Cellulose-binding domains have been isolated from various cellulases, and proteins, which lack hydrolytic activity. The hypothesis that a cellulose-binding domain can be used to alter surface and mechanical properties of paper was tested. Two cellulose-binding domains from Clostridium cellulovorans were fused to form a cellulose crosslinking protein (CCP). The recombinant bifunctional cellulose-binding protein was expressed in E. coli, applied by immersion onto Whatman cellulose filter paper, and its mechanical properties were tested. The purified protein improved the treated paper's mechanical properties (tensile strength, brittleness, Young's modulus and energy to break). In addition, cellulose crosslinking protein treatment was shown to transform filter paper into a more water-repellent paper. The binding of cellulose-binding domains to cellulose under a wide range of environmental conditions, without the need for chemical reactions, and its biodegradability make them attractive moieties for the design of a new class of paper-modification materials.
Bibliographical noteFunding Information:
1The Kennedy Leigh Center for Horticultural Research and The Otto Warburg Center for Agricultural Biotechnology, The Hebrew University of Jerusalem, P.O. Box 12, Rehovot 76100, Israel; 2Institute of Biochemistry, Food Science and Human Nutrition, the Faculty of Agricultural, Food and Environmental Quality Sciences, The Hebrew University of Jerusalem, P.O. Box 12, Rehovot 76100, Israel; 3CBD-Technologies Ltd., Tamar Science Park, P.O. Box 199, Rehovot 76100, Israel; *Author for correspondence (e-mail: Shoseyov@agri.huji.ac.il)
- Cellulose crosslinking protein
- Cellulose fibers
- Cellulose-binding domain
- Mechanical properties