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FEMS Yeast Res. 2005 Feb;5(4-5):419-30.

Changes in the metabolome of Saccharomyces cerevisiae associated with evolution in aerobic glucose-limited chemostats.

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  • 1Department of Biotechnology, Faculty of Applied Sciences, Technical University of Delft, 67 Julianalaan, 2628 BC Delft, The Netherlands.


The effect of culture age on intra- and extracellular metabolite levels as well as on in vitro determined specific activities of enzymes of central carbon metabolism was investigated during evolution for over 90 generations of Saccharomyces cerevisiae CEN.PK 113-7D in an aerobic glucose/ethanol-limited chemostat at a specific dilution rate of 0.052 h(-1). It was found that the fluxes of consumed (O2, glucose/ethanol) and secreted compounds (CO2) did not change significantly during the entire cultivation period. However, morphological changes were observed, leading to an increased cellular surface area. During 90 generations of chemostat growth not only the residual glucose concentration decreased, also the intracellular concentrations of trehalose, glycolytic intermediates, TCA cycle intermediates and amino acids were found to have decreased with a factor 5-10. The only exception was glyoxylate which showed a fivefold increase in concentration. In addition to this the specific activities of most glycolytic enzymes also decreased by a factor 5-10 during long-term cultivation. Exceptions to this were hexokinase, phosphofructokinase, pyruvate kinase and 6-phosphogluconate dehydrogenase of which the activities remained unchanged. Furthermore, the concentrations of the adenylate nucleotides as well as the energy charge of the cells did not change in a significant manner. Surprisingly, the specific activities of glucose-6-phosphate dehydrogenase (G6PDH), malate synthase (MS) and isocitrate lyase (ICL) increased significantly during 90 generations of chemostat cultivation. These changes seem to indicate a pattern where metabolic overcapacities (for reversible reactions) and storage pools (trehalose, high levels of amino acids and excess protein in enzymes) are lost during the evolution period. The driving force is proposed to be a growth advantage in the absence of these metabolic overcapacities.

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