Inhibition of the Peroxygenase Lytic Polysaccharide Monooxygenase by Carboxylic Acids and Amino Acids

Erik Breslmayr, Peter Poliak, Alen Požgajčić, Roman Schindler, Daniel Kracher*, Chris Oostenbrink, Roland Ludwig

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Lytic polysaccharide monooxygenases (LPMOs) are widely distributed in fungi, and catalyze the oxidative degradation of polysaccharides such as cellulose. Despite their name, LPMOs possess a dominant peroxygenase activity that is reflected in high turnover numbers but also causes deactivation. We report on the influence of small molecules and ions on the activity and stability of LPMO during catalysis. Turbidimetric and photometric assays were used to identify LPMO inhibitors and measure their inhibitory effect. Selected inhibitors were employed to study LPMO activity and stability during cellulose depolymerization by HPLC and turbidimetry. It was found that the fungal metabolic products oxalic acid and citric acid strongly reduce LPMO activity, but also protect the enzyme from deactivation. QM calculations showed that the copper atom in the catalytic site could be ligated by bi-or tridentate chelating compounds, which replace two water molecules. MD simulations and QM calculations show that the most likely inhibition pattern is the competition between the inhibitor and reducing agent in the oxidized Cu(II) state. A correlation between the complexation energy and the IC 50 values demonstrates that small, bidentate molecules interact strongest with the catalytic site copper and could be used by the fungus as physiological effectors to regulate LPMO activity.

Original languageEnglish
Article number1096
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - Jun 2022


  • activity
  • density functional theory
  • effector
  • inhibitor
  • lytic polysaccharide
  • molecular dynamics simulations
  • monooxygenase
  • peroxygenase
  • photometry
  • quantum mechanical calculations
  • turbidimetry

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Molecular Biology
  • Biochemistry
  • Physiology
  • Clinical Biochemistry
  • Cell Biology


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