Open Access Highly Accessed Open Badges Research article

Use of the λ Red-recombineering method for genetic engineering of Pantoea ananatis

Joanna I Katashkina1, Yoshihiko Hara2, Lyubov I Golubeva1*, Irina G Andreeva1, Tatiana M Kuvaeva1 and Sergey V Mashko1

Author Affiliations

1 Closed Joint-Stock Company "Ajinomoto-Genetika Research Institute", 1st Dorozhny Pr 1, Moscow 117545, Russia

2 Fermentation and Biotechnology Laboratories, Ajinomoto Co, Inc, 1-1 Suzuki-cho, Kawasaki-ku, Kawasaki 210-8681, Japan

For all author emails, please log on.

BMC Molecular Biology 2009, 10:34  doi:10.1186/1471-2199-10-34

Published: 23 April 2009



Pantoea ananatis, a member of the Enterobacteriacea family, is a new and promising subject for biotechnological research. Over recent years, impressive progress in its application to L-glutamate production has been achieved. Nevertheless, genetic and biotechnological studies of Pantoea ananatis have been impeded because of the absence of genetic tools for rapid construction of direct mutations in this bacterium. The λ Red-recombineering technique previously developed in E. coli and used for gene inactivation in several other bacteria is a high-performance tool for rapid construction of precise genome modifications.


In this study, the expression of λ Red genes in P. ananatis was found to be highly toxic. A screening was performed to select mutants of P. ananatis that were resistant to the toxic affects of λ Red. A mutant strain, SC17(0) was identified that grew well under conditions of simultaneous expression of λ gam, bet, and exo genes. Using this strain, procedures for fast introduction of multiple rearrangements to the Pantoea ananatis genome based on the λ Red-dependent integration of the PCR-generated DNA fragments with as short as 40 bp flanking homologies have been demonstrated.


The λ Red-recombineering technology was successfully used for rapid generation of chromosomal modifications in the specially selected P. ananatis recipient strain. The procedure of electro-transformation with chromosomal DNA has been developed for transfer of the marked mutation between different P. ananatis strains. Combination of these techniques with λ Int/Xis-dependent excision of selective markers significantly accelerates basic research and construction of producing strains.