Skip to main content


Log in

An overview of the biological production of 1-deoxynojirimycin: current status and future perspective

  • Mini-Review
  • Published:
Applied Microbiology and Biotechnology Aims and scope Submit manuscript


1-Deoxynojirimycin (DNJ), a representative iminopyranose, is widely used in anti-diabetic, antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, and anti-obesity applications. It naturally exists in plants, insects, and the culture broth of some microbes as a secondary metabolite product. However, the content of DNJ in plants and insects is relatively low, which is an obstacle to investigating DNJ in terms of structure–function relationships and restricts large-scale industrial production. With the development of micro-biotechnology, the production of DNJ during microbial fermentation has potential for industrial applications. In this review, we primarily focus on the microbial production of DNJ. The review covers sources of DNJ, determination methods, and physiological functions and applications. In a discussion of the efficient production of DNJ microorganisms, we summarize the current methods for DNJ screening and how to guide industrialized large-scale production of DNJ through fermentation regulation strategies. In addition, differences in the biosynthetic pathways of DNJ in different sources are also summarized. Finally, a comparison of DNJ content derived from different sources is discussed.

This is a preview of subscription content, log in via an institution to check access.

Access this article

Price excludes VAT (USA)
Tax calculation will be finalised during checkout.

Instant access to the full article PDF.

Fig. 1
Fig. 2
Fig. 3

Similar content being viewed by others


Download references


This work was financially supported by Innovation Project of Guangxi Graduate Education (YCBZ2017022), National Natural Science Foundation of China (31560448).

Author information

Authors and Affiliations


Corresponding authors

Correspondence to Hao Wu or Zhiqun Liang.

Ethics declarations

Conflict of interest

The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.

Ethical approval

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

Additional information

Publisher’s note

Springer Nature remains neutral with regard to jurisdictional claims in published maps and institutional affiliations.

Rights and permissions

Reprints and permissions

About this article

Check for updates. Verify currency and authenticity via CrossMark

Cite this article

Zhang, W., Mu, W., Wu, H. et al. An overview of the biological production of 1-deoxynojirimycin: current status and future perspective. Appl Microbiol Biotechnol 103, 9335–9344 (2019).

Download citation

  • Received:

  • Revised:

  • Accepted:

  • Published:

  • Issue Date:

  • DOI: