1b had three amino acid mutations (L197P, F288S and T323A) in the AUR1 gene. AbA strongly inhibits the activity of IPC synthase in wild-type B. cinerea, which leads to distinct changes in cell morphology, including the delay in conidial germination, excessive branching near the tip of the germ tube and mycelium, and the inhibition of the mycelium growth. Further, AbA prevents the infection of wild-type B. cinerea in tomato fruits via reducing oxalic acid secretion and the activity of cellulase and pectinase. On the contrary, AbA has no effect on the growth and pathogenicity of the two mutants. Although both mutants show a similar AbA resistance, the molecular mechanisms might be different between the two mutants.
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  • Bong-Hyun Kim, Ji Yeon Lee, Peter C. W. Lee
    Volume 61 (2015) Issue 4 Pages 117-123
    Released: September 17, 2015
    JOURNALS FREE ACCESS
    A fungal strain producing high levels of phytase was purified to homogeneity from Penicillium oxalicum KCTC6440 (PhyA). The molecular mass of the purified PhyA was 65 kDa and optimal activity occurred at 55°C. The enzyme was stable in a pH range of 4.5–6.5, with an optimum performance at pH 5.5. The Km value for the substrate sodium phytate was 0.48 mM with a Vmax of 672 U/mg. The enzyme was inhibited by Ca2+, Cu2+, and Zn2+, and slightly enhanced by EDTA. The PhyA efficiently released phosphate from feedstuffs such as soybean, rich bran and corn meal. The PhyA gene was cloned in two steps of degenerate PCR and inverse PCR and found to comprise 1501 bp and encode 461 amino acid residues. The enzyme was found to have only 13 amino acids differing to the known PhyA from other Penicillium sp., but has distinct enzyme characteristics. Computational analysis showed that PhyA possessed more positively charged residues in the active sites compared to other PhyA molecules, which may explain the broader pH spectrum.
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  • Huanhuan Shao, Qinghua Cao, Hongyan Zhao, Xuemei Tan, Hong Feng
    Volume 61 (2015) Issue 4 Pages 124-131
    Released: September 17, 2015
    JOURNALS FREE ACCESS
    A native plasmid (pSU01) was detected by genome sequencing of Bacillus subtilis strain S1-4. Two pSU01-based shuttle expression vectors pSU02-AP and pSU03-AP were constructed enabling stable replication in B. subtilis WB600. These vectors contained the reporter gene aprE, encoding an alkaline protease from Bacillus pumilus BA06. The expression vector pSU03-AP only possessed the minimal replication elements (rep, SSO, DSO) and exhibited more stability on structure, suggesting that the rest of the genes in pSU01 (ORF1, ORF2, mob, hsp) were unessential for the structural stability of plasmid in B. subtilis. In addition, recombinant production of the alkaline protease was achieved more efficiently with pSU03-AP whose copy number was estimated to be more than 100 per chromosome. Furthermore, pSU03-AP could also be used to transform and replicate in B. pumilus BA06 under selective pressure. In conclusion, pSU03-AP is expected to be a useful tool for gene expression in Bacillus subtilis and B. pumilus.
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  • Yuya Sato, Tomoyuki Hori, Navarro R. Ronald, Hiroshi Habe, Atsushi Oga ...
    Volume 61 (2015) Issue 4 Pages 132-138
    Released: September 17, 2015
    JOURNALS FREE ACCESS
    Microbiota activators (MAs) have been used to improve the reactor performances of biological wastewater treatment processes. In this study, to remove ammonium (NH4+) accumulated during the pre-operation of a pilot-scale membrane bioreactor (MBR) under high-organic-loading conditions, an MA was added to the MBR system and the resulting changes in reactor performances and microbial communities were monitored for 12 days. The NH4+ concentrations in the sludge and effluent decreased (from 427 to 246 mg/L in the sludge (days 1–9)), and mixed liquor suspended solid increased (from 6,793 to 11,283 mg/L (days 1–12)) after the addition of MA. High-throughput Illumina sequencing of 16S rRNA genes revealed that the microbial community structure changed along with the NH4+ removal resulting from the MA addition. In particular, the relative abundance of an Acidovorax-related operational taxonomic unit (OTU) increased significantly, accounting for approximately 50% of the total microbial population at day 11. In contrast, the ammonia-oxidizing bacteria and archaea showed low abundances (<0.05%), and no anaerobic ammonia oxidizers were detected. These results suggested that the Acidovorax-related OTU was mainly involved in the NH4+ removal in the MBR, probably due to its ammonia-assimilating metabolism.
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  • Vaishnavi Babu, C. Subathra Devi
    Volume 61 (2015) Issue 4 Pages 139-146
    Released: September 17, 2015
    JOURNALS FREE ACCESS
    The aim of this study was to isolate and characterize streptokinase-producing β-hemolytic Streptococcus sp. from bovine milk. A total of 50 milk samples were collected randomly from different breeds of cow and goat (Vellore, Tamil Nadu, India). The samples were characterized and screened for streptokinase-producing isolates using microbial and biochemical analysis. About 97 colonies were isolated from milk samples showing hemolytic patterns of α (19.6%), β (24.7%) and γ (55.6 %). Out of 20β-hemolytic isolates, only 6 colonies (VB2, VB3, VB8, VB14, VB16, and VB17) were identified as β-hemolytic Streptococci as potent producers of streptokinase. VB2 and VB14 showed the greatest streptokinase activities of 265 U mL–1 and 225 U mL–1, respectively. Based on biochemical and molecular characterization, the potent isolates VB2 and VB14 were identified and confirmed as S. equinus and S. agalactiae, respectively. The identified strains were named Streptococcus equinus VIT_VB2 (GenBank accession no. JX406835) and Streptococcus agalactiae VITVS5 (GenBank accession No. KF186620) The strains isolated from bovine milk provide a variance in the fibrinolytic activity on blood clots. The current study has demonstrated that the isolation of streptokinase producers from bovine milk, and the production of streptokinase from novel strain, enhanced the fibrinolytic activity. This study is the first to report that Streptococcus equinus produces streptokinase.
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