SUMMARY: The resistance of to amphotericin B methyl ester increases rapidly as cultures enter the stationary phase of growth; organisms harvested after several days in the stationary phase may have a resistance two or three orders of magnitude greater than that of exponentially growing organisms. This resistance is decreased by incubation of the organisms with enzymes which attack components of the cell wall. Of the enzymes tested, (1 → 3)-β--glucanases are the most effective; incubation of 7 d batch cultures with exo-(1 → 3)-β--glucanase at a concentration of 10 μ enzyme protein (mg dry wt organisms) for 24 h at 37 °C and pH 6·5 reduces the resistance of the organisms to a value approximating to that of exponentially growing organisms. Resistance is also decreased by treatment with chitinase, lipase, trypsin, α-mannosidase and (1 → 6)-β--glucanases but, on a specific activity basis, none of these enzymes is as effective as (1 → 3)-β--glucanase. The action of (1 → 3)-β--glucanase is markedly enhanced by the addition during incubation of chitinase, trypsin or lipase.


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