Application of cross-linked carboxymethyl cellulose degradation by β-glucosidase and vaginal microbes to toxic shock syndrome

Michael Sierks, P. J. Reilly

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Eleven bacterial and two yeast strains, four of which were previously identified as having activity on a lightly cross-linked carboxymethyl cellulose (CLD-2) found in one type of superabsorbent tampon, were grown on a variety of substrates, most containing cellulosics. None produced detectable amounts of cellulases, but all elaborated β-glucosidase. None of these 13 strains nor 3 commercially obtained β-glucosidase preparations could hydrolyze CLD-2, although a commercial cellulase and two other bacterial preparations known to produce cellulases could. Based on these results, it appears that previous work suggesting that the degradation of CLD-2 by vaginal microbes and β-glucosidase is implicated in the production by Staphylococcus aureus of toxin causing toxic shock syndrome must be reevaluated.


ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biotechnology
  • Environmental Science(all)
  • Microbiology

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