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A Simple and Fast Kinetic Assay for the Determination of Fructan Exohydrolase Activity in Perennial Ryegrass (Lolium perenne L.)

Abstract : Despite the fact that fructans are the main constituent of water-soluble carbohydrates in forage grasses and cereal crops of temperate climates, little knowledge is available on the regulation of the enzymes involved in fructan metabolism. The analysis of enzyme activities involved in this process has been hampered by the low affinity of the fructan enzymes for sucrose and fructans used as fructosyl donor. Further, the analysis of fructan composition and enzyme activities is restricted to specialized labs with access to suited HPLG equipment and appropriate fructan standards. The degradation of fructan polymers with high degree of polymerization (DP) by fructan exohydrolases (FEHs) to fructosyloligomers is important to liberate energy in the form of fructan, but also under conditions where the generation of low DP polymers is required. Based on published protocols employing enzyme coupled endpoint reactions in single cuvettes, we developed a simple and fast kinetic 1-FEH assay. This assay can be performed in multi-well plate format using plate readers to determine the activity of 1-FEH against 1-kestotriose, resulting in a significant time reduction. Kinetic assays allow an optimal and more precise determination of enzyme activities compared to endpoint assays, and enable to check the quality of any reaction with respect to linearity of the assay. The enzyme coupled kinetic 1-FEH assay was validated in a case study showing the expected increase in 1-FEH activity during cold treatment. This assay is cost effective and could be performed by any lab with access to a plate reader suited for kinetic measurements and readings at 340 nm, and is highly suited to assess temporal changes and relative differences in 1-FEH activities. Thus, this enzyme coupled kinetic 1-FEH assay is of high importance both to the field of basic fructan research and plant breeding.
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Anna Gasperl, Annette Morvan-Bertrand, Marie-Pascale Prud’homme, Eric van der Graaff, Thomas Roitsch. A Simple and Fast Kinetic Assay for the Determination of Fructan Exohydrolase Activity in Perennial Ryegrass (Lolium perenne L.). Frontiers in Plant Science, Frontiers, 2015, 6, pp.9. ⟨10.3389/fpls.2015.01154⟩. ⟨hal-02183514⟩

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