Isolation and expression of the xynB gene and its product, XynB, a consistent component of the Clostridium cellulovorans cellulosome

Sung Ok Han, Hideaki Yukawa, Masayuki Inui, Roy H. Doi

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27 Citations (Scopus)


The nucleotide sequence of the Clostridium cellulovorans xynB gene, which encodes the XynB xylanase, consists of 1,821 bp and encodes a protein of 607 amino acids with a molecular weight of 65,976. XynB contains a typical N-terminal signal peptide of 29 amino acid residues, followed by a 147-amino-acid sequence that is homologous to the family 4-9 (subfamily 9 in family 4) carbohydrate-binding domain. Downstream of this domain is a family 10 catalytic domain of glycosyl hydrolase. The C terminus separated from the catalytic domain by a short linker sequence contains a dockerin domain responsible for cellulosome assembly. The XynB sequence from mass spectrometry and N-terminal amino acid sequence analyses agreed with that deduced from the nucleotide sequence. XynB was highly active toward xylan, but not active toward carboxymethyl cellulose. The enzyme was optimally active at 40°C and pH 5.0. Northern hybridizations revealed that xynB is transcribed as a monocistronic 1.9-kb mRNA. RNA ligase-mediated rapid amplification of 5′ cDNA ends by PCR (RLM-5′RACE PCR) analysis of C. cellulovorans RNA identified a single transcriptional start site of xynB located 47 bp upstream from the first nucleotide of the translation initiation codon. Alignment of the xynB promoter region provided evidence for highly conserved sequences that exhibited strong similarity to the σA consensus promoter sequences of gram-positive bacteria. Expression of xynB mRNA increased from early to middle exponential phase and decreased during the early stationary phase when the cells were grown on cellobiose. No alternative promoter was observed by RLM-5′RACE PCR and reverse transcriptase PCR analyses during expression. The analysis of the products from xylan hydrolysis by thin-layer chromatography indicated its endoxylanase activity. The results suggest that XynB is a consistent and major cellulosomal enzyme during growth on cellulose or xylan.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)8347-8355
Number of pages9
JournalJournal of Bacteriology
Issue number24
Publication statusPublished - 2004 Dec
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Microbiology
  • Molecular Biology


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