Applied Biochemistry and Biotechnology

, Volume 96, Issue 1–3, pp 71–82 | Cite as

Semi-solid-state fermentation of Eicchornia crassipes biomass as lignocellulosic biopolymer for cellulase and β-glucosidase production by cocultivation of Aspergillus niger RK3 and Trichoderma reesei MTCC164



An aquatic weed biomass, Eicchornia crassipes, present in abundance and leading to a threatening level of water pollution was used as substrate for cellulase and β-glucosidase production using wild-type strain Aspergillus niger RK3 that was isolated from decomposing substrate. Alkali treatment of the biomass (10%) resulted in a 60–66% increase in endoglucanase, exoglucanase, and β-glucosidase production by the A. niger RK3 strain in semi-solid-state fermentation. Similarly, the alkali-treated biomass led to a 45–54% increase in endo- and exoglucanase and a higher (98%) increase in β-glucosidase production by Trichoderma reesei MTCC164 under similar conditions. However, the cocultivation of A. niger RK3 and T. reesei MTCC164 at a ratio of 3:1 showed a 20–24% increase in endo- and exoglucanase activities and about a 13% increase in the β-glucosidase activity over the maximum enzymatic activities observed under single culture conditions. Multistep physical (ultraviolet) and chemical (N-methyl-N′-nitrosoguanidine, sodium azide, colchicine) mutagenesis of the A. niger RK3 strain resulted in a highly cellulolytic mutant, UNSC-442, having an increase of 136, 138, and 96% in endoglucanase, exoglucanase, and β-glucosidase, activity, respectively. The cocultivation of mutant UNSC-442 along with T. reesei MTCC164 (at a ratio of 3:1) showed a further 10–11% increase in endo- and exoglucanase activities and a 29% increase in β-glucosidase activity in semi-solid-state fermentation.

Index Entries

Cellulase β-glucosidase Eicchornia crassipes cocultivation mutagenesis 


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Copyright information

© Humana Press Inc. 2001

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Biosciences and BiotechnologyUniversity of RoorkeeRoorkeeIndia

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