23 Nov Enzymatic screening of filamentous fungi using droplet microfluidics
“Fungal cell-wall-degrading enzymes have great utility in the agricultural and food industries. These cell-wall-degrading enzymes are known to have functions that can help defend against pathogenic organisms. The existing methods used to discover these enzymes are not well adapted to fungi culture and morphology, which prevents the proper evaluation of these enzymes. We report the first droplet-based microfluidic method capable of long-term incubation and low-voltage conditions to sort filamentous fungi inside nanoliter-sized droplets. The new method was characterized and validated in solid-phase media based on colloidal chitin such that the incubation of single spores in droplets was possible over multiple days (2–4 days) and could be sorted without droplet breakage. With long-term culture, we examined the activity of cell-wall-degrading enzymes produced by fungi during solid-state droplet fermentation using three highly sensitive fluorescein-based substrates. We also used the low-voltage droplet sorter to select clones with highly active cell-wall-degrading enzymes, such as chitinases, β-glucanases, and β-N-acetylgalactosaminidases, from a filamentous fungi droplet library that had been incubated for >4 days. The new system is portable, affordable for any laboratory, and user-friendly compared to classical droplet-based microfluidic systems. We propose that this system will be useful for the growing number of scientists interested in fungal microbiology who are seeking high-throughput methods to incubate and sort a large library of fungal cells.”
Figures and the abstract are reproduced from Samlali, K., Alves, C.L., Jezernik, M. et al. Droplet digital microfluidic system for screening filamentous fungi based on enzymatic activity. Microsyst Nanoeng 8, 123 (2022). https://doi.org/10.1038/s41378-022-00456-1 under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.
Read the original article: Droplet digital microfluidic system for screening filamentous fungi based on enzymatic activity