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Appl Microbiol Biotechnol. 2010 Mar;86(1):93-101. doi: 10.1007/s00253-009-2285-0. Epub 2009 Oct 27.

Increased product formation induced by a directed secondary substrate limitation in a batch Hansenula polymorpha culture.

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  • 1Chair of Biochemical Engineering, RWTH Aachen University, Worringerweg 1, Sammelbau Biologie, 52056 Aachen, Germany.


By the use of directed limitations of secondary substrates, the metabolic flux should be deflected from biomass production to product formation. In order to study the impact of directed limitations caused by various secondary substrates on the growth and product formation of the methylotrophic yeast Hansenula polymorpha, the cultivation systems respiration activity monitoring system (RAMOS) and BioLector were used in parallel. While the RAMOS device allows the online monitoring of the oxygen transfer rate in shake flasks, the BioLector enables in microtiter plates the monitoring of scattered light and the fluorescence intensity of the green fluorescent protein (GFP). Secondary substrate limitations of phosphate, potassium, and magnesium were analyzed in batch fermentations. The sole carbon source was either 10 g/L glucose or 10 g/L glycerol. The expression of the GFP gene is controlled by the FMD promoter (formate dehydrogenase). In batch cultures with glucose as carbon source, a directed limitation of phosphate increased the GFP production 1.87-fold, compared to phosphate unlimited conditions. Under potassium-limited conditions with glycerol as sole carbon source, the GFP production was 1.41-fold higher compared to unlimited conditions. A limitation of the substrate magnesium resulted in a 1.22-fold increase GFP formation in the case of glycerol as carbon source.

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