Gene source screening as a metabolic engineering tool for flavonoid production

Conference Dates

July 14-18, 2019


Flavonoids are plant secondary metabolites with advantageous health benefits and great potential in the food industry. Current production techniques are facing limitations due to climate changes, small plantation sizes and long growth cycles. Metabolic engineering food-grade microorganisms can provide an alternative solution. However, the current production yield is limited by low enzymatic activities. Proper gene selection can be a solution to this problem. Gene source analysis for 4-coumarate:coenzyme A ligase (4CL) and chalcone synthase (CHS) was performed based on evolution and protein structures. The analysis identified several potential enzyme gene sources, which were expressed in Saccharomyces cerevisiae. The flavonoid production was quantified by HPLC with the aim to find gene sources producing the highest amount of flavonoids. Two new enzyme gene sources, 4CL from Medicago truncatula and CHS from Vitis vinifera had been found to provide the highest naringenin production yield. The amount of naringenin produced was 28-fold higher as compared to the reference strain expressing Arabidopsis thaliana. The results demonstrated that gene screening and the combination of enzymes from the correct gene source could greatly improve flavonoid production. For the future, this could help commercialize flavonoid production, which would result in natural food preservatives and additives.

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