, Volume 21, Issue 9, pp 791-795

Metabolic engineering of the terpenoid biosynthetic pathway of Escherichia coli for production of the carotenoids β-carotene and zeaxanthin

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Metabolic engineering of the early non-mevalonate terpenoid pathway of Escherichia coli was carried out to increase the supply of prenyl pyrophosphates as precursor for carotenoid production. Transformation with the genes dxs for over-expression of 1-deoxy-d-xylulose 5-phosphate synthase, dxr for 1-deoxy-d-xylulose 5-phosphate reductoisomerase and idi encoding an isopentenyl pyrophosphate stimulated carotenogenesis up to 3.5-fold. Co-transformation of idi with either dxs or dxr had an additive effect on ß-carotene and zeaxanthin production which reached 1.6 mg g−1 dry wt.