Location: Bioproducts ResearchTitle: Combinatorial enzyme technology for the conversion of agricultural fibers to functional properties
Submitted to: American Chemical Society Abstracts
Publication Type: Abstract Only
Publication Acceptance Date: 12/22/2016
Publication Date: N/A
Technical Abstract: The concept of combinatorial chemistry has received little attention in agriculture and food research, although its applications in this area were described more than fifteen years ago (1, 2). More recently, interest in the use of combinatorial chemistry in agrochemical discovery has been revitalized (3, 4).The power of the concept arises from the immense number of candidate molecules that can be created from a parent molecule, forming a diverse library for target screening. Plant cell wall polysaccharides consist of polymeric backbones carrying various types of substitutions. For example, xylan contains a beta-1,4-linked xylopyranosyl chain decorated with at least six types of side groups. Likewise, pectin consists of complex side chain structures that can be targeted by specific enzymes. This type of architecture makes the biopolymer particularly suitable for the application of the combinatorial chemistry concept. The use of enzymes to surgically remove the side groups individually and in combination would alter the degradation pattern of the main chain, resulting in a diverse library of hydrolytic products. The structural variation would in turn translate into uniquely different reactivity and functional properties. Preliminary studies applying the concept to the bioconversion of xylan and pectin have resulted in oligo fragments with modulating action on microbial cell growth. (1) Wong, D. W. S., and Robertson, G. H. 1999. Combinatorial chemistry and applications in agricultural and food. In: Chemicals via Higher Plant Bioengineering, ed. Shahidi et al. Plenum Publishers, New York. (2) Wong, D. W. S., and Robertson, G. H. 2004. Applying combinatorial chemistry and biology to food research. J. Agric. Food Chem. 52, 7187-7198. (3) Lindell, S. D., Patterden, L. C., and Shannon, J. 2008. Combinatorial chemistry in agrosciences. Bioorganiic & Medicinal Chemistry 17, 4035-4045. (4) Lamberth, C., Jeanmart, S., Luksch, T., and Plant, A. 2013. Current challenges and trends in the discovery of agrochemicals. Science 341, 742-746.