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AUTOLYSIS IN THE ANAEROBIC FUNGUS Piromyces communis OTS1 : PRESENCE OF CHITINASE AND β-1, 3-GLUCANASE ACTIVITIES

  • Sakurada, M. (Animal Science Division, Faculty of Agriculture, Miyazaki University) ;
  • Morgavi, D.P. (Laboratory of Animal Nutrition & Biochemistry, Faculty of Agriculture, Miyazaki University) ;
  • Ohishi, T. (Animal Science Division, Faculty of Agriculture, Miyazaki University) ;
  • Onodera, R. (Animal Science Division, Faculty of Agriculture, Miyazaki University)
  • Received : 1995.05.30
  • Accepted : 1996.01.05
  • Published : 1996.06.01

Abstract

The degree of autolysis and presence of cell-wall degrading enzymes in an anaerobic ruminal fungus, Piromyces communis OTSI, grown in liquid medium, was monitored to evaluate the effect of self-digestion on fungal biomass. After a 30 days incubation period fungal dry weight decreased by 45% and the cell wall component chitin decreased by 22%. Chitinase activity detected in the supernatant was mainly of the endotype and peaked at day 6 of the incubation. ${\beta}-1$, 3-glucanase was detected from day 4 and increased throughout the incubation period. Autolysis was a slow process, and under natural conditions it is unlikely that it plays a significant role in the degradation of the spent fungal vegetative stage in the rumen.