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Sci Rep. 2015 Jul 1;5:11617. doi: 10.1038/srep11617.

New Insight into the Role of the Calvin Cycle: Reutilization of CO2 Emitted through Sugar Degradation.

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Department of Bioengineering, Graduate School of Bioscience and Biotechnology, Tokyo Institute of Technology, 4259 Nagatsuta, Midori-ku, Yokohama 226-8501, Japan.
Department of Biotechnology, Graduate School of Engineering, Osaka University, 2-1 Yamadaoka, Suita, Osaka 565-0871, Japan.


Ralstonia eutropha is a facultative chemolithoautotrophic bacterium that uses the Calvin-Benson-Bassham (CBB) cycle for CO2 fixation. This study showed that R. eutropha strain H16G incorporated (13)CO2, emitted by the oxidative decarboxylation of [1-(13)C1]-glucose, into key metabolites of the CBB cycle and finally into poly(3-hydroxybutyrate) [P(3HB)] with up to 5.6% (13)C abundance. The carbon yield of P(3HB) produced from glucose by the strain H16G was 1.2 times higher than that by the CBB cycle-inactivated mutants, in agreement with the possible fixation of CO2 estimated from the balance of energy and reducing equivalents through sugar degradation integrated with the CBB cycle. The results proved that the 'gratuitously' functional CBB cycle in R. eutropha under aerobic heterotrophic conditions participated in the reutilization of CO2 emitted during sugar degradation, leading to an advantage expressed as increased carbon yield of the storage compound. This is a new insight into the role of the CBB cycle, and may be applicable for more efficient utilization of biomass resources.

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