Cellulosomes: bacterial nanomachines for dismantling plant polysaccharides.

Nat Rev Microbiol 2017 02 12;15(2):83-95. Epub 2016 Dec 12.

Department of Biomolecular Sciences, The Weizmann Institute of Science, 234 Herzl Street, Rehovot 7610001, Israel.

Cellulosomes are multienzyme complexes that are produced by anaerobic cellulolytic bacteria for the degradation of lignocellulosic biomass. They comprise a complex of scaffoldin, which is the structural subunit, and various enzymatic subunits. The intersubunit interactions in these multienzyme complexes are mediated by cohesin and dockerin modules. Cellulosome-producing bacteria have been isolated from a large variety of environments, which reflects their prevalence and the importance of this microbial enzymatic strategy. In a given species, cellulosomes exhibit intrinsic heterogeneity, and between species there is a broad diversity in the composition and configuration of cellulosomes. With the development of modern technologies, such as genomics and proteomics, the full protein content of cellulosomes and their expression levels can now be assessed and the regulatory mechanisms identified. Owing to their highly efficient organization and hydrolytic activity, cellulosomes hold immense potential for application in the degradation of biomass and are the focus of much effort to engineer an ideal microorganism for the conversion of lignocellulose to valuable products, such as biofuels.

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http://dx.doi.org/10.1038/nrmicro.2016.164DOI Listing
February 2017
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