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Fructan degradation and hydrolytic activity in tuberous roots of Viguiera discolor Baker (Asteraceae), a herbaceous species from the cerrado

Author(s): Degasperi Maria I. | Itaya Nair M. | Buckeridge Marcos S. | Figueiredo-Ribeiro Rita De Cássia L.

Journal: Revista Brasileira de Botânica
ISSN 0100-8404

Volume: 26;
Issue: 1;
Start page: 11;
Date: 2003;
Original page

Keywords: Asteraceae | cerrado | fructan 1-exohydrolase | inulin

Fructans of the inulin type are the major reserve carbohydrates in tuberous roots of Viguiera discolor, a perennial herb native to the cerrado. Changes in molecular mass of the polymer, followed by releasing free fructose suggested that hydrolysis could be related to the sprouting of the buds after the dormant period, when aerial parts of the plant are naturally absent. Excision of aerial parts resulted in the increase of fructan 1-exohydrolase (1-FEH) activity in tuberous roots after sprouting. 1-FEH was partially purified from this material by binding to ConA-Sepharose and the highest activity was detected at pH 5.4 and between 20 and 40 °C. Values of Km for V. discolor inulin could not be determined since no saturation was observed up to 10%. The study of the kinetics of the 1-FEH activity showed that it does not follow Michaelis-Menten and apparently presents allosteric behaviour, as data fits in the Hill equation. The 1-FEH from V. discolor is a glycoprotein, more active on low molecular mass fructans than on high molecular mass inulin from the same species.
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