Improved production of β-carotene in light-powered Escherichia coli by co-expression of Gloeobacter rhodopsin expression

Chao Yu Lee, Kai Wen Chen, Chih Lu Chiang, Hsuan Yu Kao, Hao Cheng Yu, Hsiao Ching Lee, Wen Liang Chen*


研究成果: Article同行評審


Background: Providing sufficient and usable energy for the cell factory has long been a heated issue in biosynthesis as solar energy has never been rooted out from the strategy for improvement, and turning Escherichia coli (E. coli) into a phototrophic host has multiple captivating qualities for biosynthesis. In this study, β-carotene was a stable compound for production in E. coli with the expression of four enzymes (CrtE, CrtB, CrtI, CrtY) for production due to its light-harvesting feature as an antenna pigment and as an antioxidant and important precursor for human health. The expression of Gloeobacter rhodopsin (GR) in microbial organisms was proved to have potential for application. Results: The expression of fusion protein, GR-GFP, in E. coli showed visible GFP signal under fluorescent microscopy, and its in vivo proton pumping activity signal can be detected in induced photocurrent by electrodes on the chip under intervals of illumination. To assess the phototrophic synthesis ability of the host strain compared to wild-type and vector control strain in chemostat batch with illumination, the expression of red fluorescent protein (RFP) as a target protein showed its yield improvement in protein assay and also reflected its early dominance in RFP fluorescence signal during the incubation, whereas the synthesis of β-carotene also showed yield increase by 1.36-fold and 2.32-fold compared with its wildtype and vector control strain. To investigate the effect of GR-GFP on E. coli, the growth of the host showed early rise into the exponential phase compared to the vector control strain and glucose turnover rate was elevated in increased glucose intake rate and upregulation of ATP-related genes in glycolysis (PtsG, Pgk, Pyk). Conclusion: We reported the first-time potential application of GR in the form of fusion protein GR-GFP. Expression of GR-GFP in E. coli improved the production of β-carotene and RFP. Our work provides a strain of E. coli harboring phototrophic metabolism, thus paving path to a more sustainable and scalable production of biosynthesis.

期刊Microbial Cell Factories
出版狀態Published - 12月 2023


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