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Extracellular oxidases and the transformation of solubilized low-rank coal by wood-rot fungi

Ralph, J.P., Graham, L.A., Catchside, D.E.A.
Applied microbiology and biotechnology 1996 v.46 no.3 pp. 226-232
Coriolus versicolor, Ganoderma applanatum, Gloeophyllum trabeum, Lentinus lepideus, Phanerochaete chrysosporium, Phlebia tremellosa, Pycnoporus, Rigidoporus, absorbance, aryl-alcohol oxidase, biotransformation, brown-rot fungi, coal, laccase, lignin, lignin peroxidase, manganese, metabolism, molecular weight, oxygen, pH, peroxidase, polymerization, sodium hydroxide, solubilization, white-rot fungi
The involvement of extracellular oxidases in biotransformation of low-rank coal was assessed by correlating the ability of nine white-rot and brown-rot fungi to alter macromolecular material in alkali-solubilised brown coal with the spectrum of oxidases they produce when grown on low-nitrogen medium. The coal fraction used was that soluble at 3.0 less than or equal to pH less than or equal to 6.0 (SWC6 coal). In 15-ml cultures, Gloeophyllum trabeum, Lentinus lepideus and Trametes versicolor produced little or no lignin peroxidase, manganese (Mn) peroxidase or laccase activity and caused no change to SWC6 coal. Ganoderma applanatum and Pycnoporus cinnabarinus also produced no detectable lignin or Mn peroxidases or laccase yet increased the absorbance at 400 nm of SWC6 coal. G. applanatum, which produced veratryl alcohol oxidase, also increased the modal apparent molecular mass. SWC6 coal exposed to Merulius tremellosus and Perenniporia tephropora, which secreted Mn peroxidases and laccase and Phanerochaete chrysosporium, which produced Mn and lignin neroxidases was polymerised but had unchanged or decreased absorbance. In the case of both P. chrysosporium and M. tremellosus, polymerisation of SWC6 coal was most extensive, leading to the formation of a complex insoluble in 100 mM NaOH. Rigidoporus ulmarius, which produced only laccase, both polymerised and reduced the A400 of SWC6 coal. P. chrysosporium, M. tremellosus and P. tephropora grown in 10-ml cultures produced a spectrum of oxidases similar to that in 15-ml cultures but, in each case, caused more extensive loss of A400, and P. chrysosporium depolymerised SWC6 coal. It is concluded that the extracellular oxidases of white-rot fungi can transform low-rank coal macromolecules and that increased oxygen availability in the shallower 10-ml cultures favours catabolism over polymerisation.