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Hoffmann, R. A wiki for the life sciences where authorship matters. Nature Genetics (2008)

Functional characterization of a novel xylanase from a corn strain of Erwinia chrysanthemi.

A beta-1,4-xylan hydrolase (xylanase A) produced by Erwinia chrysanthemi D1 isolated from corn was analyzed with respect to its secondary structure and enzymatic function. The pH and temperature optima for the enzyme were found to be pH 6.0 and 35 degrees C, with a secondary structure under those conditions that consists of approximately 10 to 15% alpha-helices. The enzyme was still active at temperatures higher than 40 degrees C and at pHs of up to 9. 0. The loss of enzymatic activity at temperatures above 45 degrees C was accompanied by significant loss of secondary structure. The enzyme was most active on xylan substrates with low ratios of xylose to 4-O-methyl-D-glucuronic acid and appears to require two 4-O-methyl-D-glucuronic acid residues for substrate recognition and/or cleavage of a beta-1,4-xylosidic bond. The enzyme hydrolyzed sweetgum xylan, generating products with a 4-O-methyl-glucuronic acid-substituted xylose residue one position from the nonreducing terminus of the oligoxyloside product. No internal cleavages of the xylan backbone between substituted xylose residues were observed, giving the enzyme a unique mode of action in the hydrolysis compared to all other xylanases that have been described. Given the size of the oligoxyloside products generated by the enzyme during depolymerization of xylan substrates, the function of the enzyme may be to render substrate available for other depolymerizing enzymes instead of producing oligoxylosides for cellular metabolism and may serve to produce elicitors during the initiation of the infectious process.[1]


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