Send to

Choose Destination
See comment in PubMed Commons below
Metab Eng. 2013 Sep;19:107-15. doi: 10.1016/j.ymben.2013.07.002. Epub 2013 Jul 20.

Pathway engineering of Bacillus subtilis for microbial production of N-acetylglucosamine.

Author information

  • 1Key Laboratory of Carbohydrate Chemistry and Biotechnology, Ministry of Education, Jiangnan University, Wuxi 214122, China; Key Laboratory of Industrial Biotechnology, Ministry of Education, Jiangnan University, Wuxi 214122, China.


Glucosamine (GlcN) and its acetylated derivative, N-acetylglucosamine (GlcNAc), are widely used in nutraceutical and pharmaceutical industries. Currently, GlcN and GlcNAc are mainly produced by hydrolysis from crab and shrimp shells, which can cause severe environmental pollution and carries the potential risk of allergic reactions. In this study, we attempted to achieve microbial production of GlcNAc by pathway engineering of Bacillus subtilis 168. Specifically, glmS (encoding GlcN-6-phosphate synthase) from B. subtilis 168 and GNA1 (encoding GlcNAc-6-phosphate N-acetyltransferase) from Saccharomyces cerevisiae S288C were firstly co-overexpressed in B. subtilis; the level of GlcNAc reached 240mg/L in shake flask culture. Next, nagP, encoding the GlcNAc-specific enzyme of phosphotransferase system, was deleted to block the importation of extracellular GlcNAC, thus improving GlcNAc production to 615mg/L in shake flask culture. Then, nagA (encoding GlcNAc-6-phosphate deacetylase), gamA (encoding GlcN-6-phosphate deaminase), and nagB (encoding GlcN-6-phosphate deaminase) were deleted to block the catabolism of intracellular GlcNAc, thereby further increasing the GlcNAc titer to 1.85g/L in shake flask culture. Finally, microbial production of GlcNAc by the engineered B. subtilis 168 was conducted in a 3-L fed-batch bioreactor, and the GlcNAc titer reached 5.19g/L, which was 2.8-fold of that in shake flask culture. This is the first report regarding the pathway engineering of B. subtilis for microbial production of GlcNAc, and provides a good starting point for further metabolic engineering to achieve the industrial production of GlcNAc by a generally regarded as safe strain.


Bacillus subtilis; Glucosamine; N-acetylglucosamine; Pathway engineering

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
PubMed Commons home

PubMed Commons

How to join PubMed Commons

    Supplemental Content

    Full text links

    Icon for Elsevier Science
    Loading ...
    Support Center