Skip to main content
Log in

Biotransformation of tryptamine and secologanin into plant terpenoid indole alkaloids by transgenic yeast

  • Original Paper
  • Published:
Applied Microbiology and Biotechnology Aims and scope Submit manuscript

Abstract.

A transgenic Saccharomyces cerevisiae was constructed containing the cDNAs coding for strictosidine synthase (STR) and strictosidine β-glucosidase (SGD) from the medicinal plant Catharanthus roseus. Both enzymes are involved in the biosynthesis of terpenoid indole alkaloids. The yeast culture was found to express high levels of both enzymes. STR activity was found both inside the cells (13.2 nkatal/g fresh weight) and in the medium (up to 25 nkatal/l medium), whereas SGD activity was present only inside the yeast cells (2.5 mkatal/g fresh weight). Upon feeding of tryptamine and secologanin, this transgenic yeast culture produced high levels of strictosidine in the medium; levels up to 2 g/l were measured. Inside the yeast cells strictosidine was also detected, although in much lower amounts (0.2 mg/g cells). This was due to the low permeability of the cells towards the substrates, secologanin and tryptamine. However, the strictosidine present in the medium was completely hydrolyzed to cathenamine, after permeabilizing the yeast cells. Furthermore, transgenic S. cerevisiae was able to grow on an extract of Symphoricarpus albus berries serving as a source for secologanin and carbohydrates. Under these conditions, the addition of tryptamine was sufficient for the transgenic yeast culture to produce indole alkaloids. Our results show that transgenic yeast cultures are an interesting alternative for the production of plant alkaloids.

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.

Similar content being viewed by others

Author information

Authors and Affiliations

Authors

Additional information

Received revision: 22 February 2001

Electronic Publication

Rights and permissions

Reprints and permissions

About this article

Cite this article

Geerlings, .A., Redondo, .F., Contin, .A. et al. Biotransformation of tryptamine and secologanin into plant terpenoid indole alkaloids by transgenic yeast. Appl Microbiol Biotechnol 56, 420–424 (2001). https://doi.org/10.1007/s002530100663

Download citation

  • Received:

  • Accepted:

  • Issue Date:

  • DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/s002530100663

Keywords

Navigation