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Chitinase, chitosanase, and antifungal activities from thermophilic streptomycetes isolated from compost

González-Franco AC1, L Robles-Hernández1, JL Strap2

1 Facultad de Ciencias Agrotecnológicas, Universidad Autónoma de Chihuahua, Ciudad Universitaria S/N Campus 1, Chihuahua, Chih., 31310, México.
2 Faculty of Science, University of Ontario Institute of Technology, Oshawa, Ontario, L1H 7K4, Canada.

Address correspondence to: AC González-Franco; Phone 52 (614)-439-1844; e-mail:

Phyton-International Journal of Experimental Botany 2017, 86(all), 14-27.


The Streptomyces genus comprises a large and diverse group of bacteria, many of which are commercially exploited for the production of antibiotics and lytic enzymes. The thermophilic species are less studied than the predominant mesophilic species. However, the first ones are a potential source of thermostable bioactive products and enzymes with novel properties. In this study, two selected thermophilic streptomycetes were identified and their chitinolytic activities were evaluated. The identification of these two isolates was performed by microscopic morphology, partial 16S rDNA sequences, and its phylogenetic analysis. To study the chitinolytic activities of these isolates, the effects of colloidal chitin (CC) and fungal cell walls (FCW) on the chitinase activities and chitinase and chitosanase isoform patterns were determined. Additionally, in vitro confrontations against chitinolytic phytopathogenic fungi were performed at 45 °C and 65 °C. Both isolates (AC4 y AC7) were identified as members of the streptomycete thermophilic clade. The highest chitinolytic activities were observed in the combinations 0.1% FCW/0.1% CC and 0.1% FCW/0.3% CC with maximum values of 0.7 U/μg and 0.45 U/μg, respectively for the AC4 strain, and with values of 0.48 U/μg in both treatments for the AC7 strain. The electrophoretic profiles of chitinase and chitosanase activity showed not only differences in bands intensity, but also few new bands were observed. Both isolates inhibited the growth of Rhizoctonia solani and Fusarium oxysporum. The present study shows that thermophilic streptomycetes have potential bioactivities that might be exploited in horticulture.


Cite This Article

AC, G., Robles-Hernández, L., Strap, J. (2017). Chitinase, chitosanase, and antifungal activities from thermophilic streptomycetes isolated from compost. Phyton-International Journal of Experimental Botany, 86(all), 14–27.

This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License , which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.
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