Reassessment of requirements for anaerobic xylose fermentation by engineered, non-evolved Saccharomyces cerevisiae strains

Jasmine M. Bracher, Oscar A. Martinez-Rodriguez, Wijb J.C. Dekker, Maarten D. Verhoeven, Antonius J.A. van Maris, Jack T. Pronk

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review

4 Citations (Scopus)
101 Downloads (Pure)


Expression of a heterologous xylose isomerase, deletion of the GRE3 aldose-reductase gene and overexpression of genes encoding xylulokinase (XKS1) and non-oxidative pentose-phosphate-pathway enzymes (RKI1, RPE1, TAL1, TKL1) enables aerobic growth of Saccharomyces cerevisiae on d-xylose. However, literature reports differ on whether anaerobic growth on d-xylose requires additional mutations. Here, CRISPR-Cas9-assisted reconstruction and physiological analysis confirmed an early report that this basic set of genetic modifications suffices to enable anaerobic growth on d-xylose in the CEN.PK genetic background. Strains that additionally carried overexpression cassettes for the transaldolase and transketolase paralogs NQM1 and TKL2 only exhibited anaerobic growth on d-xylose after a 7-10 day lag phase. This extended lag phase was eliminated by increasing inoculum concentrations from 0.02 to 0.2 g biomass L-1. Alternatively, a long lag phase could be prevented by sparging low-inoculum-density bioreactor cultures with a CO2/N2-mixture, thus mimicking initial CO2 concentrations in high-inoculum-density, nitrogen-sparged cultures, or by using l-aspartate instead of ammonium as nitrogen source. This study resolves apparent contradictions in the literature on the genetic interventions required for anaerobic growth of CEN.PK-derived strains on d-xylose. Additionally, it indicates the potential relevance of CO2 availability and anaplerotic carboxylation reactions for anaerobic growth of engineered S. cerevisiae strains on d-xylose.

Original languageEnglish
Number of pages15
JournalFEMS Yeast Research
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2018

Fingerprint Dive into the research topics of 'Reassessment of requirements for anaerobic xylose fermentation by engineered, non-evolved Saccharomyces cerevisiae strains'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this