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J Biosci Bioeng. 2011 Dec;112(6):616-23. doi: 10.1016/j.jbiosc.2011.07.021. Epub 2011 Aug 23.

Metabolite channeling and compartmentation in the human cell line AGE1.HN determined by 13C labeling experiments and 13C metabolic flux analysis.

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Biochemical Engineering Institute, Saarland University, Campus A1.5, D-66123 Saarbr├╝cken, Germany.


This study focused on analyzing active pathways and the metabolic flux distribution in human neuronal AGE1.HN cells that is a desirable basis for a rational design and optimization of producing cell lines and production processes for biopharmaceuticals. (13)C-labeling experiments and (13)C metabolic flux analysis were conducted using glucose, glutamine, alanine and lactate tracers in parallel experiments. Connections between cytosolic and mitochondrial metabolite pools were verified, e.g., flux from TCA cycle metabolite (13)C to glycolytic metabolites. It was also found that lactate and alanine are produced from the same pyruvate pool and that consumed alanine is mainly directly metabolized and secreted as lactate. Activity of the pentose phosphate pathway was low being around 2.3% of the glucose uptake flux. This might be compensated in AGE1.HN by high mitochondrial malic enzyme flux producing NADPH. Mitochondrial pyruvate transport was almost zero. Instead pyruvate carbons were channeled via oxaloacetate into the TCA cycle which was mainly fed via ╬▒-ketoglutarate and oxaloacetate during the investigated phase. The data indicate that further optimization of this cell line should focus on the improved substrate usage which can be accomplished by an improved connectivity between glycolytic and mitochondrial pyruvate pools or by better control of the substrate uptake.

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