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Title: Enhanced delignification of steam-pretreated poplar by a bacterial laccase

The recalcitrance of woody biomass, particularly its lignin component, hinders its sustainable transformation to fuels and biomaterials. Although the recent discovery of several bacterial ligninases promises the development of novel biocatalysts, these enzymes have largely been characterized using model substrates: direct evidence for their action on biomass is lacking. Herein, we report the delignification of woody biomass by a small laccase (sLac) from Amycolatopsis sp. 75iv3. Incubation of steam-pretreated poplar (SPP) with sLac enhanced the release of acid-precipitable polymeric lignin (APPL) by ~6-fold, and reduced the amount of acid-soluble lignin by ~15%. NMR spectrometry revealed that the APPL was significantly syringyl-enriched relative to the original material (~16:1 vs. ~3:1), and that sLac preferentially oxidized syringyl units and altered interunit linkage distributions. sLac’s substrate preference among monoaryls was also consistent with this observation. In addition, sLac treatment reduced the molar mass of the APPL by over 50%, as determined by gel-permeation chromatography coupled with multi-angle light scattering. Finally, sLac acted synergistically with a commercial cellulase cocktail to increase glucose production from SPP ~8%. Altogether, this study establishes the lignolytic activity of sLac on woody biomass and highlights the biocatalytic potential of bacterial enzymes.
 [1] ;  [1] ;  [2] ;  [1] ;  [2] ;  [1] ;  [1]
  1. The Univ. of British Columbia, Vancouver, BC (Canada)
  2. Wisconsin Energy Institute, Madison, WI (United States); Univ. of Wisconsin, Madison, WI (United States)
Publication Date:
Grant/Contract Number:
Accepted Manuscript
Journal Name:
Scientific Reports
Additional Journal Information:
Journal Volume: 7; Journal ID: ISSN 2045-2322
Nature Publishing Group
Research Org:
Univ. of Wisconsin, Madison, WI (United States)
Sponsoring Org:
USDOE Office of Science (SC), Biological and Environmental Research (BER) (SC-23)
Country of Publication:
United States
59 BASIC BIOLOGICAL SCIENCES; chemical biology; environmental biotechnology
OSTI Identifier: