Applied Microbiology and Biotechnology

, Volume 101, Issue 4, pp 1351–1357 | Cite as

A genetic method to enhance the accumulation of S-adenosylmethionine in yeast

  • Muneyoshi Kanai
  • Masaki Mizunuma
  • Tsutomu Fujii
  • Haruyuki Iefuji


S-Adenosylmethionine (SAM) is a key component of sulphur amino acid metabolism in living organisms and is synthesised from methionine and adenosine triphosphate by methionine adenosyltransferase. This molecule serves as the main biological methyl donor due to its active methylthio ether group. Notably, SAM has shown beneficial effects in clinical trials for the treatment of alcoholic liver disease, depression and joint pain. Due to the high potential value of SAM, current research efforts are attempting to develop a more rapid, cost-effective and higher yielding SAM production method than the conventional production system. In this mini-review, we describe the previously reported yeast gene that contributes to SAM accumulation by overexpression, mutation or deletion and summarise the genetic approach for the production of SAM in large industrial quantities.


S-Adenosylmethionine Yeast Saccharomyces cerevisiae Pichia pastoris Sake yeast Methionine synthesis pathway 



We thank Dr. Dai Hirata (Hiroshima University and Asahi-Shuzo Sake Brewing Co., Ltd.), Dr. Kazunori Kume, Takafumi Ogawa (Hiroshima University), Dr. Osamu Yamada, Akihiro Mizuno, Dr. Kazuo Masaki, Dr. Hiroko Ikeda, Yasumichi Takaoka, Mitsunori Masuda, Yoshie Yoshida, Yasuko Kita, Tomoko Kawata (NRIB), Dr. Daisuke Watanabe (Nara Institute of Science and Technology) and Dr. Hitoshi Shimoi (Iwate University) for their constant guidance, support and helpful discussions.

Compliance with ethical standards

Conflict of interest

The authors declare that they have no competing interests.

Ethical approval

This article does not contain any studies with human participants or animals performed by any of the authors.


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.National Research Institute of BrewingHiroshimaJapan
  2. 2.Hiroshima Research Center for Healthy Aging, Graduate School of Advanced Sciences of MatterHiroshima UniversityHiroshimaJapan
  3. 3.Graduate School of Biosphere ScienceHiroshima UniversityHiroshimaJapan
  4. 4.Present Address: Faculty of AgricultureEhime UniversityMatsuyamaJapan

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