Gene array-based identification of changes that contribute to ethanol tolerance in ethanologenic Escherichia coli: comparison of KO11 (parent) to LY01 (resistant mutant).
ABSTRACT Escherichia coli KO11 (parent) and LY01 (mutant) have been engineered for the production of ethanol. Gene arrays were used to identify expression changes that occurred in the mutant, LY01, during directed evolution to improve ethanol tolerance (defined as extent of growth in the presence of added ethanol). Expression levels for 205 (5%) of the ORFs were found to differ significantly (p < 0.10) between KO11 and LY01 under each of six different growth conditions (p < 0.000001). Statistical evaluation of differentially expressed genes according to various classification schemes identified physiological areas of importance. A large fraction of differentially expressed ORFs were globally regulated, leading to the discovery of a nonfunctional fnr gene in strain LY01. In agreement with a putative role for FNR in alcohol tolerance, increasing the copy number of fnr(+) in KO11(pGS196) decreased ethanol tolerance but had no effect on growth in the absence of ethanol. Other differences in gene expression provided additional clues that permitted experimentation. Tolerance appears to involve increased metabolism of glycine (higher expression of gcv genes) and increased production of betaine (higher expression of betIBA and betT encoding betaine synthesis from choline and choline uptake, respectively). Addition of glycine (10 mM) increased ethanol tolerance in KO11 but had no effect in the absence of ethanol. Addition of betaine (10 mM) increased ethanol tolerance by over 2-fold in both LY01 and KO11 but had no effect on growth in the absence of ethanol. Both glycine and betaine can serve as protective osmolytes, and this may be the basis of their beneficial action. In addition, the marAB genes encoding multiple antibiotic resistance proteins were expressed at higher levels in LY01 as compared to KO11. Interestingly, overexpression of marAB in KO11 made this strain more ethanol-sensitive. Overexpression of marAB in LY01 had no effect on ethanol tolerance. Increased expression of genes encoding serine uptake (sdaC) and serine deamination (sdaB) also appear beneficial for LY01. Addition of serine increased the growth of LY01 in the presence and absence of ethanol but had no effect on KO11. Changes in the expression of several genes concerned with the synthesis of the cell envelope components were also noted, which may contribute to increased ethanol tolerance.
[show abstract] [hide abstract]
ABSTRACT: Understanding ethanol tolerance in microorganisms is important for the improvement of bioethanol production. Hence, we performed parallel-evolution experiments using Escherichia coli cells under ethanol stress to determine the phenotypic changes necessary for ethanol tolerance. After cultivation of 1,000 generations under 5% ethanol stress, we obtained 6 ethanol-tolerant strains that showed an approximately 2-fold increase in their specific growth rate in comparison with their ancestor. Expression analysis using microarrays revealed that common expression changes occurred during the adaptive evolution to the ethanol stress environment. Biosynthetic pathways of amino acids, including tryptophan, histidine, and branched-chain amino acids, were commonly up-regulated in the tolerant strains, suggesting that activating these pathways is involved in the development of ethanol tolerance. In support of this hypothesis, supplementation of isoleucine, tryptophan, and histidine to the culture medium increased the specific growth rate under ethanol stress. Furthermore, genes related to iron ion metabolism were commonly up-regulated in the tolerant strains, which suggests the change in intracellular redox state during adaptive evolution. The common phenotypic changes in the ethanol-tolerant strains we identified could provide a fundamental basis for designing ethanol-tolerant strains for industrial purposes.BMC Genomics 10/2010; 11:579. · 4.07 Impact Factor
Article: Evolution combined with genomic study elucidates genetic bases of isobutanol tolerance in Escherichia coli.[show abstract] [hide abstract]
ABSTRACT: Isobutanol is a promising next-generation biofuel with demonstrated high yield microbial production, but the toxicity of this molecule reduces fermentation volumetric productivity and final titer. Organic solvent tolerance is a complex, multigenic phenotype that has been recalcitrant to rational engineering approaches. We apply experimental evolution followed by genome resequencing and a gene expression study to elucidate genetic bases of adaptation to exogenous isobutanol stress. The adaptations acquired in our evolved lineages exhibit antagonistic pleiotropy between minimal and rich medium, and appear to be specific to the effects of longer chain alcohols. By examining genotypic adaptation in multiple independent lineages, we find evidence of parallel evolution in marC, hfq, mdh, acrAB, gatYZABCD, and rph genes. Many isobutanol tolerant lineages show reduced RpoS activity, perhaps related to mutations in hfq or acrAB. Consistent with the complex, multigenic nature of solvent tolerance, we observe adaptations in a diversity of cellular processes. Many adaptations appear to involve epistasis between different mutations, implying a rugged fitness landscape for isobutanol tolerance. We observe a trend of evolution targeting post-transcriptional regulation and high centrality nodes of biochemical networks. Collectively, the genotypic adaptations we observe suggest mechanisms of adaptation to isobutanol stress based on remodeling the cell envelope and surprisingly, stress response attenuation. We have discovered a set of genotypic adaptations that confer increased tolerance to exogenous isobutanol stress. Our results are immediately useful to further efforts to engineer more isobutanol tolerant host strains of E. coli for isobutanol production. We suggest that rpoS and post-transcriptional regulators, such as hfq, RNA helicases, and sRNAs may be interesting mutagenesis targets for future global phenotype engineering.Microbial Cell Factories 03/2011; 10:18. · 3.55 Impact Factor
[show abstract] [hide abstract]
ABSTRACT: ABSTRACT: A major challenge when using microorganisms to produce bulk chemicals such as biofuels is that the production targets are often toxic to cells. Many biofuels are known to reduce cell viability through damage to the cell membrane and interference with essential physiological processes. Therefore, cells must trade off biofuel production and survival, reducing potential yields. Recently, there have been several efforts towards engineering strains for biofuel tolerance. Promising methods include engineering biofuel export systems, heat shock proteins, membrane modifications, more general stress responses, and approaches that integrate multiple tolerance strategies. In addition, in situ recovery methods and media supplements can help to ease the burden of end-product toxicity and may be used in combination with genetic approaches. Recent advances in systems and synthetic biology provide a framework for tolerance engineering. This review highlights recent targeted approaches towards improving microbial tolerance to next-generation biofuels with a particular emphasis on strategies that will improve production.Biotechnology for Biofuels 09/2011; 4:32. · 6.09 Impact Factor