Methods in Molecular Biology Volume 765, 2011, pp 99-111

Optimization of Synthetic Operons Using Libraries of Post-Transcriptional Regulatory Elements

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Abstract

Constructing polycistronic operons is an advantageous strategy for coordinating the expression of ­multiple genes in a prokaryotic host. Unfortunately, a basic construct consisting of an inducible promoter and genes cloned in series does not generally lead to optimal results. Here, a combinatorial approach for tuning relative gene expression in operons is presented. The method constructs libraries of post-­transcriptional regulatory elements that can be cloned into the noncoding sequence between genes. Libraries can be screened to identify sequences that optimize expression of metabolic pathways, multisubunit proteins, or other situations where precise stoichiometric ratios of proteins are desired.