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Analysis of the structural and functional diversity of enzymes belonging to the GH173 family: biological implications and biotechnological potential

Grant number: 22/09386-8
Support Opportunities:Scholarships in Brazil - Doctorate (Direct)
Effective date (Start): December 01, 2022
Effective date (End): August 31, 2027
Field of knowledge:Biological Sciences - Biochemistry - Enzymology
Principal Investigator:Mário Tyago Murakami
Grantee:Fabiane Stoffel
Host Institution: Centro Nacional de Pesquisa em Energia e Materiais (CNPEM). Ministério da Ciência, Tecnologia e Inovações (Brasil). Campinas , SP, Brazil


The breakdown and modification of carbohydrates represents one of the most important biocatalytic reactions in nature and is present in several technological processes such as in the beverage, food, biofuels industry, among many others. The omics studies of microbial communities have accelerated the discovery of new molecular strategies for the recognition and cleavage of carbohydrates, which has been reflected in the discovery of novel families of enzymes active on carbohydrates, also known as CAZymes. In a recent work by our group, using an integrative multi-omics approach, the capybara gut microbiome was explored, aiming to unravel the enzymatic strategies used by this rodent to degrade plant biomass. The investigation of the capybara microbiota revealed a rich repertoire of novel enzymatic strategies for the deconstruction of complex carbohydrates, which led to the discovery of a new family of glycosidic hydrolase, the GH173. To date, this family has not yet been structurally characterized and, therefore, the molecular bases for the mechanism of catalysis and substrate specificity are elusive. Thus, the present project aims to thoroughly explore the functional and structural diversity of this new GH173 family. The major goal is to contribute to a better overall understanding of this novel enzyme family, in relation to their functions, modes of action and substrate recognition, catalytic mechanisms and genomic contexts. After this biochemical and structural study, we expect to clarify the biological role of this novel family and also to evaluate the potential for biotechnological applications. (AU)

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