Mechanistic understanding of the fermentative L-glutamic acid overproduction by Corynebacterium glutamicum through combined metabolic flux profiling and transmembrane transport characteristics

Theodora Tryfona, Mark T. Bustard

Research output: Contribution to journalLiterature review

Abstract

Since the 1950s when Micrococcus glutamicus later renamed Corynebacterium glutamicum was discovered, the production of amino acids by fermentative methods has become an important aspect of industrial microbiology. Numerous studies to understand and improve the metabolic conditions leading to amino acid overproduction have been carried out. Most amino acids are currently produced by use of mutants that contain combinations of auxotrophic and regulatory mutations. L-Glutamic acid is the amino acid produced in the greatest quantities (106 tonnes per year) and Corynebacteria are central to its industrial production. However, further improvements to strain performance are difficult to obtain by empirical optimization and a more rational approach is required. The use of metabolic flux analysis provides valuable information regarding bottlenecks in the formation of desired metabolites. Such techniques have found application in elucidating flux control, provided insight into metabolic network function and developed methods to amplify or redirect fluxes in engineered bioprocesses. Hence, branch points in biosynthesis, precursor supply in fuelling reactions and export of i metabolites can be manipulated, resulting in high glutamic acid overproduction by Corynebacterium glutamicum fermentations. In this review, in addition to reviewing the state of play in metabolic flux analysis for glutamate overproduction, the metabolic pathways involved in the production of L-glutamic acid, the mechanisms mediating its efflux and secretion as well as their manipulation to achieve higher glutamate production, are discussed. The link between metabolic flux and transmembrane transport of glutamic acid are also considered. © 2004 Society of Chemical Industry.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1321-1330
Number of pages10
JournalJournal of Chemical Technology and Biotechnology
Volume79
Issue number12
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Dec 2004

Keywords

  • Biosynthetic pathways
  • Corynebacterium glutamicum
  • L-glutamic acid
  • Metabolic flux analysis
  • Transport mechanisms

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