Under otherwise identical fermentation conditions, the sugar source has been shown to have a marked effect on citric acid production by Aspergillus niger. Sucrose was the most favourable source, followed by glucose and fructose and then lactose. No citric acid was produced from galactose. Strong relationships were observed between citric acid production and the activities of certain enzymes in myccelial cell-free extracts prepared from fermentation samples. When sucrose, glucose, or fructose was the sugar source pyruvate carboxylase activity was high, but 2-oxoglutarate dehydrogenase activity was not detected. When galactose was the sugar source pyruvate carboxylase activity was low, but 2-oxoglutarate dehydrogenase activity was high. It is suggested that whereas glucose and fructose repress 2-oxoglutarate dehydrogenase, thereby causing accumulation of citric acid, galactose does not. The activity of aconitase showed a direct relationship to the citric acid production rate. Thus, the activity was highest when sucrose was the sugar source, and lowest when galactose was the source. It is suggested that when large amounts of citric acid are lost from the cell the activity of aconitase increases as a response to the diminished intracellular supply of its substrate.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Applied Microbiology and Biotechnology