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J Antibiot (Tokyo). 2017 Jul;70(7):828-831. doi: 10.1038/ja.2017.49. Epub 2017 May 3.

Nutritional control of antibiotic production by Streptomyces platensis MA7327: importance of l-aspartic acid.

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Research Institute of Scientists Emeriti (RISE), Charles A. Dana Research Institute, Drew University, Madison, NJ, USA.
Department of Chemistry, The Scripps Research Institute, Jupiter, FL, USA.


Streptomyces platensis MA7327 is a bacterium producing interesting antibiotics, which act by the novel mechanism of inhibiting fatty acid biosynthesis. The antibiotics produced by this actinomycete are platensimycin and platencin plus some minor related antibiotics. Platensimycin and platencin have activity against antibiotic-resistant bacteria such as methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus and vancomycin-resistant Enterococcus; they also lack toxicity in animal models. Platensimycin also has activity against diabetes in a mouse model. We have been interested in studying the effects of primary metabolites on production of these antibiotics in our chemically defined production medium. In the present work, we tested 32 primary metabolites for their effect. They included 20 amino acids, 7 vitamins and 5 nucleic acid derivatives. Of these, only l-aspartic acid showed stimulation of antibiotic production. We conclude that the stimulatory effect of aspartic acid is due to its role as a precursor involved in the biosynthesis of aspartate-4-semialdehyde, which is the starting point for the biosynthesis of the 3-amino-2,4-dihydroxy benzoic acid portion of the platensimycin molecule.

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