Project description:Successful implementation of modified cyanobacteria as hosts for industrial applications requires the development of a cyanobacterial chassis. The cyanobacterium Synechococcus sp. PCC 7002 embodies key attributes for an industrial host, including a fast growth rate and high salt, light, and temperature tolerances. This study addresses key limitations in the advancement of Synechococcus sp. PCC 7002 as an industrial chassis.Tools for genome integration were developed and characterized, including several putative neutral sites for genome integration. The minimum homology arm length for genome integration in Synechococcus sp. PCC 7002 was determined to be approximately 250 bp. Three fluorescent protein reporters (hGFP, Ypet, and mOrange) were characterized for gene expression, microscopy, and flow cytometry applications in Synechococcus sp. PCC 7002. Of these three proteins, the yellow fluorescent protein (Ypet) had the best optical properties for minimal interference with the native photosynthetic pigments and for detection using standard microscopy and flow cytometry optics. Twenty-five native promoters were characterized as tools for recombinant gene expression in Synechococcus sp. PCC 7002 based on previous RNA-seq results. This characterization included comparisons of protein and mRNA levels as well as expression under both continuous and diurnal light conditions. Promoters A2520 and A2579 were found to have strong expression in Synechococcus sp. PCC 7002 while promoters A1930, A1961, A2531, and A2813 had moderate expression. Promoters A2520 and A2813 showed more than twofold increases in gene expression under light conditions compared to dark, suggesting these promoters may be useful tools for engineering diurnal regulation.The genome integration, fluorescent protein, and promoter tools developed in this study will help to advance Synechococcus sp. PCC 7002 as a cyanobacterial chassis. The long minimum homology arm length for Synechococcus sp. PCC 7002 genome integration indicates native exonuclease activity or a low efficiency of homologous recombination. Low correlation between transcript and protein levels in Synechococcus sp. PCC 7002 suggests that transcriptomic data are poor selection criteria for promoter tool development. Lastly, the conventional strategy of using promoters from photosynthetic operons as strong promoter tools is debunked, as promoters from hypothetical proteins (A2520 and A2579) were found to have much higher expression levels.
Project description:Application of genome-scale 'omics approaches to dissect subcellular pathways and regulatory networks governing the fast-growing response of Synechococcus sp. PCC 7002 response to variable irradience levels. We employed controlled cultivation and next-generation sequencing technology to identify transcriptional responses of euryhaline unicellular cyanobacterium Synechococcus sp. PCC 7002 grown under steady state conditions at six irradiance levels ranging from 33 to 760 µmol photons m-2 sec-1.
Project description:Cyanobacteria are an important group of organisms that carry out oxygenic photosynthesis and play vital roles in both the carbon and nitrogen cycles of the Earth. The annotated genome of Synechococcus sp. PCC 7002, as an ideal model cyanobacterium, is available. A series of transcriptomic and proteomic studies of Synechococcus sp. PCC 7002 cells grown under different conditions have been reported. However, no database of such integrated omics studies has been constructed. Here we present CyanOmics, a database based on the results of Synechococcus sp. PCC 7002 omics studies. CyanOmics comprises one genomic dataset, 29 transcriptomic datasets and one proteomic dataset and should prove useful for systematic and comprehensive analysis of all those data. Powerful browsing and searching tools are integrated to help users directly access information of interest with enhanced visualization of the analytical results. Furthermore, Blast is included for sequence-based similarity searching and Cluster 3.0, as well as the R hclust function is provided for cluster analyses, to increase CyanOmics's usefulness. To the best of our knowledge, it is the first integrated omics analysis database for cyanobacteria. This database should further understanding of the transcriptional patterns, and proteomic profiling of Synechococcus sp. PCC 7002 and other cyanobacteria. Additionally, the entire database framework is applicable to any sequenced prokaryotic genome and could be applied to other integrated omics analysis projects. Database URL: http://lag.ihb.ac.cn/cyanomics.
Project description:The cyanobacterium Synechococcus sp. strain PCC 7002 is a cobalamin auxotroph and utilizes this coenzyme solely for the synthesis of l-methionine by methionine synthase (MetH). Synechococcus sp. strain PCC 7002 is unable to synthesize cobalamin de novo, and because of the large size of this tetrapyrrole, an active-transport system must exist for cobalamin uptake. Surprisingly, no cobalamin transport system was identified in the initial annotation of the genome of this organism. With more sophisticated in silico prediction tools, a btuB-cpdA-btuC-btuF operon encoding components putatively required for a B12 uptake (btu) system was identified. The expression of these genes was predicted to be controlled by a cobalamin riboswitch. Global transcriptional profiling by high-throughput RNA sequencing of a cobalamin-independent form of Synechococcus sp. strain PCC 7002 grown in the absence or presence of cobalamin confirmed regulation of the btu operon by cobalamin. Pérez et al. (A. A. Pérez, Z. Liu, D. A. Rodionov, Z. Li, and D. A. Bryant, J Bacteriol 198:2743-2752, 2016, http://dx.doi.org/10.1128/JB.00475-16) developed a cobalamin-dependent yellow fluorescent protein reporter system in a Synechococcus sp. strain PCC 7002 variant that had been genetically modified to allow cobalamin-independent growth. This reporter system was exploited to validate components of the btu uptake system by assessing the ability of targeted mutants to transport cobalamin. The btuB promoter and a variant counterpart mutated in an essential element of the predicted cobalamin riboswitch were fused to a yfp reporter. The combined data indicate that the btuB-cpdA-btuF-btuC operon in this cyanobacterium is transcriptionally regulated by a cobalamin riboswitch.With a cobalamin-regulated reporter system for expression of yellow fluorescent protein, genes previously misidentified as encoding subunits of a siderophore transporter were shown to encode components of cobalamin uptake in the cyanobacterium Synechococcus sp. strain PCC 7002. This study demonstrates the importance of experimental validation of in silico predictions and provides a general scheme for in vivo verification of similar cobalamin transport systems. A putative cobalamin riboswitch was identified in Synechococcus sp. strain PCC 7002. This riboswitch acts as a potential transcriptional attenuator of the btu operon that encodes the components of the cobalamin active-transport system.
Project description:Microbial free fatty acids (FFAs) have been proposed as a potential feedstock for renewable energy. The ability to directly convert carbon dioxide into FFAs makes cyanobacteria ideal hosts for renewable FFA production. Previous metabolic engineering efforts using the cyanobacterial hosts Synechocystis sp. PCC 6803 and Synechococcus elongatus PCC 7942 have demonstrated this direct conversion of carbon dioxide into FFAs; however, FFA yields in these hosts are limited by the negative impact of FFA production on the host cell physiology. This work investigates the use of Synechococcus sp. PCC 7002 as a cyanobacterial host for FFA production. In comparison to S. elongatus PCC 7942, Synechococcus sp. PCC 7002 strains produced and excreted FFAs at similar concentrations but without the detrimental effects on host physiology. The enhanced tolerance to FFA production with Synechococcus sp. PCC 7002 was found to be temperature-dependent, with physiological effects such as reduced photosynthetic yield and decreased photosynthetic pigments observed at higher temperatures. Additional genetic manipulations were targeted for increased FFA production, including thioesterases and ribulose-1,5-bisphosphate carboxylase/oxygenase (RuBisCO). Overexpression of non-native RuBisCO subunits (rbcLS) from a psbAI promoter resulted in more than a threefold increase in FFA production, with excreted FFA concentrations reaching >130?mg/L. This work illustrates the importance of host strain selection for cyanobacterial biofuel production and demonstrates that the FFA tolerance of Synechococcus sp. PCC 7002 can allow for high yields of excreted FFA.
Project description:Inorganic polyphosphate bodies (PPB) have recently been linked to a variety of functions in mammalian cells. To improve the yield of PPB from Synechococcus sp. PCC 7002 and characterize its form, in this study, a recombinant plasmid containing a polyphosphate kinase (ppk) gene was generated and transformed into Synechococcus sp. PCC 7002.PPB separated by Sephadex G-100 was characterized and added to polarized human intestinal epithelial (Caco-2) cells, and the absorption effect was assessed. The ppk gene was stably expressed by induction with 1 μM nickel, and the resulting PPB yield from Synechococcus sp. PCC 7002 cells increased by 89.66%. Transmission electron microscopy and dynamic light scattering analyses showed that PPB from these cells were nanosized, ranging from a few to approximately 100 nanometres in diameter. PPB can be taken up by Caco-2 cells and are mainly distributed around lipid droplets.We determined that PPB can be overproduced in Synechococcus sp. PCC 7002 and that the resulting PPB were well absorbed by Caco-2 cells. Microalgae provide a promising "cell factory" for PPB production.
Project description:Oxygenic photosynthetic microorganisms such as cyanobacteria and microalgae have attracted attention as an alternative carbon source for the next generation of biofuels. Glycogen abundantly accumulated in cyanobacteria is a promising feedstock which can be converted to ethanol through saccharification and fermentation processes. In addition, the utilization of marine cyanobacteria as a glycogen producer can eliminate the need for a freshwater supply. Synechococcus sp. strain PCC 7002 is a fast-growing marine coastal euryhaline cyanobacteria, however, the glycogen yield has not yet been determined. In the present study, the effects of light intensity, CO2 concentration, and salinity on the cell growth and glycogen content were investigated in order to maximize glycogen production in Synechococcus sp. strain PCC 7002.The optimal culture conditions for glycogen production in Synechococcus sp. strain PCC 7002 were investigated. The maximum glycogen production of 3.5 g L(-1) for 7 days (a glycogen productivity of 0.5 g L(-1) d(-1)) was obtained under a high light intensity, a high CO2 level, and a nitrogen-depleted condition in brackish water. The glycogen production performance in Synechococcus sp. strain PCC 7002 was the best ever reported in the ?-polyglucan (glycogen or starch) production of cyanobacteria and microalgae. In addition, the robustness of glycogen production in Synechococcus sp. strain PCC 7002 to salinity was evaluated in seawater and freshwater. The peak of glycogen production of Synechococcus sp. strain PCC 7002 in seawater and freshwater were 3.0 and 1.8 g L(-1) in 7 days, respectively. Glycogen production in Synechococcus sp. strain PCC 7002 maintained the same level in seawater and half of the level in freshwater compared with the optimal result obtained in brackish water.We conclude that Synechococcus sp. strain PCC 7002 has high glycogen production activity and glycogen can be provided from coastal water accompanied by a fluctuation of salinity. This work supports Synechococcus sp. strain PCC 7002 as a promising carbohydrate source for biofuel production.
Project description:The euryhaline cyanobacterium Synechococcus sp. strain PCC 7002 has an obligate requirement for exogenous vitamin B12 (cobalamin), but little is known about the roles of this compound in cyanobacteria. Bioinformatic analyses suggest that only the terminal enzyme in methionine biosynthesis, methionine synthase, requires cobalamin as a coenzyme in Synechococcus sp. strain PCC 7002. Methionine synthase (MetH) catalyzes the transfer of a methyl group from N(5)-methyl-5,6,7,8-tetrahydrofolate to l-homocysteine during l-methionine synthesis and uses methylcobalamin as an intermediate methyl donor. Numerous bacteria and plants alternatively employ a cobalamin-independent methionine synthase isozyme, MetE, that catalyzes the same methyl transfer reaction as MetH but uses N(5)-methyl-5,6,7,8-tetrahydrofolate directly as the methyl donor. The cobalamin auxotrophy of Synechococcus sp. strain PCC 7002 was complemented by using the metE gene from the closely related cyanobacterium Synechococcus sp. strain PCC 73109, which possesses genes for both methionine synthases. This result suggests that methionine biosynthesis is probably the sole use of cobalamin in Synechococcus sp. strain PCC 7002. Furthermore, a cobalamin-repressible gene expression system was developed in Synechococcus sp. strain PCC 7002 that was used to validate the presence of a cobalamin riboswitch in the promoter region of metE from Synechococcus sp. strain PCC 73109. This riboswitch acts as a cobalamin-dependent transcriptional attenuator for metE in that organism.Synechococcus sp. strain PCC 7002 is a cobalamin auxotroph because, like eukaryotic marine algae, it uses a cobalamin-dependent methionine synthase (MetH) for the final step of l-methionine biosynthesis but cannot synthesize cobalamin de novo Heterologous expression of metE, encoding cobalamin-independent methionine synthase, from Synechococcus sp. strain PCC 73109, relieved this auxotrophy and enabled the construction of a truly autotrophic Synechococcus sp. strain PCC 7002 more suitable for large-scale industrial applications. Characterization of a cobalamin riboswitch expands the genetic toolbox for Synechococcus sp. strain PCC 7002 by providing a cobalamin-repressible expression system.
Project description:We have developed a simple procedure for generating mutants of the cyanobacterium Synechococcus sp. strain PCC 7942 in which the site of the lesion can be readily identified. This procedure involves transforming Synechococcus sp. strain PCC 7942 with a library of its own DNA that was fully digested with Sau3A and ligated into the plasmid vector pUC8. The homologous integration of the recombinant plasmid into the genome will often result in the disruption of a gene and the loss of gene function. We have used this method to generate many mutants of Synechococcus sp. strain PCC 7942 which grow as multicellular filaments rather than as unicells. Since the gene harboring the lesion was tagged with pUC8, it was easily isolated. In this paper, we discuss the usefulness of this procedure for the generation of mutants, and we characterize one mutant in which the lesion may be in an operon involved in the assembly of lipopolysaccharides.
Project description:Cyanobacterial regulation of gene expression must contend with a genome organization that lacks apparent functional context, as the majority of cellular processes and metabolic pathways are encoded by genes found at disparate locations across the genome and relatively few transcription factors exist. In this study, global transcript abundance data from the model cyanobacterium Synechococcus sp. PCC 7002 grown under 42 different conditions was analyzed using Context-Likelihood of Relatedness (CLR). The resulting network, organized into 11 modules, provided insight into transcriptional network topology as well as grouping genes by function and linking their response to specific environmental variables. When used in conjunction with genome sequences, the network allowed identification and expansion of novel potential targets of both DNA binding proteins and sRNA regulators. These results offer a new perspective into the multi-level regulation that governs cellular adaptations of the fast-growing physiologically robust cyanobacterium Synechococcus sp. PCC 7002 to changing environmental variables. It also provides a methodological high-throughput approach to studying multi-scale regulatory mechanisms that operate in cyanobacteria. Finally, it provides valuable context for integrating systems-level data to enhance gene grouping based on annotated function, especially in organisms where traditional context analyses cannot be implemented due to lack of operon-based functional organization.