The effect of combined chemical and enzyme treatments on the saccharification and in vitro digestion rate of wheat straw



Wheat straw was pretreated with sodium hydroxide, ozone, and sulfur dioxide, and subsequently treated with four sources of cellulase, T. reesei, T. reesei, T. viride, A. niger, and Oxyporus sp. The effect of the combined chemical + enzyme treatments on the extent of saccharification and on the digestion rate by rumen microorganisms was studied. Cellulases were applied at an equal but low concentration (0.5 FPU/ml) on the pretreated straw. The combined treatments, SO2 + T. reesei cellulase nd SO2 + T. viride cellulase, produced the highest and significant levels of reducing sugars (RS), 577 and 597 mg RS/g straw organic matter. The highest enzyme efficiency, 44.7 mg RS/mg enzyme, was found with T. reesei cellulase when applied on SO2 pretreated straw. The in vitro organic matter digestibility was affected significantly only by the chemical pretreatments, whereas the effect of the cellulases was expressed mainly in increasing the fermentability of the hydrolyzed straw. The in vitro digestion pattern of the saccharified straw was found to be typical of a highly fermentable feed and comparable to a starchy mixture such as used in concentrate ruminant diets.