Journal of Applied Microbiology, Vol.97, No.5, 942-949, 2004
Purification and characterization of a lipopeptide produced by Bacillus thuringiensis CMB26
Aims: To isolate an antagonist for use in the biological control of phytopathogenic fungi including Colletotrichum gloeosporioides, then to purify and characterize the biocontrol agent produced by the antagonist. Methods and Results: Bacteria that exhibited antifungal activity against the causative agent pepper anthracnose were isolated from soil, with Bacillus thuringiensis CMB26 showing the strongest activity. A lipopeptide produced by B. thuringiensis CMB26 was precipitated by adjusting the pH 2 with 3 n HCl and extracted using chloroform/methanol (2 : 1, v/v) and reversed-phase HPLC. The molecular weight was estimated as 1447 Da by MALDI-TOF mass spectrometry. Scanning electron and optical microscopies showed that the lipopeptide has activity against Escherichia coli O157:ac88, larvae of the cabbage white butterfly (Pieris rapae crucivora) and phytopathogenic fungi. The lipopeptide had cyclic structure and the amino acid composition was l-Glu, d-Orn, l-Tyr, d-allo-Thr, d-Ala, d-Val, l-Pro, and l-Ile in a molar ratio of 3 : 1 : 2 : 1 : 1 : 2 : 1 : 1. The purified lipopeptide showed the same amino acid composition as fengycin, but differed slightly in fatty acid composition, in which the double bond was at carbons 13-14 (m/z 303, 316) and there was no methyl group. Conclusion: A lipopeptide was purified and characterized from B. thuringiensis CMB26 and found to be similar to the lipopeptide fengycin. This lipopeptide can function as a biocontrol agent, and exhibits fungicidal, bactericidal, and insecticidal activity. Significance and Impact of the Study: Compared with surfactin and iturin, the lipopeptide from B. thuringiensis CMB26 showed stronger antifungal activity against phytopathogenic fungi. This lipopeptide is a candidate for the biocontrol of pathogens in agriculture.