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See detailCharacterization and Cloning of Chitin Deacetylases from Rhizopus Circinans
Gauthier, Carole ULg; Clerisse, Fabienne ULg; Dommes, Jacques ULg et al

in Protein Expression & Purification (2008), 59

Chitin deacetylase catalyzes hydrolysis of the acetamido groups of N-acetylglucosamine of chitin in fungal cell walls. Here a chitin deacetylase secreted by Rhizopus circinans was purified to homogeneity ... [more ▼]

Chitin deacetylase catalyzes hydrolysis of the acetamido groups of N-acetylglucosamine of chitin in fungal cell walls. Here a chitin deacetylase secreted by Rhizopus circinans was purified to homogeneity and partially characterized. The enzyme exhibits an apparent molecular weight of approximately 75kDa. At 37 degrees C it shows optimal activity at pH 5.5-6. Its pH stability and thermal stability are good. Mn(2+) and Mg(2+) slightly enhance the activity of the enzyme and Cu(2+) strongly inhibits it. An R. circinans cDNA library was constructed and screened with a homologous probe synthesized by RT-PCR or with synthetic primers derived from the N-terminal amino-acid sequence of the native purified chitin deacetylase. Three chitin deacetylase cDNAs (RC, D2, and I3/2) were isolated from the cDNA library and sequenced. These cDNAs exhibit features characteristic of chitin deacetylase sequences: the presence of a polysaccharide deacetylase domain, a metal-binding triad, the conserved catalytic residues, and high homology with various chitin deacetylase genes. The cDNAs were cloned in a Pichia pastoris expression system and produced as polyhistidine-tagged proteins. Only one recombinant enzyme (called RC) was active under the tested conditions. It was purified to homogeneity in a single step and further characterized. The protein showed an apparent molecular mass of approximately 75kDa and, like the native enzyme, showed optimal activity at pH 5.5-6 at 37 degrees C. It was strongly inhibited by Cu(2+). The isolation of several chitin deacetylase cDNAs from the same microorganism is discussed. [less ▲]

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See detailRole Of Surface Chemical Signals In Egg Cannibalism And Intraguild Predation In Ladybirds (Coleoptera : Coccinellidae)
Hemptinne, Jl.; Lognay, Georges ULg; Gauthier, Carole ULg et al

in Chemoecology (2000), 10(3), 123-128

The eggs of some ladybirds are known to be toxic to intraguild ladybird predators. However, this defence is of little value if the eggs are killed before their toxicity becomes apparent. The results ... [more ▼]

The eggs of some ladybirds are known to be toxic to intraguild ladybird predators. However, this defence is of little value if the eggs are killed before their toxicity becomes apparent. The results presented in this paper indicate that chemicals on the surface of the eggs of two species of ladybirds signal the relative risk of cannibalism and intraguild predation. In Adalia bipunctata and Coccinella septempunctata, 87% of the chemicals are alkanes. Each species of ladybird is less reluctant to eat their own eggs than those of the other species. This asymmetry is to be expected because there is a greater risk to ladybirds from intraguild predation than cannibalism. Similar alkanes to those on the surface of the eggs of A. bipunctata are present in tracks left by larvae and on the elytra of the adults of this species. Those in the larval tracks deter females from ovipositing in patches of prey already being attacked by their larvae and those on the elytra are used in mate recognition. That different context dependent messages could be signalled by similar chemicals is an example of semiochemical parsimony. [less ▲]

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