Designer cellulosomes for enhanced hydrolysis of cellulosic substrates

Yael Vazana, Sarah Moraïs, Yoav Barak, Raphael Lamed, Edward A. Bayer

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapterpeer-review

44 Scopus citations


During the past several years, major progress has been accomplished in the production of "designer cellulosomes," artificial enzymatic complexes that were demonstrated to efficiently degrade crystalline cellulose. This progress is part of a global attempt to promote biomass waste solutions and biofuel production. In designer cellulosomes, each enzyme is equipped with a dockerin module that interacts specifically with one of the cohesin modules of the chimeric scaffoldin. Artificial scaffoldins serve as docking backbones and contain a cellulose-specific carbohydrate-binding module that directs the enzymatic complex to the cellulosic substrate, and one or more cohesin modules from different natural cellulosomal species, each exhibiting a different specificity, that allows the specific incorporation of the desired matching dockerin-bearing enzymes. With natural cellulosomal components, the insertion of the enzymes in the scaffold would presumably be random, and we would not be able to control the contents of the resulting artificial cellulosome. There are an increasing number of papers describing the production of designer cellulosomes either in vitro, ex vivo, or in vivo. These types of studies are particularly intricate, and a number of such publications are less meaningful in the final analysis, as important controls are frequently excluded. In this chapter, we hope to give a complete overview of the methodologies essential for designing and examining cellulosome complexes.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationMethods in Enzymology
PublisherAcademic Press Inc.
Number of pages24
StatePublished - 1 Jan 2012
Externally publishedYes

Publication series

NameMethods in Enzymology
ISSN (Print)0076-6879
ISSN (Electronic)1557-7988


  • Carbohydrate-binding module (CBM)
  • Chimeric enzyme
  • Chimeric scaffoldin
  • Cohesin
  • Designer cellulosomes
  • Dockerin

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biochemistry
  • Molecular Biology


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