The increased availability and production of lignocellulosic agroindustrial wastes has originated proposals for their use as raw material to obtain biofuels (ethanol and biodiesel) or derived products. However, for biomass generated from lignocellulosic residues to be successfully degraded, in most cases it requires a physical (thermal), chemical, or enzymatic pretreatment before the application of microbial or enzymatic fermentation technologies (biocatalysis). In the context of enzymatic technologies, fungi have demonstrated to produce enzymes capable of degrading polysaccharides like cellulose, hemicelluloses and pectin. Because of this ability for degrading lignocellulosic material, researchers are making efforts to isolate and identify fungal enzymes that could have a better activity for the degradation of plant cell walls and agroindustrial biomass. We performed an in silico analysis of alpha-glucoronidase in 82 accessions of the genus Aspergillus. The constructed dendrograms of amino acid sequences defined the formation of 6 groups (I, II, III, IV, V, and VI), which demonstrates the high diversity of the enzyme. Despite this ample divergence between enzyme groups, our 3D structure modeling showed both conservation and differences in amino acid residues participating in enzyme–substrate binding, which indicates the possibility that some enzymes are functionally specialized for the specific degradation of a substrate depending on the genetics of each species in the genus and the condition of the habitat where they evolved. The identification of alpha-glucuronidase isoenzymes would allow future use of genetic engineering and biocatalysis technologies aimed at specific production of the enzyme for its use in biotransformation.
- Bioinformatic analysis
- Fungal enzymes