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Appl Microbiol Biotechnol. 2000 Dec;54(6):741-50.

Heterologous protein production in methylotrophic yeasts.

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  • Rhein Biotech GmbH, Düsseldorf, Germany. gellissen_rheinbiotech@compuserve.com


The facultative methylotrophic yeasts Candida boidinii, Pichia methanolica, Pichia pastoris and Hansenula polymorpha have been developed as systems for heterologous gene expression. They are based on strong and regulatable promoters for expression control derived from methanol metabolism pathway genes. An increasing number of biotechnological applications attest to their status as preferred options among the various gene expression hosts. The well-established P. pastoris and H. polymorpha systems have been utilized in especially competitive and consistent industrial-scale production processes. Pharmaceuticals and technical enzymes produced in these methylotrophs have either already entered the market or are expected to do so in the near future. The article describes the present status of the methylotrophic yeasts as expression systems, focusing on applied examples of the recent past.

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