Evolutionary Engineering for Industrial Microbiology

Chapter
Part of the Subcellular Biochemistry book series (SCBI, volume 64)

Abstract

Superficially, evolutionary engineering is a paradoxical field that balances competing interests. In natural settings, evolution iteratively selects and enriches subpopulations that are best adapted to a particular ecological niche using random processes such as genetic mutation. In engineering desired approaches utilize rational prospective design to address targeted problems. When considering details of evolutionary and engineering processes, more commonality can be found. Engineering relies on detailed knowledge of the problem parameters and design properties in order to predict design outcomes that would be an optimized solution. When detailed knowledge of a system is lacking, engineers often employ algorithmic search strategies to identify empirical solutions. Evolution epitomizes this iterative optimization by continuously diversifying design options from a parental design, and then selecting the progeny designs that represent satisfactory solutions. In this chapter, the technique of applying the natural principles of evolution to engineer microbes for industrial applications is discussed to highlight the challenges and principles of evolutionary engineering.

Keywords

Cellular objectives Directed evolution Diversity Engineering objectives Evolutionary engineering Fitness landscapes Industrial microbiology Screening and selection 

Abbreviations

ADAM

array-based discovery of adaptive mutations

CO

cellular objectives

EMS

ethyl methane sulfonate

EO

engineering objectives

EvoEng

evolutionary engineering

MAGE

multiplex automated genome engineering

NTG

nitroso-methyl guanidine

Oligo(s)

oligonucleotide(s)

RNAseq

RNA sequencing

SELEX

selectable evolution of ligands by exponential enrichment

SS

solution space

StEP

staggered extension process

TRMR

trackable multiplex recombineering

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© Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht 2012

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Chemical and Life Science EngineeringVirginia Commonwealth UniversityRichmondUSA

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