The Role and Application of α-amylase

1. The role of alpha amylase enzyme

According to statistics, amylase accounts for 25% of the enzyme preparation market and is a very important industrial enzyme. There are several types of amylases, namely α-amylase, β-amylase, saccharification enzyme, and isoamylase, among which α-amylase is mainly glucose when decomposing amylose, and a small amount of maltotriose and maltose. , when amylopectin is decomposed, in addition to maltose, glucose, and maltotriose, a-dextrin having an α-1,6-bond in the branch is also generated. In the processing of flour products, for example, adding fungal α-amylase to the steamed bread we often eat can enhance the reproductive capacity of yeast and shorten the fermentation time of bread dough.

The alpha amylases currently produced mainly include: fungal alpha amylase, medium temperature alpha amylase and high temperature alpha amylase. Among them, the fungal α-amylase is an endo-amylase, and the optimum temperature is about 55 °C, and it begins to inactivate when it exceeds 60 °C. It can rapidly hydrolyze the α-1,4 glucosidic bonds in the aqueous solution of gelatinized starch, amylose and amylopectin to produce soluble dextrin and a small amount of maltose and glucose; mesophilic α-amylase is produced by submerged fermentation of Bacillus subtilis strains , is an endo-amylase, the optimum temperature is 70~80℃; the high temperature resistant α-amylase Bacillus licheniformis is obtained by liquid fermentation, and the optimum temperature is 95~105℃.

2. Main application fields of alpha amylase enzyme

(1) Food processing

As a safe and efficient improver in the flour product industry, it can improve the quality of bread. Alpha amylase enzyme has liquefaction and saccharification functions and is often used as a sweetener in the beverage industry. In the cold drink, the viscosity of the cold drink is reduced, the fluidity is increased, and the taste of the high-starch cold drink is guaranteed. As a new type of liquefaction enzyme preparation, high temperature alpha amylase is widely used in the fermentation industry. Its thermal stability is determined by the thermal stability of the protein itself, so it is widely used in the alcohol and beer brewing industries.

(2) Feed industry

Adding exogenous α-amylase to the diet can help young animals digest and utilize starch, and its growth performance and feed conversion rate are very beneficial. Supplementation of live alpha-amylase-producing E. coli cultures to broiler diets can act as antibiotic growth promoters, improve gut morphology, and improve production performance.

(3) Washing industry

Because starch is cheap, easy to obtain, and easy to remove, it is used as a protective material to prevent yarn breakage in modern fiber manufacturing processes, and then treated with a-amylase to selectively remove starch pulp Without harming the yarn fiber, it can also degrade the starch into dextrin that is easily soluble in water, making it easy to wash off.

(4) Pharmaceutical industry

Since Aspergillus niger alpha amylase has acid resistance, it can be used to manufacture medicines that help digestion, and acid-resistant alpha amylase suitable for gastric acid environment can be developed for the preparation of digestive aids.

(5) Paper industry

Amylase is mainly used in the paper industry to improve the viscosity and concentration of paper coating starch. Paste is a good paper coating, which can improve the hardness and strength of the paper and enhance the rubability of the paper. The natural starch concentration is too high for paper sizing, so it can be adjusted by partial degradation of starch with alpha amylase enzymes.

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