Applied Biochemistry and Biotechnology (v.172, #2)

Fungi had become the main resource of polyunsaturated fatty acids, especially linoleic acid. The research studied the effects and mechanism of selenium on polyunsaturated fatty acids of Diasporangium jonesianum. The results showed that selenium could significantly increase the yields of linoleic acid. In contrast, the growth and γ-linolenic acid yield of D. jonesianum was decreased under selenium treatments. Δ6-Fatty acid desaturase gene of D. jonesianum was investigated in this research. Sequence analysis indicated that this cDNA sequence encoded 235 amino acids. The conserved region of Δ6-fatty acid desaturase included three conserved histidine-rich domain, hydropathy profile, and was rich in disulfide bonds. This study showed that selenium may in discriminatively substitute S and incorporate selenium-amino acids into the desaturase that the conformation of enzyme active sites was impacted which leaded to the inhibition of the convert of linoleic acid to γ-linolenic acid and the over accumulation of linoleic acid. Selenium might enhance the fatty acid contents of fungi through influencing the desaturase structure.
Keywords: Diasporangium jonesianum ; Selenium; Δ6-Fatty acid desaturase; Linoleic acid

The Antimicrobial Effects and Metabolomic Footprinting of Carboxyl-Capped Bismuth Nanoparticles Against Helicobacter pylori by P. Nazari; R. Dowlatabadi-Bazaz; M. R. Mofid; M. R. Pourmand; N. E. Daryani; M. A. Faramarzi; Z. Sepehrizadeh; A. R. Shahverdi (570-579).
Organic salts of bismuth are currently used as antimicrobial agents against Helicobacter pylori. This study evaluated the antibacterial effect of elemental bismuth nanoparticles (Bi NPs) using a serial agar dilution method for the first time against different clinical isolates and a standard strain of H. pylori. The Bi NPs were biologically prepared and purified by a recently described method and subjected to further characterization by infrared spectroscopy and anti-H. pylori evaluation. Infrared spectroscopy results showed the presence of carboxyl functional groups on the surface of biogenic Bi NPs. These biogenic nanoparticles showed good antibacterial activity against all tested H. pylori strains. The resulting MICs varied between 60 and 100 μg/ml for clinical isolates of H. pylori and H. pylori (ATCC 26695). The antibacterial effect of bismuth ions was also tested against all test strains. The antimicrobial effect of Bi ions was lower than antimicrobial effect of bismuth in the form of elemental NPs. The effect of Bi NPs on metabolomic footprinting of H. pylori was further evaluated by 1H NMR spectroscopy. Exposure of H. pylori to an inhibitory concentration of Bi NPs (100 μg/ml) led to release of some metabolites such as acetate, formic acid, glutamate, valine, glycine, and uracil from bacteria into their supernatant. These findings confirm that these nanoparticles interfere with Krebs cycle, nucleotide, and amino acid metabolism and shows anti-H. pylori activity.
Keywords: Bismuth; Helicobacter pylori ; Nanoparticle; Biosynthesis; Metabolomics

Bacillus subtilis SC-8 produces an antibiotic that has narrow antagonistic activity against bacteria in the Bacillus cereus group. In B. cereus group bacteria, peptide-activating PlcR (PapR) plays a significant role in regulating the transcription of virulence factors. When B. subtilis SC-8 and B. cereus are co-cultured, PapR is assumed to stimulate antibiotic production by B. subtilis SC-8. To better understand the effect of PapR on this interspecies interaction, the global transcriptome profile of B. subtilis SC-8 was analyzed in the presence of PapR. Significant changes were detected in 12.8 % of the total transcripts. Genes related to amino acid transport and metabolism (16.5 %) and transcription (15 %) were mainly upregulated, whereas genes involved in carbohydrate transport and metabolism (12.7 %) were markedly downregulated. The expression of genes related to transcription, including several transcriptional regulators and proteins involved in tRNA biosynthesis, was increased. The expression levels of genes associated with several transport systems, such as antibiotic, cobalt, and iron complex transporters, was also significantly altered. Among the downregulated genes were transcripts associated with spore formation, the subtilosin A gene cluster, and nitrogen metabolism.
Keywords: Bacillus subtilis ; PapR signal; Antimicrobial peptide; RNA-seq; Bacillus cereus group

Cloning and Characterization of a Biotic-Stress-Inducible Glutathione Transferase from Phaseolus vulgaris by Evangelia Chronopoulou; Panagiotis Madesis; Athanasios Tsaftaris; Nikolaos E. Labrou (595-609).
Glutathione transferases (GSTs, EC are ubiquitous proteins in plants that play important roles in stress tolerance and in the detoxification of toxic chemicals and metabolites. In this study, we systematically examined the catalytic diversification of a GST isoenzyme from Phaseolus vulgaris (PvGST) which is induced under biotic stress treatment (Uromyces appendiculatus infection). The full-length cDNA of this GST isoenzyme (termed PvGSTU3-3) with complete open reading frame, was isolated using RACE-RT and showed that the deduced amino acid sequence shares high homology with the tau class plant GSTs. PvGSTU3-3 catalyzes several different reactions and exhibits wide substrate specificity. Of particular importance is the finding that the enzyme shows high antioxidant catalytic function and acts as hydroperoxidase, thioltransferase, and dehydroascorbate reductase. In addition, its K m for GSH is about five to ten times lower compared to other plant GSTs, suggesting that PvGSTU3-3 is able to perform efficient catalysis under conditions where the concentration of reduced glutathione is low (e.g., oxidative stress). Its ability to conjugate GSH with isothiocyanates may provide an additional role for this enzyme to act as a regulator of the released isothiocyanates from glucosinolates as a response of biotic stress. Molecular modeling showed that PvGSTU3-3 shares the same overall fold and structural organization with other plant cytosolic GSTs, with major differences at their hydrophobic binding sites (H-sites) and some differences at the level of C-terminal domain and the linker between the C- and N-terminal domains. PvGSTU3-3, in general, exhibits restricted ability to bind xenobiotics in a nonsubstrate manner, suggesting that the biological role of PvGSTU3-3, is restricted mainly to the catalytic function. Our findings highlight the functional and catalytic diversity of plant GSTs and demonstrate their pivotal role for addressing biotic stresses in Phaseolus vulgaris.
Keywords: Biotic stress; Glutathione transferase; Herbicide detoxification; Homology modeling

Increasing fermentable sugar yields per gram of biomass depends strongly on optimal selection of varieties and optimization of pretreatment conditions. In this study, dilute acid pretreatment of bagasse from six varieties of sugarcane was investigated in connection with enzymatic hydrolysis for maximum combined sugar yield (CSY). The CSY from the varieties were also compared with the results from industrial bagasse. The results revealed considerable differences in CSY between the varieties. Up to 22.7 % differences in CSY at the optimal conditions was observed. The combined sugar yield difference between the best performing variety and the industrial bagasse was 34.1 %. High ratio of carbohydrates to lignin and low ash content favored the release of sugar from the substrates. At mild pretreatment conditions, the differences in bioconversion efficiency between varieties were greater than at severe condition. This observation suggests that under less severe conditions the glucose recovery was largely determined by chemical composition of biomass. The results from this study support the possibility of increasing sugar yields or improving the conversion efficiency when pretreatment optimization is performed on varieties with improved properties.
Keywords: Sugarcane bagasse; Variety; Chemical composition; Pretreatment; Enzymatic hydrolysis; Combined sugar yield; Optimization

Biodegradation of Tetracycline Under Various Conditions and Effects on Microbial Community by Zeynep Cetecioglu; Bahar Ince; Samet Azman; Orhan Ince (631-640).
Five hundred tons of antibiotics are consumed yearly in the world. In this study, the biodegradation characteristics of tetracycline (TET) under nitrate-reducing, sulfate-reducing, and methanogenic conditions were determined by batch tests. Also, effects of TET on mixed microbial cultures were revealed by microbiological analysis. In this scope, gas generation and composition, dissolved organic carbon, and electron acceptor concentrations were monitored during 120 days. Additionally, changes on quantities of specific microbial groups were determined by Q-PCR. TET showed non-biodegradable behavior under nitrate- and sulfate-reducing conditions, whereas slightly biodegradable behavior under methanogenic conditions approximately 46 % degradation. The effects of TET on the abundance of mixed culture varied according to taxonomic units. Sulfate-reducing bacteria were inhibited by TET, while archaeal, bacterial, and methanogenic populations were not affected significantly.
Keywords: Tetracycline; Anoxic; Anaerobic; Biodegradation test; Q-PCR; OECD 311

Controlled Production of Exopolysaccharides from Enterobacter A47 as a Function of Carbon Source with Demonstration of Their Film and Emulsifying Abilities by Filomena Freitas; Vitor D. Alves; Ana Rosa Gouveia; Cristiana Pinheiro; Cristiana A. V. Torres; Christian Grandfils; Maria A. M. Reis (641-657).
The bacterium Enterobacter A47 has demonstrated the ability to synthesise distinct exopolysaccharides (EPS) as a function of the substrate used. The culture's performance was evaluated in experiments using either glucose or xylose, as single carbon sources, and compared with the substrate (glycerol) used in previous studies. The highest EPS production (13.23 g L−1) was obtained in the glucose fed assay, with a volumetric productivity of 3.38 g L−1 day−1. The use of xylose resulted in lower productivity (1.39 g L−1 day−1). The synthesised polymers have the same main sugar monomers (fucose, glucose, galactose and glucuronic acid), but their relative proportion varied with the substrate used. The acyl groups' content and composition were also affected by the substrate used. The polymers produced from glycerol (EPS-s) and glucose (EPS-g) had identical shear-thinning behaviour and good emulsion-stabilising capacity and their films had similar mechanical and water vapour properties. However, the emulsions stabilised with EPS-g were less stable and destabilised within short periods of time or when subjected to heat and freezing/thawing procedures. On the other hand, the polymer produced from xylose had little emulsion-stabilising capacity and lower apparent viscosity than EPS-s and EPS-g, but its films were considerably more elastic.
Keywords: Bacterial exopolysaccharide (EPS); Enterobacter A47; Glucose; Xylose; Rheology; Polysaccharide-based films; Emulsion forming and stabilising capacity

Identification of Folding Intermediates of Streblin, The Most Stable Serine Protease: Biophysical Analysis by Reetesh Kumar; Pinki Tripathi; Fabio Rogerio de Moraes; Ícaro P. Caruso; Medicherla V. Jagannadham (658-671).
Streblin, a serine proteinase from plant Streblus asper, has been used to investigate the conformational changes induced by pH, temperature, and chaotropes. The near/far UV circular dichroism activities under fluorescence emission spectroscopy and 8-aniline-1-naphthalene sulfonate (ANS) binding have been carried out to understand the unfolding of the protein in the presence of denaturants. Spectroscopic studies reveal that streblin belongs to the α+β class of proteins and exhibits stability towards chemical denaturants, guanidine hydrochloride (GuHCl). The pH-induced transition of this protein is noncooperative for transition phases between pH 0.5 and 2.5 (midpoint, 1.5) and pH 2.5 and 10.0 (midpoint, 6.5). At pH 1.0 or lower, the protein unfolds to form acid-unfolded state, and for pH 7.5 and above, protein turns into an alkaline denatured state characterized by the absence of ANS binding. At pH 2.0 (1 M GuHCl), streblin exists in a partially unfolded state with characteristics of a molten globule state. The protein is found to exhibit strong and predominant ANS binding. In total, six different intermediate states has been identified to show protein folding pathways.
Keywords: Sequential unfolding; Streblin; Streblus asper ; Biophysics; Molten globule

A lectin has successfully been isolated from Phaseolus vulgaris cv. Chinese pinto bean using affinity chromatography, ion exchange chromatography, and gel filtration in succession, with a 15.4-fold purification. Investigation of its characteristics revealed that Chinese pinto bean lectin (CPBL) was a 58-kDa dimeric glucosamine-binding protein. Its Mg2+-dependent hemagglutinating activity was stable at pH 7–8 and at or below 60 °C. When the purified lectin was tested against six fungal species including Phyllosticta citriasiana, Magnaporthe grisea, Bipolans maydis, Valsa mali, Mycosphaerella arachidicola, and Setosphaeria turcica, only the mycelial growth of V. mali was reduced by 30.6 % by the lectin at 30 μM. The lectin did not exert any discernible antiproliferative effects on breast cancer MCF-7 cells, but was able to suppress proliferation of nasopharyngeal carcinoma HONE-1 cells, with an IC50 of 17.3 μM, as revealed by the MTT assay. Since few plant lectins demonstrate antifungal activity against V. mali, and not many others have inhibitory effects on HONE-1 cells, CPBL is a distinctive lectin which may be exploited for development into an agent against V. mali and HONE-1 cells.
Keywords: Phaseolus vulgaris ; Antifungal; Antitumor; Lectin; Nasopharyngeal carcinomas

The present study deals with the characterization of halotolerant protease produced by Bacillus aquimaris VITP4 strain isolated from Kumta coast, Karnataka, India. The studies were performed at 40 °C and pH 8 in Tris buffer. Metal ions such as Mn2+ and Ca2+ increased the proteolytic activity of the enzyme by 34 and 30 %, respectively, at 10 mM concentration. Cu2+ at 1 mM concentration was found to enhance the enzyme activity by 16 %, whereas inhibition was observed at higher concentration (>5 mM). Slight inhibition was observed even with lower (>1 mM) concentrations of Zn2+, Hg2+, Fe3+, Ni2+, and Co2+.The activity of protease was completely inhibited by phenylmethylsulfonyl fluoride, indicating that the VITP4 protease is a serine protease. The presence of ethylenediaminetetraacetic acid and 1,10-phenanthroline (>5 mM) moderately inhibited the activity, suggesting that the enzyme is activated by metal ions. The protease was purified to homogeneity with a purification fold of 15.7 with ammonium sulfate precipitation and 46.65 with gel filtration chromatography using Sephadex G-100, resulting in a specific activity of 424 ± 2.6 U mg−1. The VITP4 protease consists of a single polypeptide chain with a molecular mass of 34.7 kDa as determined by sodium dodecyl sulfate–polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis and matrix-assisted laser desorption/ionization–time of flight. Among the different substrates used (casein, egg albumin, gelatin, and bovine serum albumin), the activity was higher with casein with V max, K m, and k cat values of 0.817 mg ml min−1, 0.472 mg ml−1, and 2.31 s−1, respectively. Circular dichroism studies revealed that the VITP4 protease has a predominantly β-sheet structure (51.6 %) with a temperature for half denaturation of 85.8 °C in the presence of 1 mM CaCl2. Additionally, the VITP4 protease was found to retain more than 70 % activity in the presence of 10 mM concentration of different detergents (CTAB, urea, and sodium dodecyl sulfate) and surfactants (Triton X-100, Tween-20, and Tween-80), and the results of wash performance test with various commercial detergents confirmed that it can be used in detergent formulations.
Keywords: Halotolerant; Serine protease; Inhibitors; Chromatography; SDS-PAGE; MALDI-TOF; Circular dichroism; Detergents

Using emulsion copolymer of styrene (St), glycidyl methacrylate (GMA) and 2-hydroxyethyl methacrylate (HEMA) as seed latexes, the superparamagnetic polymer emulsion particles were prepared by seeded emulsion copolymerization of butyl methacrylate (BMA), vinyl acetate (VAc) and ethylene glycol dimethacrylate in the presence of the seed latexes and superparamagnetic Fe3O4/SiOx nanoparticles (or Fe3O4-APTS nanoparticles) through a two-step process, without addition of any emulsifier. The magnetic emulsion particles named P(St-GMA-HEMA)/P(BMA-VAc) were characterized by transmission electron microscope and vibrating sample magnetometry. The results showed that the magnetic emulsion particles held a structure with a thinner shell (around 100 nm) and a bigger cavity (around 200 nm), and possessed a certain level of magnetic response. The resulting magnetic emulsion particles were employed in the immobilization of lipase by two strategies to immobilized lipase onto the resulting magnetic composites directly (S-1) or using glutaraldehyde as a coupling agent (S-2), thus, experimental data showed that the thermal stability and reusability of immobilized lipase based on S-2 were higher than that of S-1.
Keywords: Polymer Emulsion Particles; Soap-Free Emulsion; Magnetic Materials; Polymerization; Lipase Immobilization; Enzymatic Activity

Population Analysis of Mesophilic Microbial Fuel Cells Fed with Carbon Monoxide by A. Hussain; G. Bruant; P. Mehta; V. Raghavan; B. Tartakovsky; S. R. Guiot (713-726).
Electricity generation in a microbial fuel cell (MFC) fed with carbon monoxide (CO) has been recently demonstrated; however, the microbial ecology of this system has not yet been described. In this work the diversity of the microbial community present at the anode of CO-fed MFCs was studied by performing denaturing gradient gel electrophoresis (DGGE) and high-throughput sequencing (HTS) analyses. HTS indicated a significant increase of the archaeal genus Methanobacterium and of the bacterial order Clostridiales, notably including Clostridium species, while in both MFCs DGGE identified members of the bacterial genera Geobacter, Desulfovibrio, and Clostridium, and of the archaeal genera Methanobacterium, Methanofollis, and Methanosaeta. In particular, the presence of Geobacter sulfurreducens was identified. Tolerance of G. sulfurreducens to CO was confirmed by growing G. sulfurreducens with acetate under a 100 % CO atmosphere. This observation, along with the identification of acetogens, supports the hypothesis of the two-step process in which CO is converted to acetate by the carboxidotrophic Bacteria and acetate is then oxidized by CO-tolerant electricigenic Bacteria to produce electricity.
Keywords: MFC; Carbon monoxide; Geobacter sulfurreducens

Functional Analysis of the Extended N-Terminal Region in PLC-δ1 (MlPLC-δ1) from the Mud Loach, Misgurnus mizolepis by Na Young Kim; Sang Jung Ahn; Moo-Sang Kim; Jung Soo Seo; Se Hwan Jung; Sung Hwan Park; Hyung Ho Lee; Joon Ki Chung (727-740).
Mud loach phospholipase C-δ1 (MlPLC-δ1) contains all the characteristic domains found in mammalian PLC-δ isozymes (pleckstrin homology domain, EF-hands, X–Y catalytic region, and C2 domain) as well as an extended 26-amino acid (aa)-long N-terminal region that is an alternative splice form of PLC-δ1 and is novel to vertebrate PLC-δ. In the present structure–function analysis, deletion of the extended N-terminal region caused complete loss of phosphatidylinositol (PI)- and phosphatidylinositol 4,5-bisphosphate (PIP2)-hydrolyzing activity in MlPLC-δ1. Additionally, recombinant full-length MlPLC-δ1 PLC activity was reduced in a dose-dependent manner by coincubation with the 26-aa protein fragment. Using a protein–lipid overlay assay, both full-length MlPLC-δ1 and the 26-aa protein fragment had substantial affinity for PIP2, whereas deletion of the 26-aa region from MlPLC-δ1 (MlPLC-δ1-deletion) resulted in lower affinity for PIP2. These results suggest that the novel N-terminal exon of MlPLC-δ1 could play an important role in the regulation of PLC-δ1.
Keywords: Phospholipase C-δ; Mud loach; PH domain; Protein–lipid overlay assay; Phosphatidylinositol 4,5-bisphosphate (PIP2)

The present study aimed to investigate antifungal activity of a stilbene and diketopiperazine compounds against plant pathogenic fungi, including Phytophthora capsici, P. colocasiae, Botrytis cinerea and Colletotrichum gloeosporioides. Minimal inhibition concentrations (MIC) and minimal fungicidal concentrations (MFC) of stilbenes and diketopiperazines for each fungus were determined using microplate method. Best activity was recorded by stilbenes against P. capsici and P. colocasiae. All four test compounds were effective in inhibiting different stages of the life cycle of test fungi. Stilbenes were more effective than diketopiperazines in inhibiting mycelial growth and inhibiting different stages of the life cycle of P. capsici and P. colocasiae. Rupture of released zoospores induced by stilbenes was reduced by addition of 100 mM glucose. The effects of stilbenes on mycelial growth and zoospore release, but not zoospore rupture, were reduced largely when pH value was above 7. In addition, stilbenes were investigated for its antifungal stability against Phytophthora sp. The results showed that stilbenes maintained strong fungistatic activity over a wide pH range (pH 4–9) and temperature range (70–120 °C). The compound stilbenes exhibited strong and stable broad-spectrum antifungal activity, and had a significant fungicidal effect on fungal cells. Results from prebiocontrol evaluations performed to date are probably useful in the search for alternative approaches to controlling serious plant pathogens.
Keywords: Stilbenes; Plant pathogen; Phytophthora sp; Life cycle

Diphenyl Diselenide-Loaded Nanocapsules: Preparation and Biological Distribution by Camila F. A. Giordani; Diego de Souza; Luciano Dornelles; Cristina W. Nogueira; Marta P. Alves; Marina Prigol; Oscar E. D. Rodrigues (755-766).
Over the past years, organoselenium compounds have been aimed as targets of interest in organic synthesis. Diphenyl diselenide [(PhSe)2] is an important example of this class showing several pharmacological properties. However, the poor water-solubility and its low oral bioavailability may be considered an obstruction for the clinical utility of this compound. For this reason, the use of nanocapsules is a prominent approach to increase the bioavailability of lipophylic molecules. This study aims to prepare diphenyl diselenide-loaded nanocapsules with two different concentrations, by interfacial deposition of the preformed polymer in order to develop a system to improve its oral bioavailability. The drug-loaded nanocapsules with 1.56 and 5 mg ml−1 and unloaded nanocapsule suspensions presented macroscopic homogeneous aspect, as well as submicronic sizes, low polydispersity, negative zeta potentials and slightly acid or neutral pH values. The biological tests of selenium distribution in different tissues of mice show a higher bioavailability of the (PhSe)2 nanocapsules when compared with the free (PhSe)2, both administered by per oral route at the dose of 50 mg/kg, showing a prominent influence of the nanocarries systems for biological properties of this organochalcogenium compound.
Keywords: Selenium; Diphenyl diselenide [(PhSe)2]; (PhSe)2-loaded nanocapsules; Excretion; Distribution; Mice

A number of novel Penicillium strains belonging to Penicillium nalgiovense, Penicillium solitum, Penicillium commune, Penicillium olsonii, and Penicillium oxalicum species, isolated from the surface of traditional Greek sausages, were evaluated for their proteolytic and lipolytic potential in a solid substrate first and next in submerged fermentations, using complex media. Extracellular proteolytic activity was assessed at acid, neutral, and alkaline pH, while the lipolytic activity was assessed using olive oil, the short-chain triacylglycerol tributyrin, and the long-chain triolein, as substrates. The study revealed that although closely related, the tested strains produce enzymes of distinct specificities. P. nalgiovense PNA9 produced the highest alkaline proteolytic activity (13.2 unit (U)/ml) and the highest lipolytic activity with tributyrin (92 U/ml). Comparisons with known sources show that proteases and/or lipases can be secreted effectively by some Penicillia (P. nalgiovense PNA4, PNA7, and PNA9 and P. solitum PSO1), and further investigations on their properties and characteristics would be promising.
Keywords: Protease; Lipase; Penicillium nalgiovense ; Penicillium solitum ; Fermentation

Detoxifying CO2 Capture Reclaimer Waste by Anaerobic Digestion by Shuai Wang; Jon Hovland; Steven Brooks; Rune Bakke (776-783).
The decrease in toxicity of carbon capture reclaimer monoethanolamine (MEA) waste (MEAw) during anaerobic degradation of such waste together with easily degradable organics was investigated. Samples were collected from a bioreactor at steady state with 86 % organic chemical oxygen demand removal at room temperature, which had been running on MEAw for 2 years. The toxicity of the digester effluents were 126, 42 and 10 times lower than that of the MEAw to the tested freshwater trophic groups of Pseudokirchneriella subcapitata, Daphnia magna and embryos of Danio rerio, respectively. The toxicity of the tested taxonomic groups after anaerobic digestion was mainly attributed to the ammonia generated by the degradation of MEAw.
Keywords: Amine waste; Anaerobic digestion; CO2 capture; Detoxify; Toxic effect

Quercetin, a natural flavonoid, exhibits anticancer effects. The aim of this study is to determine whether the combination of quercetin with cisplatin, a conventional chemotherapeutic drug, would have synergistic suppressive effects on hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) cells. To this end, HepG2 cells were exposed to quercetin (50 μM) or cisplatin (10 μM) alone or combination of both and cell proliferation and apoptosis were investigated. Our data revealed that the combination of quercetin and cisplatin was significantly (P < 0.05) effective in inducing growth suppression and apoptosis in HepG2 cells, when compared with single agent treatment. Quercetin combined with cisplatin modulated the expression of numerous genes involved in cell cycle progression and apoptosis. Treatment with quercetin rather than cisplatin resulted in a marked elevation of p16 expression in HepG2 cells. Targeted reduction of p16 using RNA interference technology partially reversed quercetin-induced cell cycle G1 arrest and apoptosis in HepG2 cells. In conclusion, quercetin has suppressive activity against HCC cells through p16-mediated cell cycle arrest and apoptosis and its combination with cisplatin yielded synergistic inhibitory effects in suppressing cell growth and inducing apoptosis.
Keywords: Chemotherapy; Synergism; Hepatocellular carcinoma; Quercetin; p16

Extension of Polyphenolics by CWPO-C Peroxidase Mutant Containing Radical-Robust Surface Active Site by L. T. Mai Pham; S. Jin Kim; U. Suk Ahn; J. Weon Choi; B. Keun Song; Y. Hwan Kim (792-805).
Expressed as insoluble forms in Escherichia coli, native cationic cell wall peroxidase (CWPO-C) from the poplar tree and mutant variants were successfully reactivated via refolding experiments and used to elucidate the previously presumed existence of an electron transfer (ET) pathway in the CWPO-C structure. Their catalytic properties were fully characterized through various analyses including steady-state kinetic, direct oxidation of lignin macromolecules and their respective stabilities during the polymerization reactions. The analysis results proved that the 74th residue on the CWPO-C surface plays an important role in catalyzing the macromolecules via supposed ET mechanism. By comparing the residual activities of wild-type CWPO-C and mutant 74W CWPO-C after 3 min, mutation of tyrosine 74 residue to tryptophan increased the radical resistance of peroxidase up to ten times dramatically while maintaining its capability to oxidize lignin macromolecules. Furthermore, extension of poly(catechin) as well as lignin macromolecules with CWPO-C Y74W mutant clearly showed that this radical-resistant peroxidase mutant can increase the molecular weight of various kinds of polyphenolics by using surface-located active site. The anti-oxidation activity of the synthesized poly(catechin) was confirmed by xanthine oxidase assay. The elucidation of a uniquely catalytic mechanism in CWPO-C may improve the applicability of the peroxidase/H2O2 catalyst to green polymer chemistry.
Keywords: S-peroxidase; Electron transfer mechanism; Radical-robust; Poly(catechin); Cell wall peroxidase poplar

NAD+-dependent salicylaldehyde dehydrogenase (SALDH) which catalyzes the oxidation of salicylaldehyde to salicylate was purified form carbaryl-degrading Pseudomonas sp. strain C6. The enzyme was found to be a functional homotrimer (150 kDa) with subunit molecular mass of 50 kDa and contained calcium (1.8 mol/mol of enzyme). These properties were found to be unique. External addition of metal ions showed no effect on the activity and addition of chelators showed moderate inhibition of the activity. Potassium ions were found to enhance the activity significantly. SALDH showed higher affinity for salicylaldehyde (K m = 4.5 μM) and accepts mono- as well as di-aromatic aldehydes; however it showed poor activity on aliphatic aldehydes. Chloro-/nitro-substituted benzaldehydes were potent substrate inhibitors as compared to benzaldehyde and 3-hydroxybenzaldehyde, while 2-naphthaldehyde and salicylaldehyde were moderate. The kinetic data revealed that SALDH, though having broad specificity, is more efficient for the oxidation of salicylaldehyde as compared to other aromatic aldehyde dehydrogenases which gives an advantage for Pseudomonas sp. strain C6 to bioremediate carbaryl and other aromatic aldehydes efficiently.
Keywords: Aromatic aldehydes; Carbaryl metabolic pathway; Salicylaldehyde dehydrogenase; Kinetic characterization; Spectroscopic properties

In enhanced biological phosphorus removal (EBPR) process, phosphorus (P) in wastewater is removed via wasted sludge without actual recovery. A novel approach to realize phosphorus recovery with special external chemical oxygen demand (COD) addition in EBPR process was proposed. During the new operating approach period, it was found that (1) no phosphorus was detected in the effluent; (2) with an external addition of 10 % of influent COD amount, 79 % phosphorus in the wastewater influent was recovered; (3) without wasted sludge, the MLVSS concentration in the system increased from 2,010 to 3,400 mg/L and kept stable after day 11 during 24-day operating period. This demonstrates that the novel approach is feasible to realize phosphorus recovery with no wasted sludge discharge in EBPR process. Furthermore, this approach decouples P removal and sludge age, which may enhance the application of membrane bioreactor for P removal.
Keywords: Enhanced Biological Phosphorus Removal (EBPR); External COD Addition; No Wasted Sludge; Phosphorus Recovery

Nitrogen Removal by Chelatococcus daeguensis TAD1 and Its Denitrification Gene Identification by Yunlong Yang; Shaobin Huang; Yongqing Zhang; Fuqian Xu (829-839).
Chelatococcus daeguensis TAD1 was demonstrated to be an aerobic denitrifier. It can utilize not only nitrate and nitrite but also ammonium at high temperature (about 50 °C). The strain had the capability to remove 122.7 and 71.7 mg L−1 NH4 +-N by 18 h at 50 and 30 °C, respectively. Triplicate heterotrophic nitrification experiments showed that 32.3 % of removed NH4 +-N was completely converted to nitrogen gas by 18 h at 50 °C. The denitrification genes involved in C. daeguensis TAD1 were identified and sequenced. It was found that the genes responsible for denitrification in TAD1 were napA, nirK, cnorB, and nosZ. Taken together, TAD1 can be an effective candidate for simultaneous nitrification and denitrificaton at high temperature.
Keywords: Chelatococcus daeguensis TAD1; Nitrogen removal; Genes identification; High temperature

Perspective and Prospective of Pretreatment of Corn Straw for Butanol Production by Nawa Raj Baral; Jiangzheng Li; Ajay Kumar Jha (840-853).
Corn straw, lignocellulosic biomass, is a potential substrate for microbial production of bio-butanol. Bio-butanol is a superior second generation biofuel among its kinds. Present researches are focused on the selection of butanol tolerant clostridium strain(s) to optimize butanol yield in the fermentation broth because of toxicity of bio-butanol to the clostridium strain(s) itself. However, whatever the type of the strain(s) used, pretreatment process always affects not only the total sugar yield before fermentation but also the performance and growth of microbes during fermentation due to the formation of hydroxyl-methyl furfural, furfural and phenolic compounds. In addition, the lignocellulosic biomasses also resist physical and biological attacks. Thus, selection of best pretreatment process and its parameters is crucial. In this context, worldwide research efforts are increased in past 12 years and researchers are tried to identify the best pretreatment method, pretreatment conditions for the actual biomass. In this review, effect of particle size, status of most common pretreatment method and enzymatic hydrolysis particularly for corn straw as a substrate is presented. This paper also highlights crucial parameters necessary to consider during most common pretreatment processes such as hydrothermal, steam explosion, ammonia explosion, sulfuric acid, and sodium hydroxide pretreatment. Moreover, the prospective of pretreatment methods and challenges is discussed.
Keywords: Bio-butanol; Corn straw; Particle size; Pretreatment

Ornithine Carbamoyltransferase Unfolding States in the Presence of Urea and Guanidine Hydrochloride by D. Barreca; G. Laganà; S. Ficarra; E. Tellone; U. Leuzzi; A. Galtieri; E. Bellocco (854-866).
Ornithine carbamoyltransferase folding/unfolding is a complex and not completely understood process. Our experimental results suggest that ornithine carbamoyltransferase interacts in a completely different way with urea and guanidine hydrochloride. In fact, we noticed that, increasing concentration from 0.0 to 8.0 M of the two additives, the enzyme follows a simple one-step transition mechanism in the presence of guanidine hydrochloride, with two macroscopic states (the native and the denatured one) significantly populated, whereas in the presence of urea a lot of different protein states can be detected and analyzed. Circular dichroism and UV-visible spectroscopy reveal a similar mechanism of perturbation at high temperature, with opening of hydrophobic core and a significant loss in α-helix structure in the presence of guanidine hydrochloride that cannot be found in the presence of urea.
Keywords: Urea and guanidine hydrochloride; Spectroscopic determination; UGGE; Inactivation rate constant

Antioxidant and Biochemical Activities of Mixed Ligand Complexes by J. Joseph; G. AyishaBibin Rani (867-890).
Novel 4-aminoantipyrine based mixed ligand metal complexes with the Schiff bases ofL1(L1-4(furanylmethyleneamino)-1,5-dimethyl-2-phenyl-1H-pyrazol-3(2H)-one and L2/ L3/ L4are 2-(2-chlorobenzylideneamino)phenol, 2-(3-chlorobenzylideneamino)phenol, 2-(4-chlorobenzylideneamino)phenol were synthesized. The structures of the mixed ligand complexes were established by analytical and spectral techniques. They were screened for in vitro antimicrobial activity against bacteria and fungi by disc diffusion method. The interaction of metal complexes with CT-DNA was investigated by UV–vis, cyclic voltammetry, viscosity and thermal denaturation studies.DNA interaction studies suggest that metal complex binds to calf thymus DNA (CT-DNA) through intercalation mode. Superoxide dismutase activity of these complexes has also been studied. The free ligands and their metal complexes have been tested for in vitro antioxidant activity by the reduction of 1,1-diphenyl-2-picryl hydrazyl (DPPH).The antioxidant activities of the complexes were studied and compared with the activity of ascorbic acid. Cu(II) complex showed superior antioxidant activity than other complexes. The solvatochromic behaviour of complexes was also performed in various solvents.
Keywords: 4-Aminoantipyrine; Mixed ligand complex; Viscosity; DNA binding; Antioxidant activity; Antimicrobial activity; SOD

Glycerine pitch waste generated from oleochemical industry was exploited as a carbon source for poly(3-hydroxybutyrate-co-4-hydroxybutyrate) (P(3HB-co-4HB)) copolymer production by a novel, yellow-pigmented bacterium Cupriavidus sp. USMAHM13 to improve the economics of microbial polyhydroxyalkanoate production and to establish a feasible waste management approach. Medium optimization using response surface methodology through shake-flask fermentation had led to the accumulation of P(3HB-co-51%4HB) copolymer using a combination of glycerine pitch (10 g/l), 1,4-butanediol (8.14 g/l), and ammonium acetate (2.39 g/l). P(3HB-co-4HB) copolymers with 4HB monomer compositions ranged from 3 to 40 mol% were obtained through batch fermentation in a bioreactor using different concentrations of ammonium acetate. The copolymers exhibited a wide range of material properties depending on the monomer composition and type of carbon sources. P(3HB-co-40%4HB) was a typical random copolymer, whereas other P(3HB-co-4HB) produced were blend copolymers. Carotenoid pigment which was produced simultaneously with the polymer production was found to have negligible effect on the mechanical and thermal properties of the P(3HB-co-4HB) copolymer films.
Keywords: Ammonium acetate; Biopolymer; Carotenoid; Glycerine pitch; P(3HB-co-4HB)

Isolation, Purification and Characterisation of an Organic Solvent-Tolerant Ca2+-Dependent Protease from Bacillus megaterium AU02 by J Deepa Arul Priya; K Divakar; M Suryia Prabha; G Panneer Selvam; Pennathur Gautam (910-932).
A new organic solvent-tolerant strain Bacillus megaterium AU02 which secretes an organic solvent-tolerant protease was isolated from milk industry waste. Statistical methods were employed to achieve optimum protease production of 43.6 U/ml in shake flask cultures. The productivity of the protease was increased to 53 U/ml when cultivated under controlled conditions in a 7-L fermentor. The protease was purified to homogeneity by a three-step process with 24 % yield and specific activity of 5,375 U/mg. The molecular mass of the protease was found to be 59 kDa. The enzyme was active over a wide range of pH (6.0–9.0), with an optimum activity at pH 7.0 and temperature from 40 to 70 °C having an optimum activity at 50 °C. The thermal stability of the enzyme increased significantly in the presence of CaCl2, and it retained 90 % activity at 50 °C for 3 h. The K m and V max values were determined as 0.722 mg/ml and 0.018 U/mg respectively. The metalloprotease exhibited significant stability in the presence of organic solvents with log P values more than 2.5, nonionic detergents and oxidising agent. An attempt was made to test the synthesis of aspartame precursor (Cbz-Asp-Phe-NH2) which was catalysed by AU02 protease in the presence of 50 % DMSO. These properties of AU02 protease make it an ideal choice for enzymatic peptide synthesis in organic media.
Keywords: Bacillus megaterium ; Bioreactor; Calcium dependent; Neutral protease; Purification; Response surface methodology; Solvent stable

Exopolysaccharides and Antimicrobial Biosurfactants Produced by Paenibacillus macerans TKU029 by Tzu-Wen Liang; Chia-Chen Wu; Wei-Ting Cheng; Yu-Chi Chen; Chuan-Lu Wang; I-Li Wang; San-Lang Wang (933-950).
Paenibacillus macerans TKU029 can produce exopolysaccharides (EPSs; 3.46 g/L) and a biosurfactant (1.78 g/L) in a medium with 2 % (w/v) squid pen powder as the sole carbon/nitrogen source. The biosurfactant can reduce the surface tension of water from 72.30 to 35.34 mN/m at a concentration of 2.76 g/L and reach an emulsification index of 56 % after a 24-h reaction with machine oil. This biosurfactant is stable at 121 °C for 20 min, over a pH range from 3 to 11, and in <5 % salt solutions. It also shows significant antimicrobial activity, which remains active after treatment at 121 °C and at pH values from 4 to 10, against Escherichia coli BCRC13086, Staphylococcus aureus BCRC10780, Fusarium oxysporum BCRC32121 and Aspergillus fumigatus BCRC30099. Furthermore, human skin shows from 37.3 to 44.3 % hydration after being treated with TKU029 EPSs for 180 min. These results imply that EPSs and the biosurfactant from this strain have potential in cosmetics, for removal of oil contamination, and as antimicrobial agents.
Keywords: Paenibacillus macerans ; Exopolysaccharides; Biosurfactant; Antimicrobial activity; Skin hydration; Squid pen

Dynamic Changes in the Composite Microbial System MC1 During and Following its Rapid Degradation of Lignocellulose by Binbin Hua; Yucai Lü; Jungang Wang; Boting Wen; Yanzhuan Cao; Xiaofen Wang; Zongjun Cui (951-962).
To monitor the dynamics of the composite microbial system MC1 during its degradation of lignocellulose and to improve our understanding of the microbial communities involved in this biomass conversion, MC1 was characterized at eight time points over an 18-day, thermophilic, aerobic, static cultivation. We found the microbial communities to be dynamic, rhythmic consortia capable of changing in response to lignocellulose degradation. The growth curve over 18 days was M-shaped. Based on the quantitative changes in five major components of MC1 (Clostridium straminisolvens CSK-1, Clostridium sp. FG4, Pseudoxanthomonas sp. M1-3, Brevibacillus sp. M1-5, and Bordetella sp. M1-6), reduction in rice straw weight, cellulase (CMCase) activity, xylanase activity, and changes in medium pH, we found that the process comprised two identifiable phases. Rapid degradation occurred from day 0 to day 9, while the post-rapid degradation phase included days 10 to 18. Day 3 and day 12 were two key time points in the rapid degradation phase and post-rapid degradation phase, respectively. Two anaerobes, C. straminisolvens CSK-1 and Clostridium sp. FG4, dominated the MC1 system from day 0 to day 18.
Keywords: Microflora; Rice straw degradation; Q-PCR; Stage; Key time points

Ethanol fermentation with Saccharomyces cerevisiae cells was performed in medium with different glucose concentrations. As the glucose content augmented from 200 to 250 g/L, the growth of the immobilized cells did not change while that of the free cells was reduced. At higher glucose concentration (300, 350, and 400 g/L), the cell proliferation significantly decreased and the residual sugar level sharply augmented for both the immobilized and free yeast. The specific growth rate of the immobilized cells was 27–65 % higher than that of the free cells, and the final ethanol concentration in the immobilized yeast cultures was 9.7–18.5 % higher than that in the free yeast cultures. However, the immobilized yeast demonstrated similar or slightly lower ethanol yield in comparison with the free yeast. High fermentation rate of the immobilized yeast was associated with low unsaturation degree of fatty acids in cellular membrane. Adsorption of S. cerevisiae cells on water hyacinth stem pieces in the nutritional medium decreased the unsaturation degree of membrane lipid and the immobilized yeast always exhibited lower unsaturation degree of membrane lipid than the free yeast in ethanol fermentation.
Keywords: Fatty acid; High density medium; Immobilized yeast; Saccharomyces cerevisiae ; Water hyacinth

Probiotic lactic acid bacteria are being proposed to cure peptic ulcers by reducing colonization of Helicobacter pylori within the stomach mucosa and by eradicating already established infection. In lieu of that, in vitro inhibitory activity of pediocin-producing probiotic Pediococcus acidilactici BA28 was evaluated against H. pylori by growth inhibition assays. Further, chronic gastritis was first induced in two groups of C57BL/6 mice by orogastric inoculation with H. pylori with polyethylene catheter, and probiotic P. acidilactici BA28 was orally administered to study the eradication and cure of peptic ulcer disease. H. pylori and P. acidilactici BA28 were detected in gastric biopsy and fecal samples of mice, respectively. A probiotic treatment with P. acidilactici BA28, which is able to eliminate H. pylori infection and could reverse peptic ulcer disease, is being suggested as a co-adjustment with conventional antibiotic treatment. The study provided an evidence of controlling peptic ulcer disease, by diet modulation.
Keywords: Pediococcus acidilactici ; Helicobacter pylori ; Probiotic; Bacteriocin; Gastric biopsy; Peptic ulcer

Every year, seasonal epidemics of influenza viruses are causing considerable morbidity and mortality worldwide. Also infrequent novel and rearranged strains of influenza viruses have caused quick, acute universal pandemics resulting in millions of mortalities. The usage of efficient and accurate detection is superior for infection control, effective treatment, and epidemiological supervision. Therefore, evaluation of useful real-time PCR molecular tests for the detection of pandemic viruses is important before the next wave of the pandemic. A novel quantitative real-time reverse-transcription polymerase chain reaction (qRT-PCR) assay with specific primers was used successfully for detection and monitoring of the influenza A, B, and swine influenza. The newly designed primers target highly conserved regions in influenza viruses. Our qRT-PCR assay is highly specific for detecting influenza A, B, and swine influenza viruses. The cutoff CT value was determined <38 for domestic human diagnostic test, under conditions of FDA emergency, and the reaction efficiency of the InfA, swInfA, and InfB assays were thereby estimated to be 97.9 % (R2 = 0.998), 98.3 % (R2 = 0.986), and 99.5 % (R2 = 0.995), respectively. Interestingly, based on our finding, there is no cross reactivity of detecting other viruses.
Keywords: Influenza A; Influenza B; Swine influenza; rRT-PCR; Real-time PCR

A monomeric feruloyl esterase (FAE) with a molecular mass of 62 kDa was acquired from fresh fruiting bodies of the edible mushroom Russula virescens. The isolation procedure involved ion exchange chromatography on CM-cellulose, Q-Sepharose, and SP-Sepharose and finally fast protein liquid chromatography–gel filtration on Superdex 75. Two amino acid sequences were obtained after tryptic digestion, and they both showed some homology with the esterase of some fungi. Maximal activity was observed at pH 5.0 and at 50 °C. The enzyme displayed relatively high thermostability as evidenced by over 70 % residual activity at 70 °C and about 34 % residual activity at 80 °C. The K m and V max for this enzyme on methyl ferulate were 0.19 mM and 1.65 U/mg proteins, respectively. The purified FAE prefers methyl ferulate over methyl caffeate and is least active on methyl p-coumarate. The FAE activity was not significantly affected by the presence of cations such as Mn2+, Ca2+, Cd2+, Zn2+, Mg2+, Cu2+, and K+ ions but inhibited by Al3+, Hg2+, Fe2+, and Pb2+ ions at a tested concentration of 2. 5 mM.
Keywords: Feruloyl esterase (FAE); Edible mushroom; Russula virescens ; Purification; Characterization

Investigation of Growth Conditions for the Expansion of Porcine Mesenchymal Stem Cells on Microcarriers in Stirred Cultures by Caroline Ferrari; Eric Olmos; Frédérique Balandras; Nguyen Tran; Isabelle Chevalot; Emmanuel Guedon; Annie Marc (1004-1017).
The extensive use of mesenchymal stem cells (MCS) in tissue engineering and cell therapy increases the necessity to improve their expansion. Among these, porcine MCS are valuable models for tissue engineering and are classically expanded in static T-flasks. In this work, different processes of stirred cultures were evaluated and compared. First, the effect of glucose, glutamine, antioxidant, and growth factors concentrations on porcine MSC expansion were analyzed in a suitable medium by performing kinetic studies. Results showed that a lower glucose concentration (5.5 mM) enabled to increase maximal cell concentration by 40 % compared with a higher one (25 mM), while addition of 2 to 6 mM of glutamine increased maximal cell concentration by more than 25 % compared with no glutamine supplementation. Moreover, supplementation with 1 μM thioctic acid increased maximal cell concentration by 40 % compared with no supplementation. Using this adapted medium, microcarriers cultures were performed and compared with T-flasks expansion. Porcine MSC were shown to be able to proliferate on the five types of microcarriers tested. Moreover, cultures on Cytodex 1, Cytopore 2, and Cultispher G exhibited a MSC growth rate more than 40 % higher compared with expansion in T-flasks, while MSC metabolism was similar.
Keywords: Porcine MSC; Expansion; Microcarriers; Stirred culture; Culture medium

A sensitive electrochemical aptasensor was developed with conductive graphene served as platform and inert graphene oxide (GO) as enhancer. An electrodeposited nano-Au layer was firstly formed on conductive graphene modified glass carbon electrode surface for further immobilizing of electrochemical redox probe hexacyanoferrates nanoparticles (NiHCFNPs). Subsequently, another nano-Au layer was formed for immobilizing of thrombin aptamer (TBA). In the presence of thrombin, the TBA on the electrode surface could bind with thrombin, which made a barrier for electrons and inhibited the electro-transfer, resulting in the decreased electrochemical signals of NiHCFNPs. Owing to the non-conductivity property of graphene oxide, further decreased electrochemical signals of NiHCFNPs could be obtained via the sandwich reaction with GO-labeled TBA. According to the signal changes before the thrombin recognition and after sandwich reaction, trace detection of thrombin could be achieved. As a result, the proposed approach showed a high sensitivity and a wider linearity to thrombin in the range from 0.005 nM to 50 nM with a detection limit of 1 pM.
Keywords: Electrochemical aptasensor; Graphene; Thrombin; Graphene oxide (GO); NiHCFNPs

Cunninghamella blakesleeana- JSK2, a gamma-linolenic acid (GLA) producing tropical fungal isolate, was utilized as a tool to evaluate the influence of various plant seed oils on biomass, oleagenicity and bio-fuel production. The fungus accumulated 26 % total lipid of their dry biomass (2 g/l) and 13 % of GLA in its total fatty acid. Among the various plant seed oils tested as carbon sources for biotransformation studies, watermelon oil had an effect on biomass and total lipid increasing up to 9.24 g/l and 34 % respectively. Sunflower, pumpkin, and onion oil increased GLA content between 15–18 %. Interestingly, an indigenous biodiesel commodity, Pongamia pinnata oil showed tremendous effect on fatty acid profile in C. blakesleeana- JSK2, when used as a sole source of carbon. There was complete inhibition of GLA from 13 to 0 % and increase in oleic acid content, one of the key components of biodiesel to 70 % (from 20 % in control). Our results suggest the potential application of indigenous plant seed oils, particularly P. pinnata oil, for the production of economically valuable bio-fuel in oleaginous fungi in general, and C. blakesleeana- JSK2, in particular.
Keywords: Cunninghamella blakesleeana- JSK2; Biotransformation; Gamma-Linolenic Acid; Biodiesel

A New Near-Infrared Neutral pH Fluorescent Probe for Monitoring Minor pH Changes and its Application in Imaging of HepG2 Cells by Chunlong Sun; Peng Wang; Lushen Li; Gaoxin Zhou; Xi Zong; Bing Hu; Rui Zhang; Jin Cai; Junqing Chen; Min Ji (1036-1044).
A new near-neutral pH near-infrared (NIR) fluorescent probe utilizing a fluorophore–receptor molecular framework that can modulate the fluorescence emission intensity through a fast photoinduced electron transfer process was developed. Our strategy was to choose tricarbocyanine (Cy), a NIR fluorescent dye with high extinction coefficients, as a fluorophore, and N-methylpiperazine (MP) as a receptor. The pH titration indicated that MP-Cy can monitor the minor physiological pH fluctuations with a pKa of ∼7.10 near physiological pH, which is valuable for intracellular pH researches. The probe responds linearly and rapidly to minor pH fluctuations within the range of 3.05–7.10 and exhibits strong dependence on pH changes. As expected, the real-time imaging of cellular pH and the detection of pH in situ was achieved successfully in living HepG2 cells by this probe. It is shown that the probe effectively avoids the influence of autofluorescence and native cellular species in biological systems and meanwhile exhibits high sensitivity, good photostability, and excellent cell membrane permeability.
Keywords: Heptamethine cyanine; pH sensor; Fluorescent image

Fungal Cellulase/Xylanase Production and Corresponding Hydrolysis Using Pretreated Corn Stover as Substrates by Liang Zhang; Xiaoqing Wang; Zhenhua Ruan; Ying Liu; Xiaorui Niu; Zhengbo Yue; Zhimin Li; Wei Liao; Yan Liu (1045-1054).
Three pretreated corn stover (ammonia fiber expansion, dilute acid, and dilute alkali) were used as carbon source to culture Trichoderma reesei Rut C-30 for cellulase and xylanase production. The results indicated that the cultures on ammonia fiber expansion and alkali pretreated corn stover had better enzyme production than the acid pretreated ones. The consequent enzymatic hydrolysis was performed applying fungal enzymes on pretreated corn stover samples. Tukey’s statistical comparisons exhibited that there were significant differences on enzymatic hydrolysis among different combination of fungal enzymes and pretreated corn stover. The higher sugar yields were achieved by the enzymatic hydrolysis of dilute alkali pretreated corn stover.
Keywords: Trichoderma reesei ; Pretreated corn stover; Cellulase; Xylanase; Enzymatic hydrolysis

Microstructural and Potential Dependence Studies of Urease-Immobilized Gold Nanoparticles–Polypyrrole Composite Film for Urea Detection by Rajesh; Nidhi Puri; Sujeet K. Mishra; Mariam J. Laskar; Avanish K. Srivastava (1055-1069).
Gold nanoparticle–polypyrrole nanocomposite film was electrochemically deposited in a single-step polymerization of pyrrole in the presence of 3-mercaptopropionic acid (MPA)-capped gold nanoparticles (GNPs) and p-toluenesulfonic acid (pTSA) on the surface of an indium tin oxide (ITO)-coated glass plate. The carboxyl functional groups surrounding the GNPs within the polymer matrix were utilized for the immobilization of urease enzyme through carbodiimide coupling reaction for the construction of a Urs/GNP(MPA)–PPy/ITO-glass bioelectrode for urea detection in Tris–HCl buffer. The resulting bioelectrode film was characterized by atomic force microscopy (AFM), high-resolution transmission electron microscopy (HRTEM), contact angle measurement, Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy (FTIR), and electrochemical techniques. The potentiometric response of the bioelectrode made of polymer nanocomposite films of two different thicknesses prepared at 100 and 250 mC cm−2 charge densities, respectively, was studied towards the urea concentration in Tris–HCl buffer (pH 7.4). The thin polymer nanocomposite film-based bioelectrode prepared at 100 mC cm−2 charge density exhibited a comparatively good potentiometric response than a thick 250 mC cm−2 charge density film with a linear range of urea detection from 0.01 to 10 mM with a sensitivity of 29.7 mV per decade.
Keywords: Polymer; Enzyme; Electrochemical impedance spectroscopy; Electron microscopy

Here, we demonstrate the micropropagation protocol of Argyrolobium roseum (Camb.), an endangered herb exhibiting anti-diabetic and immune-suppressant properties, and antioxidant enzymes pattern is evaluated. Maximum callogenic response (60 %) was observed from leaf explant at 1.0 mg L−1 1-nephthalene acetic acid (NAA) and 0.5 mg L−1 6-benzyl aminopurine (BA) in Murashige and Skoog (MS) medium using hypocotyl and root explants (48 % each). Addition of AgNO3 and PVP in the culture medium led to an increase in callogenic response up to 86 % from leaf explant and 72 % from hypocotyl and root explants. The best shooting response was observed in the presence of NAA, while maximum shoot length and number of shoots were achieved based on BA-supplemented MS medium. The regenerated shoots were rooted and successfully acclimatized under greenhouse conditions. Catalase and peroxidase enzymes showed ascending pattern during in vitro plant development from seed while ascorbate peroxidase showed descending pattern. Totally reverse response of these enzymes was observed during callus induction from three different explants. During shoot induction, catalase and peroxidase increased at high rate while there was a mild reduction in ascorbate peroxidase activity. Catalase and peroxidase continuously increased; on the other hand, ascorbate peroxidase activity decreased during root development and acclimatization states. The protocol described here can be employed for the mass propagation and genetic transformation of this rare herb. This study also highlights the importance and role of ascorbate peroxidase, catalase, and peroxidase in the establishment of A. roseum in vitro culture through callogenesis and organogenesis.
Keywords: Ascorbate peroxidase; Catalase; Callus; Peroxidase; Plant growth regulator; Reactive oxygen species; Shooting

Depletion of the xynB2 Gene Upregulates β-Xylosidase Expression in C. crescentus by Juliana Moço Corrêa; Moara Rodrigues Mingori; Rinaldo Ferreira Gandra; Eduardo Alexandre Loth; Flávio Augusto Vicente Seixas; Rita de Cássia Garcia Simão (1085-1097).
Caulobacter crescentus is able to express several enzymes involved in the utilization of lignocellulosic biomasses. Five genes, xynB15, that encode β-xylosidases are present in the genome of this bacterium. In this study, the xynB2 gene, which encodes β-xylosidase II (CCNA_02442), was cloned under the control of the PxylX promoter to generate the O-xynB2 strain, which overexpresses the enzyme in the presence of xylose. In addition, a null mutant strain, Δ-xynB2, was created by two homologous recombination events where the chromosomal xynB2 gene was replaced by a copy that was disrupted by the spectinomycin-resistant cassette. We demonstrated that C. crescentus cells lacking β-xylosidase II upregulates the xynB genes inducing β-xylosidase activity. Transcriptional analysis revealed that xynB1 (RT-PCR analysis) and xynB2 (lacZ transcription fusion) gene expression was induced in the Δ-xynB2 cells, and high β-xylosidase activity was observed in the presence of different agro-industrial residues in the null mutant strain, a characteristic that can be explored and applied in biotechnological processes. In contrast, overexpression of the xynB2 gene caused downregulation of the expression and activity of the β-xylosidase. For example, the β-xylosidase activity that was obtained in the presence of sugarcane bagasse was 7-fold and 16-fold higher than the activity measured in the C. crescentus parental and O-xynB2 cells, respectively. Our results suggest that β-xylosidase II may have a role in controlling the expression of the xynB1 and xynB2 genes in C. crescentus.
Keywords: Caulobacter crescentus ; β-xylosidase; Gene expression; Xylose; Mutant cells; Agro-industrial residue

Antifungal Activity of Microgramma vacciniifolia Rhizome Lectin on Genetically Distinct Fusarium oxysporum f. sp. lycopersici Races by Lidiane Pereira de Albuquerque; Giselly Maria de Sá Santana; Thiago Henrique Napoleão; Luana Cassandra Breitenbach Barroso Coelho; Márcia Vanusa da Silva; Patrícia Maria Guedes Paiva (1098-1105).
Fusarium oxysporum f. sp. lycopersici races 1, 2, and 3 deteriorate tomato crops since they cause a vascular wilt. Lectins are carbohydrate-binding proteins with hemagglutinating and antifungal activities. This work reports that Microgramma vacciniifolia rhizome lectin (MvRL) inhibits F. oxysporum f. sp. lycopersici race 3 growth (61 %) more intensely than of races 1 (55 %) and 2 (45 %). The hemagglutinating activity of MvRL was inhibited by glycoprotein preparations from mycelia of races 1, 2, and 3, and these data indicate that lectin carbohydrate-binding sites recognized glycosylated molecules from races. Inter-simple sequence repeat (ISSR) marker system showed that race 3 is genetically distinct from races 1 and 2, and thus the highest sensitiveness of F. oxysporum f. sp. lycopersici race 3 to MvRL may be due to molecular characteristics of this race.
Keywords: Microgramma vacciniifolia ; Rhizome lectin; Antifungal activity; Fusarium oxysporum f. sp. lycopersici ; ISSR

Mineralization of Reactive Brilliant Red X-3B by a combined anaerobic–aerobic process which was inoculated with the co-culture of Penicillium sp. QQ and Exiguobacterium sp. TL was studied. The optimal conditions of decolorization were investigated by response surface methodology as follows: 132.67 g/L of strain QQ wet spores, 1.09 g/L of strain TL wet cells, 2.25 g/L of glucose, 2.10 g/L of yeast extract, the initial dye concentration of 235.14 mg/L, pH 6.5, and 33 °C. The maximal decolorization rate was about 96 % within 12 h under the above conditions. According to the Haldane kinetic equation, the maximal specific decolorization rate was 89.629 mg/g˙h. It was suggested that in the anaerobic–aerobic combined process, decolorization occurred in the anaerobic unit and chemical oxygen demand (COD) was mainly removed in the aerobic one. Inoculation of fungus QQ in the anaerobic unit was important for mineralization of X-3B. Besides, the divided anaerobic–aerobic process showed better performance of COD removal than the integrated one. It was suggested that the combined anaerobic–aerobic process which was inoculated with co-culture was potentially useful for the field application.
Keywords: Azo dyes; Mineralization; Response surface methodology (RSM); Co-culture; Anaerobic–aerobic process

Cultivation of Chlorella vulgaris in Dairy Wastewater Pretreated by UV Irradiation and Sodium Hypochlorite by Lei Qin; Qing Shu; Zhongming Wang; Changhua Shang; Shunni Zhu; Jingliang Xu; Rongqing Li; Liandong Zhu; Zhenhong Yuan (1121-1130).
There is potential in the utilization of microalgae for the purification of wastewater as well as recycling the resource in the wastewater to produce biodiesel. The large-scale cultivation of microalgae requires pretreatment of the wastewater to eliminate bacteria and protozoa. This procedure is costly and complex. In this study, two methods of pretreatment, UV irradiation, and sodium hypochlorite (NaClO), in various doses and concentrations, were tested in the dairy wastewater. Combining the efficiency of biodiesel production, we proposed to treat the dairy wastewater with NaClO in the concentration of 30 ppm. In this condition, The highest biomass productivity and lipid productivity of Chlorella vulgaris reached 0.450 g L−1 day−1 and 51 mg L−1 day−1 after a 4-day cultivation in the dairy wastewater, respectively.
Keywords: Dairy Wastewater; Chlorella vulgaris ; UV Irradiation; Sodium Hypochlorite Pretreatment; Large-Scale Cultivation

Cryopreservation of Brassidium Shooting Star Orchid Using the PVS3 Method Supported with Preliminary Histological Analysis by Safiah Ahmad Mubbarakh; Safrina Rahmah; Zuraida Abdul Rahman; Nazrin Nadirah Mohd Sah; Sreeramanan Subramaniam (1131-1145).
Cryopreservation is an alternative, safe, and cost-effective method for long-term plant genetic resource conservation. This study was conducted to optimize the conditions for cryopreserving the protocorm-like bodies (PLBs) of Brassidium Shooting Star orchid with the PVS3 vitrification method. Five parameters were assessed in this study: PLB size, sucrose concentration, preculture duration, PVS3 duration, and unloading duration. The viability of the cryopreserved PLBs was determined using the triphenytetrazolium chloride assay and growth recovery assessments. The optimum condition for the cryopreservation of the PLBs of Brassidium Shooting Star orchid is based on the size range between 3 and 4 mm precultured with half-strength semi-solid MS media supplemented with 0.25 M sucrose for 24 h, followed by treatment with loading solution mixture of 2 M glycerol and 0.4 M sucrose supplemented with half-strength liquid MS media at 25 °C for 20 min. The PLBs were then dehydrated with PVS3 at 0 °C for 20 min prior to immersion in liquid nitrogen; finally, the PLBs were immersed with half-strength liquid MS media supplemented with 1.2 M sucrose for 30 min. Histological analyses displayed denser cytoplasm and voluminous nucleus in the cryopreserved PLBs of Brassidium Shooting Star orchid.
Keywords: Brassidium Shooting Star orchid; Cryopreservation; Vitrification; Histology