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Enzyme Research
Volume 2012, Article ID 793708, 7 pages
Research Article

Correlation between Agar Plate Screening and Solid-State Fermentation for the Prediction of Cellulase Production by Trichoderma Strains

1Embrapa Instrumentação, Laboratório de Agroenergia, Caixa Postal 741, 13560-970 São Carlos, SP, Brazil
2Programa de Pós-graduação em Biotecnologia, Universidade Federal de São Carlos, 13565-905 São Carlos, SP, Brazil
3Programa de Pós-graduação em Ciência e Tecnologia de Alimentos, Instituto Federal de Educação, Ciência e Tecnologia do Rio de Janeiro, Rua Senador Furtado 121, Maracanã, 20270-021 Rio de Janeiro, RJ, Brazil

Received 30 August 2012; Revised 31 October 2012; Accepted 31 October 2012

Academic Editor: Jose Miguel Palomo

Copyright © 2012 Camila Florencio et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


The viability of converting biomass into biofuels and chemicals still requires further development towards the reduction of the enzyme production costs. Thus, there is a growing demand for the development of efficient procedures for selection of cellulase-producing microorganisms. This work correlates qualitative screening using agar plate assays with quantitative measurements of cellulase production during cultivation under solid-state fermentation (SSF). The initial screening step consisted of observation of the growth of 78 preselected strains of the genus Trichoderma on plates, using microcrystalline cellulose as carbon source. The 49 strains that were able to grow on this substrate were then subjected to a second screening step using the Congo red test. From this test it was possible to select 10 strains that presented the highest enzymatic indices (EI), with values ranging from 1.51 to 1.90. SSF cultivations using sugarcane bagasse and wheat bran as substrates were performed using selected strains. The CG 104NH strain presented the highest EGase activity (25.93 UI·g−1). The EI results obtained in the screening procedure using plates were compared with cellulase production under SSF. A correlation coefficient ( ) of 0.977 was obtained between the Congo red test and SSF, demonstrating that the two methodologies were in good agreement.