Biosynthesis of poly-β-hydroxybutyrate (PHB) with a high molecular mass by a mutant strain of Azotobacter vinelandii (OPN)
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The aim of this study was to characterize the influence of the aeration conditions on the production of PHB and its molecular mass in a mutant strain of Azotobacter vinelandii (OPN), which carries a mutation on ptsN, the gene encoding enzyme IIANtr, previously shown to increase the accumulation of PHB. Cultures of A. vinelandii wild-type strain OP and its mutant derivative strain OPN were grown in 500-mL flasks, containing 100 and 200 mL of PY sucrose medium. PHB production and its molecular mass were analyzed at the end of the culture. The molecular mass (MM) was significantly influenced by the aeration conditions and strain used. A polymer with a higher molecular weight was produced under low aeration conditions for both strains. A maximal molecular mass of 2,026 kDa (equivalent to 3,670 kDa measured by GPC) was obtained with strain OPN cultured under low-aeration conditions, reaching a value two-fold higher than that obtained from the parental strain OP (MM = 1,013 kDa) grown under the same conditions. Aeration conditions and the ptsN mutation influence the molecular mass of the PHB produced by A. vinelandii affecting in turn its physico-chemical properties.
KeywordsPHB Molecular mass Aeration conditions Azotobacter vinelandii
The authors gratefully acknowledge the technical help of Maraolina Dominguez-Diaz (LNyC, UNAM) and Modesto Millán (IBT, UNAM). This work was partially financed by DGAPA-UNAM (grants IT209411-3 and IN110310), and CONACyT under CIAM2008 program (grant 107294).
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