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Atrorosins: a new subgroup of Monascus pigments from Talaromyces atroroseus

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Abstract

A new series of azaphilone pigments named atrorosins have been isolated from the filamentous fungus Talaromyces atroroseus. Atrorosins have a similar azaphilone scaffold as the orange Monascus pigment PP-O, with a carboxylic acid group at C-1, but are unique by their incorporation of amino acids into the isochromene system. Despite that the atrorosin precursor PP-O, during fermentation, was initially produced as two isomers (3:2, cis:trans ratio), the atrorosins were surprisingly almost exclusively (99.5%) produced as the cis-form, possibly due to steric interactions with the incorporated amino acid. When grown on complex media, a whole range of atrorosins is produced, whereas individual atrorosins can be produced selectively during fermentation by supplementing with the desired primary amine-containing compound.

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Funding

The authors would like to thank the Novo Nordisk Foundation for the grant support (NNF16O23644) and Kasper Enemark-Rasmussen at the Department of Chemistry, Technical University of Denmark, for running NMR experiments.

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Correspondence to Thomas Ostenfeld Larsen.

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Isbrandt, T., Tolborg, G., Ødum, A. et al. Atrorosins: a new subgroup of Monascus pigments from Talaromyces atroroseus. Appl Microbiol Biotechnol 104, 615–622 (2020). https://doi.org/10.1007/s00253-019-10216-3

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  • DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/s00253-019-10216-3

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