The natural catalytic function of CuGE glucuronoyl esterase in hydrolysis of genuine lignin-carbohydrate complexes from birch

Caroline Mosbech, Jesper Holck, Anne S. Meyer, Jane Wittrup Agger*

*Corresponding author for this work

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Abstract

Glucuronoyl esterases belong to carbohydrate esterase family 15 and catalyze de-esterification. Their natural function is presumed to be cleavage of ester linkages in lignin-carbohydrate complexes particularly those linking lignin and glucuronoyl residues in xylans in hardwood. Here, we show for the first time a detailed product profile of aldouronic acids released from birchwood lignin by a glucuronoyl esterase from the white-rot fungus Cerrena unicolor (CuGE). CuGE releases substrate for GH10 endo-xylanase which results in significantly increased product release compared to the action of endo-xylanase alone. CuGE also releases neutral xylo-oligosaccharides that can be ascribed to the enzymes feruloyl esterase side activity as demonstrated by release of ferulic acid from insoluble wheat arabinoxylan. The data verify the enzyme's unique ability to catalyze removal of all glucuronoxylan associated with lignin and we propose that this is a direct result of enzymatic cleavage of the ester bonds connecting glucuronoxylan to lignin via 4-O-methyl glucuronoyl-ester linkages. This function appears important for the fungal organism's ability to effectively utilize all available carbohydrates in lignocellulosic substrates. In bioprocess perspectives, this enzyme is a clear candidate for polishing lignin for residual carbohydrates to achieve pure, native lignin fractions after minimal pretreatment.
Original languageEnglish
Article number71
JournalBiotechnology for Biofuels
Volume11
Number of pages9
ISSN1754-6834
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2018

Bibliographical note

© The Author(s) 2018. This article is distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License (http://creat iveco mmons .org/licen ses/by/4.0/), which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided you give appropriate credit to the original author(s) and the source, provide a link to the Creative Commons license, and indicate if changes were made. The Creative Commons Public Domain Dedication waiver (http://creat iveco mmons .org/ publi cdoma in/zero/1.0/) applies to the data made available in this article, unless otherwise stated.

Keywords

  • Aldouronic acids
  • CE15
  • Glucuronoxylan
  • Glucuronoyl esterases
  • LCC
  • Lignin

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