Elimination of glycerol production in anaerobic cultures of a Saccharomyces cerevisiae strain engineered to use acetic acid as an electron acceptor.
ABSTRACT: In anaerobic cultures of wild-type Saccharomyces cerevisiae, glycerol production is essential to reoxidize NADH produced in biosynthetic processes. Consequently, glycerol is a major by-product during anaerobic production of ethanol by S. cerevisiae, the single largest fermentation process in industrial biotechnology. The present study investigates the possibility of completely eliminating glycerol production by engineering S. cerevisiae such that it can reoxidize NADH by the reduction of acetic acid to ethanol via NADH-dependent reactions. Acetic acid is available at significant amounts in lignocellulosic hydrolysates of agricultural residues. Consistent with earlier studies, deletion of the two genes encoding NAD-dependent glycerol-3-phosphate dehydrogenase (GPD1 and GPD2) led to elimination of glycerol production and an inability to grow anaerobically. However, when the E. coli mhpF gene, encoding the acetylating NAD-dependent acetaldehyde dehydrogenase (EC 22.214.171.124; acetaldehyde+NAD++coenzyme A<-->acetyl coenzyme A+NADH+H+), was expressed in the gpd1Delta gpd2Delta strain, anaerobic growth was restored by supplementation with 2.0 g liter(-1) acetic acid. The stoichiometry of acetate consumption and growth was consistent with the complete replacement of glycerol formation by acetate reduction to ethanol as the mechanism for NADH reoxidation. This study provides a proof of principle for the potential of this metabolic engineering strategy to improve ethanol yields, eliminate glycerol production, and partially convert acetate, which is a well-known inhibitor of yeast performance in lignocellulosic hydrolysates, to ethanol. Further research should address the kinetic aspects of acetate reduction and the effect of the elimination of glycerol production on cellular robustness (e.g., osmotolerance).
Project description:Acetic acid, an inhibitor of sugar fermentation by yeast, is invariably present in lignocellulosic hydrolysates which are used or considered as feedstocks for yeast-based bioethanol production. Saccharomyces cerevisiae strains have been constructed, in which anaerobic reduction of acetic acid to ethanol replaces glycerol formation as a mechanism for reoxidizing NADH formed in biosynthesis. An increase in the amount of acetate that can be reduced to ethanol should further decrease acetic acid concentrations and enable higher ethanol yields in industrial processes based on lignocellulosic feedstocks. The stoichiometric requirement of acetate reduction for NADH implies that increased generation of NADH in cytosolic biosynthetic reactions should enhance acetate consumption.Replacement of the native NADP(+)-dependent 6-phosphogluconate dehydrogenase in S. cerevisiae by a prokaryotic NAD(+)-dependent enzyme resulted in increased cytosolic NADH formation, as demonstrated by a ca. 15% increase in the glycerol yield on glucose in anaerobic cultures. Additional deletion of ALD6, which encodes an NADP(+)-dependent acetaldehyde dehydrogenase, led to a 39% increase in the glycerol yield compared to a non-engineered strain. Subsequent replacement of glycerol formation by an acetate reduction pathway resulted in a 44% increase of acetate consumption per amount of biomass formed, as compared to an engineered, acetate-reducing strain that expressed the native 6-phosphogluconate dehydrogenase and ALD6. Compared to a non-acetate reducing reference strain under the same conditions, this resulted in a ca. 13% increase in the ethanol yield on glucose.The combination of NAD(+)-dependent 6-phosphogluconate dehydrogenase expression and deletion of ALD6 resulted in a marked increase in the amount of acetate that was consumed in these proof-of-principle experiments, and this concept is ready for further testing in industrial strains as well as in hydrolysates. Altering the cofactor specificity of the oxidative branch of the pentose-phosphate pathway in S. cerevisiae can also be used to increase glycerol production in wine fermentation and to improve NADH generation and/or generation of precursors derived from the pentose-phosphate pathway in other industrial applications of this yeast.
Project description:Saccharomyces cerevisiae has recently been engineered to use acetate, a primary inhibitor in lignocellulosic hydrolysates, as a cosubstrate during anaerobic ethanolic fermentation. However, the original metabolic pathway devised to convert acetate to ethanol uses NADH-specific acetylating acetaldehyde dehydrogenase and alcohol dehydrogenase and quickly becomes constrained by limited NADH availability, even when glycerol formation is abolished. We present alcohol dehydrogenase as a novel target for anaerobic redox engineering of S. cerevisiae. Introduction of an NADPH-specific alcohol dehydrogenase (NADPH-ADH) not only reduces the NADH demand of the acetate-to-ethanol pathway but also allows the cell to effectively exchange NADPH for NADH during sugar fermentation. Unlike NADH, NADPH can be freely generated under anoxic conditions, via the oxidative pentose phosphate pathway. We show that an industrial bioethanol strain engineered with the original pathway (expressing acetylating acetaldehyde dehydrogenase from Bifidobacterium adolescentis and with deletions of glycerol-3-phosphate dehydrogenase genes GPD1 and GPD2) consumed 1.9 g liter(-1) acetate during fermentation of 114 g liter(-1) glucose. Combined with a decrease in glycerol production from 4.0 to 0.1 g liter(-1), this increased the ethanol yield by 4% over that for the wild type. We provide evidence that acetate consumption in this strain is indeed limited by NADH availability. By introducing an NADPH-ADH from Entamoeba histolytica and with overexpression of ACS2 and ZWF1, we increased acetate consumption to 5.3 g liter(-1) and raised the ethanol yield to 7% above the wild-type level.
Project description:The fermentative metabolism of Escherichia coli was reengineered to efficiently convert glycerol to succinate under anaerobic conditions without the use of foreign genes. Formate and ethanol were the dominant fermentation products from glycerol in wild-type Escherichia coli ATCC 8739, followed by succinate and acetate. Inactivation of pyruvate formate-lyase (pflB) in the wild-type strain eliminated the production of formate and ethanol and reduced the production of acetate. However, this deletion slowed growth and decreased cell yields due to either insufficient energy production or insufficient levels of electron acceptors. Reversing the direction of the gluconeogenic phosphoenolpyruvate carboxykinase reaction offered an approach to solve both problems, conserving energy as an additional ATP and increasing the pool of electron acceptors (fumarate and malate). Recruiting this enzyme through a promoter mutation (pck*) to increase expression also increased the rate of growth, cell yield, and succinate production. Presumably, the high NADH/NAD(+) ratio served to establish the direction of carbon flow. Additional mutations were also beneficial. Glycerol dehydrogenase and the phosphotransferase-dependent dihydroxyacetone kinase are regarded as the primary route for glycerol metabolism under anaerobic conditions. However, this is not true for succinate production by engineered strains. Deletion of the ptsI gene or any other gene essential for the phosphotranferase system was found to increase succinate yield. Deletion of pflB in this background provided a further increase in the succinate yield. Together, these three core mutations (pck*, ptsI, and pflB) effectively redirected carbon flow from glycerol to succinate at 80% of the maximum theoretical yield during anaerobic fermentation in mineral salts medium.
Project description:Anaerobic fermentation using lignocellulosic hydrolysates as co-substrates is an economically attractive method to enhance 1,3-propanediol (1,3-PD) production by increasing the conversion yield from glycerol. Lignocellulosic hydrolysates contain the mixed sugars that are primarily glucose, xylose, and arabinose. Therefore, these three individual sugars were used, separately, as co-substrates with glycerol, in 1,3-PD production by a Clostridium diolis strain DSM 15410, resulting in an 18%-28% increase in the 1,3-PD yield. Co-fermentation of the mixed sugars and glycerol obtained a higher intracellular NADH/NAD(+) ratio and increased the 1,3-PD yield by 22% relative to fermentation of glycerol alone. Thereafter, two kinds of lignocellulosic hydrolysates, corn stover hydrolysate and corncob molasses, were individually co-fermented with glycerol. The maximum 1,3-PD yield from glycerol reached 0.85 mol/mol. Fed-batch co-fermentation was also performed, improving the 1,3-PD yield (from 0.62 mol/mol to 0.82 mol/mol). These results demonstrate that the co-fermentation strategy is an efficient and economical way to produce 1,3-PD from glycerol.
Project description:Glycerol, whose formation contributes to cellular redox balancing and osmoregulation in Saccharomyces cerevisiae, is an important by-product of yeast-based bioethanol production. Replacing the glycerol pathway by an engineered pathway for NAD+-dependent acetate reduction has been shown to improve ethanol yields and contribute to detoxification of acetate-containing media. However, the osmosensitivity of glycerol non-producing strains limits their applicability in high-osmolarity industrial processes. This study explores engineering strategies for minimizing glycerol production by acetate-reducing strains, while retaining osmotolerance.GPD2 encodes one of two S. cerevisiae isoenzymes of NAD+-dependent glycerol-3-phosphate dehydrogenase (G3PDH). Its deletion in an acetate-reducing strain yielded a fourfold lower glycerol production in anaerobic, low-osmolarity cultures but hardly affected glycerol production at high osmolarity. Replacement of both native G3PDHs by an archaeal NADP+-preferring enzyme, combined with deletion of ALD6, yielded an acetate-reducing strain the phenotype of which resembled that of a glycerol-negative gpd1? gpd2? strain in low-osmolarity cultures. This strain grew anaerobically at high osmolarity (1 mol L-1 glucose), while consuming acetate and producing virtually no extracellular glycerol. Its ethanol yield in high-osmolarity cultures was 13% higher than that of an acetate-reducing strain expressing the native glycerol pathway.Deletion of GPD2 provides an attractive strategy for improving product yields of acetate-reducing S. cerevisiae strains in low, but not in high-osmolarity media. Replacement of the native yeast G3PDHs by a heterologous NADP+-preferring enzyme, combined with deletion of ALD6, virtually eliminated glycerol production in high-osmolarity cultures while enabling efficient reduction of acetate to ethanol. After further optimization of growth kinetics, this strategy for uncoupling the roles of glycerol formation in redox homeostasis and osmotolerance can be applicable for improving performance of industrial strains in high-gravity acetate-containing processes.
Project description:BACKGROUND:Redox-cofactor balancing constrains product yields in anaerobic fermentation processes. This challenge is exemplified by the formation of glycerol as major by-product in yeast-based bioethanol production, which is a direct consequence of the need to reoxidize excess NADH and causes a loss of conversion efficiency. Enabling the use of CO2 as electron acceptor for NADH oxidation in heterotrophic microorganisms would increase product yields in industrial biotechnology. RESULTS:A hitherto unexplored strategy to address this redox challenge is the functional expression in yeast of enzymes from autotrophs, thereby enabling the use of CO2 as electron acceptor for NADH reoxidation. Functional expression of the Calvin cycle enzymes phosphoribulokinase (PRK) and ribulose-1,5-bisphosphate carboxylase (Rubisco) in Saccharomyces cerevisiae led to a 90% reduction of the by-product glycerol and a 10% increase in ethanol production in sugar-limited chemostat cultures on a mixture of glucose and galactose. Co-expression of the Escherichia coli chaperones GroEL and GroES was key to successful expression of CbbM, a form-II Rubisco from the chemolithoautotrophic bacterium Thiobacillus denitrificans in yeast. CONCLUSIONS:Our results demonstrate functional expression of Rubisco in a heterotrophic eukaryote and demonstrate how incorporation of CO2 as a co-substrate in metabolic engineering of heterotrophic industrial microorganisms can be used to improve product yields. Rapid advances in molecular biology should allow for rapid insertion of this 4-gene expression cassette in industrial yeast strains to improve production, not only of 1st and 2nd generation ethanol production, but also of other renewable fuels or chemicals.
Project description:BACKGROUND:Water-forming NADH oxidase can oxidize cytosolic NADH to NAD(+), thus relieving cytosolic NADH accumulation in Saccharomyces cerevisiae. Previous studies of the enzyme were conducted under aerobic conditions, as O2 is the recognized electron acceptor of the enzyme. In order to extend its use in industrial production and to study its effect on anaerobes, the effects of overexpression of this oxidase in S. cerevisiae BY4741 and Clostridium acetobutylicum 428 (Cac-428) under anaerobic conditions were evaluated. RESULTS:Glucose was exhausted in the NADH oxidase-overexpressing S. cerevisiae strain (Sce-NOX) culture after 26 h, while 43.51 ± 2.18 g/L residual glucose was left in the control strain (Sce-CON) culture at this time point. After 30 h of fermentation, the concentration of ethanol produced by Sce-NOX reached 36.28 ± 1.81 g/L, an increase of 56.38 % as compared to Sce-CON (23.20 ± 1.16 g/L), while the byproduct glycerol was remarkably decreased in the culture of Sce-NOX. In the case of the C. acetobutylicum strain (Cac-NOX) overexpressing NADH oxidase, glucose consumption, cell growth rate, and the production of acetone-butanol-ethanol (ABE) all decreased, while the concentrations of acetic acid and butyric acid increased as compared to the control strain (Cac-CON). During fermentation of Cac-CON and Cac-NOX in 100-mL screw-capped bottles, the concentrations of ABE increased with increasing headspace. Additionally, several alternative electron acceptors in C. acetobutylicum fermentation were tested. Nitroblue tetrazolium and 2,6-dichloroindophenol were lethiferous to both Cac-CON and Cac-NOX. Methylene blue could relieve the effect caused by the overexpression of the NADH oxidase on the metabolic network of C. acetobutylicum strains, while cytochrome c aggravated the effect. CONCLUSIONS:The water-forming NADH oxidase could regulate the metabolism of both the S. cerevisiae and the C. acetobutylicum strains in anaerobic conditions. Thus, the recombinant S. cerevisiae strain might be useful in industrial production. Besides the recognized electron acceptor O2, methylene blue and/or the structural analogs may be the alternative elector acceptor of the NADH oxidase in anaerobic conditions.
Project description:Background:Reduction or elimination of by-product formation is of immediate economic relevance in fermentation processes for industrial bioethanol production with the yeast Saccharomyces cerevisiae. Anaerobic cultures of wild-type S. cerevisiae require formation of glycerol to maintain the intracellular NADH/NAD+ balance. Previously, functional expression of the Calvin-cycle enzymes ribulose-1,5-bisphosphate carboxylase (RuBisCO) and phosphoribulokinase (PRK) in S. cerevisiae was shown to enable reoxidation of NADH with CO2 as electron acceptor. In slow-growing cultures, this engineering strategy strongly decreased the glycerol yield, while increasing the ethanol yield on sugar. The present study explores engineering strategies to improve rates of growth and alcoholic fermentation in yeast strains that functionally express RuBisCO and PRK, while maximizing the positive impact on the ethanol yield. Results:Multi-copy integration of a bacterial-RuBisCO expression cassette was combined with expression of the Escherichia coli GroEL/GroES chaperones and expression of PRK from the anaerobically inducible DAN1 promoter. In anaerobic, glucose-grown bioreactor batch cultures, the resulting S. cerevisiae strain showed a 31% lower glycerol yield and a 31% lower specific growth rate than a non-engineered reference strain. Growth of the engineered strain in anaerobic, glucose-limited chemostat cultures revealed a negative correlation between its specific growth rate and the contribution of the Calvin-cycle enzymes to redox homeostasis. Additional deletion of GPD2, which encodes an isoenzyme of NAD+-dependent glycerol-3-phosphate dehydrogenase, combined with overexpression of the structural genes for enzymes of the non-oxidative pentose-phosphate pathway, yielded a CO2-reducing strain that grew at the same rate as a non-engineered reference strain in anaerobic bioreactor batch cultures, while exhibiting a 86% lower glycerol yield and a 15% higher ethanol yield. Conclusions:The metabolic engineering strategy presented here enables an almost complete elimination of glycerol production in anaerobic, glucose-grown batch cultures of S. cerevisiae, with an associated increase in ethanol yield, while retaining near wild-type growth rates and a capacity for glycerol formation under osmotic stress. Using current genome-editing techniques, the required genetic modifications can be introduced in one or a few transformations. Evaluation of this concept in industrial strains and conditions is therefore a realistic next step towards its implementation for improving the efficiency of first- and second-generation bioethanol production.
Project description:Glycerol is a major by-product of industrial ethanol production and its formation consumes up to 4 % of the sugar substrate. This study modified the glycerol decomposition pathway of an industrial strain of Saccharomyces cerevisiae to optimize the consumption of substrate and yield of ethanol. This study is the first to couple glycerol degradation with ethanol formation, to the best of our knowledge. The recombinant strain overexpressing GCY1 and DAK1, encoding glycerol dehydrogenase and dihydroxyacetone kinase, respectively, in glycerol degradation pathway, exhibited a moderate increase in ethanol yield (2.9 %) and decrease in glycerol yield (24.9 %) compared to the wild type with the initial glucose concentration of 15 % under anaerobic conditions. However, when the mhpF gene, encoding acetylating NAD?-dependent acetaldehyde dehydrogenase from Escherichia coli, was co-expressed in the aforementioned recombinant strain, a further increase in ethanol yield by 5.5 % and decrease in glycerol yield by 48 % were observed for the resultant recombinant strain GDMS1 when acetic acid was added into the medium prior to inoculation compared to the wild type. The process outlined in this study which enhances glycerol consumption and cofactor regulation in an industrial yeast is a promising metabolic engineering strategy to increase ethanol production by reducing the formation of glycerol.
Project description:Ferredoxin:NAD<sup>+</sup> oxidoreductase (NADH-FNOR) catalyzes the transfer of electrons from reduced ferredoxin to NAD<sup>+</sup> This enzyme has been hypothesized to be the main enzyme responsible for ferredoxin oxidization in the NADH-based ethanol pathway in Thermoanaerobacterium saccharolyticum; however, the corresponding gene has not yet been identified. Here, we identified the Tsac_1705 protein as a candidate FNOR based on the homology of its functional domains. We then confirmed its activity in vitro with a ferredoxin-based FNOR assay. To determine its role in metabolism, the tsac_1705 gene was deleted in different strains of T. saccharolyticum In wild-type T. saccharolyticum, deletion of tsac_1705 resulted in a 75% loss of NADH-FNOR activity, which indicated that Tsac_1705 is the main NADH-FNOR in T. saccharolyticum When both NADH- and NADPH-linked FNOR genes were deleted, the ethanol titer decreased and the ratio of ethanol to acetate approached unity, indicative of the absence of FNOR activity. Finally, we tested the effect of heterologous expression of Tsac_1705 in Clostridium thermocellum and found improvements in both the titer and the yield of ethanol.<h4>Importance</h4>Redox balance plays a crucial role in many metabolic engineering strategies. Ferredoxins are widely used as electron carriers for anaerobic microorganism and plants. This study identified the gene responsible for electron transfer from ferredoxin to NAD<sup>+</sup>, a key reaction in the ethanol production pathway of this organism and many other metabolic pathways. Identification of this gene is an important step in transferring the ethanol production ability of this organism to other organisms.