Lignocellulase activity and distribution within the alimentary canal were compared among 4 termite (Isoptera) genera representing 2 taxonomic families: Coptotermes and Reticulitermes in Rhinotermitidae; Macrotermes and Odontotermes in Termitidae. Activity of (β-glucosidase and xylanase was higher in Macrotermes barneyi Light than observed in 5 other termite species examined; thus, indicating that M. barney might be a prospective organism for discovery of novel lignocellulases. Xylanase activity was primarily restricted to the hindgut of Coptotermes formosanus Shiraki, Reticulitermes guangzhouensis Ping, and R. dichrous Ping (Family Rhinotermitidae); whereas, xylanase activity occurred in both the midgut and hindgut of M. barneyi, Odontotermes formosanus (Shiraki), and O. hainanensis (Light) (Family Termitidae). β-glucosidase activity was primarily detected in the salivary gland and foregut of O. formosanus and O. hainensis, but β-glucosidase activity was equally distributed in salivary glands, foregut, and midgut of M. barneyi.
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Vol. 47 • No. 2