Biosynthesis of Fungal Chitinolytic Enzymes and Their Potent Biotechnological Appliances

  • Suman Kumar HalderEmail author
  • Shilpee Pal
  • Keshab Chandra Mondal
Part of the Fungal Biology book series (FUNGBIO)


Chitin is the world’s second most abundant polysaccharide (after cellulose) and most plenteous amino-polysaccharide in environment. Its recalcitrant structure contributes mechanical strength to the chitin-bearing organisms. Chitinolytic enzymes or chitinases are group of glycosyl hydrolases which collectively and ultimately breaks chitin to its building block N-acetylglucosamine. Chitinolytic enzymes are ubiquitous among most of the living taxa, starting from bacteria to human beings, where they play different imperative biological functions. In spite of its cosmopolitan distribution in nature, chitinase from microorganisms are extensively explored. Chitinase has engrossed worldwide colossal attention due to its widespread applicability in biocontrol, biomedical, waste management, and pharmaceutical sectors, and owing to these employments, there is a steady increment in the demand of chitinases in present scenario. Perusal of literature attested that among the reports on microbial chitinase, a fungus contributes a lion’s share. In fungi, chitinase plays multiple physiological roles including degradation of indigenous and exogenous chitin. Classical fermentation method in optimized condition is generally applied for the production of chitinase, whereas with the advent and advancement of genetic engineering, overproduction/overexpression of chitinase is now becoming a fascinated approach. In the present deliberation, biosynthesis of fungal chitinolytic enzymes, their classification, physiological role, potential applications, and future perspectives are outlined and highlighted.


Biocontrol Chitooligosaccharides Endochitinase Exochitinase Fungal chitinases N-acetylglucosamine Waste management 



The authors are grateful to the authority of Vidyasagar University and BIF Centre of the University for carrying out research in the relevant field. Corresponding author deeply acknowledged Department of Science and Technology, Govt. of India, for financial support as DST-INSPIRE fellowship. There are no conflicts of interest.


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© Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  • Suman Kumar Halder
    • 1
    Email author
  • Shilpee Pal
    • 1
  • Keshab Chandra Mondal
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Microbiology, Vidyasagar UniversityMidnaporeIndia

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