The Effect of Saturated Fatty Acids on Cellulose Digestion by the Rumen Anaerobic Fungus, Neocallimatix frontalis C5-1

  • Ha, J.K. ;
  • Lee, S.S. ;
  • Gao, Z. ;
  • Kim, C.-H. ;
  • Kim, S.W. ;
  • Ko, Jong Y. ;
  • Cheng, K.-J.
  • Received : 2001.01.17
  • Accepted : 2001.02.22
  • Published : 2001.07.01


The effects of various concentrations of saturated fatty acids (SFA; caprylic, capric and stearic acids) on the growth of the anaerobic fungus, Neocallimastix frontalis C5-1 isolated from the rumen of a Korean native goat were investigated. At higher concentrations of fatty acids (0.1%, w/v), the addition of SFA strongly decreased filter paper (FP) cellulose digestion and polysaccharide-degrading enzyme activity. The sensitivity of the rumen anaerobic fungus to the added fatty acids increased in the following order: caprylic ($C_{8:0}$)>capric($C_{10:0}$)>stearic($C_{18:0}$) acid, although stearic acid had no significant (p<0.05) inhibitory effects at any of the concentrations tested. However, the addition of SFA at lower concentrations (0.01 and 0.001% levels), did not inhibit FP cellulose degradation and enzyme activity. Furthermore, although these parameters were slightly stimulated by the addition of SFA, they were not statistically different from control values. This is the first report examining the effects of fatty acids on anaerobic gut fungi. We found that the lower levels of fatty acids used in this experiment were able to stimulate the growth and specific enzyme activities of rumen anaerobic fungi, whereas the higher levels of fatty acids were inhibitory with respect to fungal cellulolysis.


Fatty Acids;Rumen Anaerobic Fungi;Cellulose Digestion;Cellulase Activity


Supported by : Ministry of Agriculture and Forestry of Korea, KOSEF(Korea Science and Engineering Foundation)