A novel strategy for cell factory design applied to adipic acid production - combining synthetic pathway and electrofermentation

The proposed project fits in the frame of contributing to the shift from oil-based economy to bio-based economy. Industrial biotechnology processes have been developed towards use of biomass as raw material and it is now time to build on the advances towards the biosynthesis of a wider range of chemicals. The project aims at generating a genetically engineered strain of the bacterium Corynebacterium glutamicum – an established industrial “work horse” for industrial biotechnology – able to synthesize adipic acid, which is one of the chemicals currently derived from fossil resources with high market demand. Thorough study of public C. glutamicum genome scale metabolic models will build the basis for pin-pointing the best metabolic engineering strategy, that will rely on the introduction of known genes from other microbes. The main novelty of the proposed process is the pioneering combination of genetic engineering with an electrofermentation process, aiming at bypassing the classical hurdles of metabolic engineering; the generation of unbalanced cellular redox equilibrium. The project will contribute to fundamental research on the physiology and redox balance of the developed C. glutamicum strain and on the use of this strain under novel bioprocess conditions. The fundamental knowledge gained will be of importantance also for existing “traditional” microbial cell factories, whose efficiency could be improved by applying the principles disclosed in the proposed research.

Start date 01/01/2017
End date 31/12/2021

Published: Thu 19 Jul 2018.