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Aspergillus brasiliensis

Aspergillus brasiliensis is a member of the black aspergilli, as are the already sequenced A. niger, A. carbonarius, and A. aculeatus. It is also being used in industry, in particular for enzyme production. The reason we feel that sequencing more of this group is relevant is that we recently obtained data highlighting the differences between these species. All black aspergilli grow well on wheat bran, a crude plant biomass, but their protein (SDS-PAGE) and enzyme activity profiles are significantly different between these species. This indicates that they apply different strategies to degrade plant biomass and detailed analysis of these differences will enable us to design better industrial processes that involve plant biomass degradation. In addition, there are also significant differences in their ability to utilise monomeric carbon sources. For instance, A. brasiliensis is the only black aspergillus species that can grow from spores on D-galactose. The availability of these additional genomes would allow identification of novel enzymes and mechanisms.

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