O'Malley group finds fungi enzymes capable of degrading plant biomass

Tuesday, June 6, 2017

As reported May 26, 2017 in Nature Microbiology, a team led by researchers at UCSB led by Professor Michelle O'Malley has found for the first time that early lineages of fungi can form complexes of enzymes capable of degrading plant biomass. This study identifies the proteins critical to fungal cellulosome assembly, characterizing the complex as evolutionarily chimeric — an independently evolved fungal complex co-opted catalytic activities from bacteria coexisting within the gut.

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