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Table 1 Summary of reported structural changes in lignocellulosic substrates caused by swollenin preparations obtained through different strategies of protein expression and production

From: Functional characterization of the native swollenin from Trichoderma reesei: study of its possible role as C1 factor of enzymatic lignocellulose conversion

Native source/produced in/purification/aMm


Experimental setup; employed methods



T. reesei/S. cerevisiae/CS/~75 kDa

Mercerized cotton fibers

0.25 µgSwo/gsubstrate, 25 °C, 4 h; light microscopy

Local disruption of cotton fibers, no release of sugars


T. reesei/S. cerevisiae/CS/~75 kDa

Whatman No. 3 filter paper

5 mL CS/filter paper strip, room temperature, 15 min; paper strength test

Reduction of tensile strength and average peak load (15–20 %)


T. reesei/A. niger/AC/~80–95 kDa

Valonia sp. cell wall fragments

10 µgSwo/gsubstrate, 45 °C, 48 h; AFM, light microscopy

Partial disintegration to isolated fibers, no release of sugars


A. fumigatus/A. oryzae/AC/~85 kDa

Avicel PH-101, filter paper (603 cellulose thimbles)

0.8 µgSwo/mgAvicel, 8 µgSwo/mgfilter paper, 40 °C, 72 h; light microscopy, visual examination

Avicel PH-101 particle size reduction (~50 %), effect is pH- and temperature-dependent; complete disruption of filter paper, no release of sugars


T. reesei/K. lactis/IMAC/~100 kDa

Whatman No. 1 filter paper, α-cellulose, Avicel PH-101, sigmacell 101

20 µgSwo/mgsubstrate, 45 °C, 48 h; XRD, laser diffraction

Reduction of CrI (~10 up to 22 %) and particle size (up to ~30 %) was observed for all substrates except Sigmacell


T. reesei/K. lactis/IMAC/~100 kDa

Whatman No. 1 filter paper

20 µgSwo/mgsubstrate, 45 °C, 48 h; SEM, photography

Deagglomeration of filter paper (reduction of particle size and count); SEM showed an increased surface roughness; no swelling was observed


T. asperellum/E. coli/refolding, AC/~35–50 kDa

Avicel PH-101

5 µgSwo/mgsubstrate, 50 °C, 91 h; light microscopy

Partial disruption of Avicel PH-101 particles


T. pseudokoningii/A. niger/HIC/~75 kDa

Avicel PH-101, filter paper

5–20 µgSwo/mgAvicel, 0.5–2 µgSwo/mgfilter paper, 40 °C, 48–72 h; light microscopy, XRD

No effects were observed by applying light microscopy; CrI was increased (88–90 %)


T. reesei/T. reesei/IMAC, IE/n.a.

Mercerized cotton fibers

10 µgSwo/mgsubstrate, 50 °C, overnight; CBM adsorption assay, SEM

Available surface for CBMs was increased (~38 %); SEM showed a smoothed surface upon TrSwo1 treatment


T. reesei/E. coli and N. tabacum/CS/n.a.

Mercerized cotton fibers

0.2–2 µgSwo/mgsubstrate, 37 °C or 50 °C, 8 h; phase contrast microscopy

Fiber expansion, inner fiber structure was altered independent of the TrSwo1 source


P. oxalicum/T. reesei/precipitation, IMAC/~90 kDa

Avicel PH-101

4 µgSwo/mgsubstrate, 50 °C, 48 h; light microscopy, protein binding assay

Partial disruption of Avicel PH-101 particles; B max for cellulases was increased (~20 %)


T. reesei/T. reesei/IMAC, IE/n.a.

Dissolving pulp, various lignocellulosic pulps

50 µgSwo/mgsubstrate, 50 °C, overnight; high-resolution fiber quality analyzer

Fragmentation was observed to a low extent for dissolving pulp fibers but not for lignocellulosic pulps


Orpinomyces sp. strain C1A/E. coli/refolding, IMAC/~67 kDa

Cotton fibers

0.25–5 µgSwo/mgsubstrate, 39 °C, 12 h; ESEM, Congo red cotton assay

Average cotton fiber width was increased (~56 %); dye adsorption was increased (CAE ~0.4 for 5 µgSwo/mgsubstrate)


  1. aMm apparent molecular mass, CS enriched culture supernatant, AC affinity chromatography, IMAC immobilized metal adsorption chromatography (via His-tag), HIC hydrophobic interaction chromatography, IE ion exchange chromatography, n.a. not available