Production of native-starch-degrading enzymes by a Bacillus firmus/lentus strain

Dirk-Jan Wijbenga, Gerrit Beldman, Anko Veen, Doede Binnema

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A bacterium belonging to the Bacillus firmus/lentus-complex and capable of growth on native potato starch was isolated from sludge of a pilot plant unit for potato-starch production. Utilization of a crude enzyme preparation obtained from the culture fluid after growth of the microorganism on native starch, resulted in complete degradation of native starch granules from potato, maize and wheat at a temperature of 37°C. Glucose was found as a major product. Production of maltose, maltotriose and maltotetraose was also observed. Native-starch-degrading activity (NSDA) could be selectively adsorbed on potato-starch granules, whereas soluble-starch-degrading activity (SSDA) remained mainly in solution. The use of such a starch-adsorbed enzyme preparation on native starch resulted in a completely changed product pattern. An increase in oligosaccharides concomitant with less glucose formation was observed. An increased conversion of soluble starch to maltopentaose was possible with this starch-adsorbed enzyme preparation. It is concluded that NSDA comes from α-amylase(s) and SSDA from glucoamylase(s) and/or α-glucosidase(s). Cultivation of B. firmus/lentus on glucose, maltose, or soluble starch resulted in substantially smaller quantities of (native) starch-degrading activity.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)180-184
JournalApplied Microbiology and Biotechnology
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 1 May 1991


  • starch


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