J Fungi (Basel). 2023 Aug 18;9(8):860. doi: 10.3390/jof9080860.
Plant biomass is one of the most abundant renewable carbon sources, which holds great potential for replacing current fossil-based production of fuels and chemicals. In nature, fungi can efficiently degrade plant polysaccharides by secreting a broad range of carbohydrate-active enzymes (CAZymes), such as cellulases, hemicellulases, and pectinases. Due to the crucial role of plant biomass-degrading (PBD) CAZymes in fungal growth and related biotechnology applications, investigation of their genomic diversity and transcriptional dynamics has attracted increasing attention. In this project, we systematically compared the genome content of PBD CAZymes in six taxonomically distant species, Aspergillus niger, Aspergillus nidulans, Penicillium subrubescens, Trichoderma reesei, Phanerochaete chrysosporium, and Dichomitus squalens, as well as their transcriptome profiles during growth on nine monosaccharides. Considerable genomic variation and remarkable transcriptomic diversity of CAZymes were identified, implying the preferred carbon source of these fungi and their different methods of transcription regulation. In addition, the specific carbon utilization ability inferred from genomics and transcriptomics was compared with fungal growth profiles on corresponding sugars, to improve our understanding of the conversion process. This study enhances our understanding of genomic and transcriptomic diversity of fungal plant polysaccharide-degrading enzymes and provides new insights into designing enzyme mixtures and metabolic engineering of fungi for related industrial applications.