Project Leader: Professor Dr Suraini Abd Aziz
Mr Mohamad Faizal Ibrahim
Professor Dr Mohd Ali Hassan
Dr Phang Lai Yee
Title: Crude cellulases cocktail by local isolates for lignocellulosic materials degradation
The research on cellulases revealed their biotechnological potential in various industries, including food, animal feed, biofuel, brewery, textile, pulp and paper, waste management, pharmaceutical, agriculture, as well as in research and development. The tremendous commercial potential of cellulases in a variety of applications remains the driving force for research in this area. In US the potential cellulase market has been estimated to be as high as US$400 million per year. This market scenario represents an increase of 33% in the total US industrial enzyme market with current market price is USD$ 90/kg depending on the enzyme activity and the production cost. In Malaysia, cellulases are commonly imported by Novozymes Malaysia Sdn Bhd and the market price is RM 500 per liter. The main problem in cellulase industry is the high cellulase production cost due to the expensive substrate used for cellulase production and purification process applied in the industry. Thus, a research on the production of crude cellulase cocktail from agriculture biomass has been conducted. Agriculture biomass is a cheap, abundant and sustainable. This material contains cellulose and hemicellulose that induce microorganism to produce cellulase. Our present research employed Trichoderma asperellum UPM1 and Aspergillus fumigatus UPM2 in which the cellulases produced by these two fungi were formulated to improve the cellulase activity. In overall, this invention might help to solve the expensive price of current commercial cellulase enzyme as it is produced from a cheap, sustainable and abundant biomass. The formulation of enzymes cocktail studied help to improve the degradation and thus has capability to compete with the current enzyme used in industry. Furthermore, utilization of biomass produced from agriculture industry would help them in managing their waste and benefit to their industry as well as generate extra profit.