Mannan is part of the hemi-cellulose content of plant cell walls and is widely distributed in nature as part of the hemi-cellulose fraction of hardwoods and softwoods as palm kernel meal (PKM). PKM contains a moderate level of crude protein, fiber and amino acid profile. It is considered to be a moderate quality feed ingredient for ruminants but is not suitable for mono-gastric animals1.
The use of PKM for mono-gastric animals, such as poultry is limited because these animals lack the appropriate enzymes to hydrolyze the fiber. Therefore, mannanase supplementation into PKM will result in the degradation of the mannan component, thereby increasing its suitability for use in poultry rations.
Mannanase is an enzyme that degrades mannan, glucomannan and galactomannan to mannose, glucose and galactose, respectively. The main source of β-mannanase is microbes and it has been reported that β-mannanase is present in many bacterial species. One microorganism Bacillus Cereus has the ability of producing this enzyme is a bacterium found in the hindgut of termites2.
The production of enzymes is easier and faster by using microbial isolates found in the hindgut of termites rather than by producing large numbers of termites for enzyme extraction. Based on this observation, a new study was conducted to isolate, characterize and produce mannanase from the bacteria found in the hindgut of termites3.
For this purpose, bacteria were isolated by culturing on solid media. The mannanolytic index was then measured. Mannanase activity was measured by the dinitrosalicylic acid method, while the protein content was measured by the Bradford method3.
Isolate V9 was selected for the production of mannanase because isolate V9 was capable of producing mannanase at high quantities compared with other isolates. Selected isolates were characterized further to determine the optimal pH and temperature for the enzyme activity and to determine the stability of mannanase at the optimal pH and temperature.
Bacillus cereus isolated from hindgut of termites exhibits sufficiently high mannanase activity and can be considered for the production of enzymes. Mannanase from Bacillus cereus can be used to hydrolyze feed containing high mannan, such as palm kernel meal and coconut meal, to increase the quality of the feed. Therefore, in the future, a study needs to be conducted to test the quality of feed containing high mannan after the addition of mannanase produced by Bacillus cereus.
- Alimon, A.R., 2004. The nutritive value of palm kernel cake for animal feed. Palm Oil Dev., 40: 12-14.
- Hinzato, S., M. Muramatsu, T. Matsui and Y. Watanabe, 2005. Molecular phylogenetic diversity of the Bacterial community in the gut of the termite Coptotermes formosanus. Biotechnol. Biochem., 69: 1145-1155.
- Mairizal, Marlida, Y., Mirzah and Manin, F., 2018. Isolation and Characterization of Mannanase-producing Bacillus cereus Isolated from the Hindgut of Termites. J. Nutri., 17: 116-123.