Identification of major malate export systems in an engineered malate-producing Escherichia coli aided by substrate similarity search

Gavin Kurgan, Logan Kurgan, Aidan Schneider, Moses Onyeabor, Yesenia Rodriguez-Sanchez, Eric Taylor, Rodrigo Martinez, Pablo Carbonell, Xiaojian Shi, Haiwei Gu, Xuan Wang

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

1 Scopus citations

Abstract

Optimization of export mechanisms for valuable extracellular products is important for the development of efficient microbial production processes. Identification of the relevant export mechanism is the prerequisite step for product export optimization. In this work, we identified transporters involved in malate export in an engineered l-malate-producing Escherichia coli strain using cheminformatics-guided genetics tests. Among all short-chain di- or tricarboxylates with known transporters in E. coli, citrate, tartrate, and succinate are most chemically similar to malate as estimated by their molecular signatures. Inactivation of three previously reported transporters for succinate, tartrate, and citrate, DcuA, TtdT, and CitT, respectively, dramatically decreased malate production and fermentative growth, suggesting that these transporters have substrate promiscuity for different short-chain organic acids and constitute the major malate export system in E. coli. Malate export deficiency led to an increase in cell sizes and accumulation of intracellular metabolites related to malate metabolism.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)9001-9011
Number of pages11
JournalApplied Microbiology and Biotechnology
Volume103
Issue number21-22
DOIs
StatePublished - Nov 1 2019

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Keywords

  • Escherichia coli
  • Export
  • Malate
  • Signature molecular descriptor
  • Transporter

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biotechnology
  • Applied Microbiology and Biotechnology

Cite this

Kurgan, G., Kurgan, L., Schneider, A., Onyeabor, M., Rodriguez-Sanchez, Y., Taylor, E., Martinez, R., Carbonell, P., Shi, X., Gu, H., & Wang, X. (2019). Identification of major malate export systems in an engineered malate-producing Escherichia coli aided by substrate similarity search. Applied Microbiology and Biotechnology, 103(21-22), 9001-9011. https://doi.org/10.1007/s00253-019-10164-y