Optimization of hexanoic acid production in recombinant Escherichia coli by precise flux rebalancing

Seong Gyeong Kim, Sungho Jang, Jae Hyung Lim, Byoung Seung Jeon, Jungyeon Kim, Kyoung Heon Kim, Byoung In Sang, Gyoo Yeol Jung

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

22 Citations (Scopus)


The aim of this study is to demonstrate that rebalancing of metabolic fluxes at acetyl-CoA branch node can substantially improve the titer and productivity of hexanoic acid in recombinant Escherichia coli strains. First, a hexanoic acid-producing E. coli strain was constructed by expressing genes encoding β-ketothiolase (BktB) from Cupriavidus necator and acetyl-CoA transferase (ACT) from Megasphaera sp. MH in a butyric acid producer strain. Next, metabolic flux was optimized at the acetyl-CoA branch node by fine-tuning the expression level of the gene for acetyl-CoA acetyltransferase (AtoB). Four synthetic 5′-untranslated regions were designed for atoB using UTR Designer to modulate the expression level of the gene. Notably, the productivity of the optimized strain (14.7 mg/L/h) was the highest among recombinant E. coli strains in literature when using a similar inoculum size for fermentation. These results show that fine-tuning the expression level of atoB is critical for production of hexanoic acid.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1253-1257
Number of pages5
JournalBioresource technology
Publication statusPublished - 2018 Jan

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
This work was supported by the National Research Foundation of Korea (NRF) grants ( NRF-2015H1A2A1034522 , NRF-2015R1A2A1A10056126 , NRF-2016K1A1A2912829 ) funded by the Ministry of Science and ICT of Korea and the Marine Biotechnology Program (Marine BioMaterials Research Center) funded by the Ministry of Oceans and Fisheries of Korea.

Publisher Copyright:
© 2017 Elsevier Ltd


  • 5′-UTR
  • Acetyl-CoA acetyltransferase
  • Acetyl-CoA transferase
  • Flux rebalancing
  • Hexanoic acid

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Bioengineering
  • Environmental Engineering
  • Renewable Energy, Sustainability and the Environment
  • Waste Management and Disposal


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