Email updates

Keep up to date with the latest news and content from BMC Biotechnology and BioMed Central.

Open Access Research article

Increased ethanol accumulation from glucose via reduction of ATP level in a recombinant strain of Saccharomyces cerevisiae overexpressing alkaline phosphatase

Marta V Semkiv1, Kostyantyn V Dmytruk1, Charles A Abbas3 and Andriy A Sibirny12*

Author Affiliations

1 Institute of Cell Biology, NAS of Ukraine, Drahomanov Street, 14/16, Lviv 79005, Ukraine

2 University of Rzeszow, Zelwerowicza 4, Rzeszow 35-601, Poland

3 Archer Daniels Midland Co Research Center, 1001 N Brush College Rd, Decatur, IL 62521, USA

For all author emails, please log on.

BMC Biotechnology 2014, 14:42  doi:10.1186/1472-6750-14-42

Published: 15 May 2014

Abstract

Background

The production of ethyl alcohol by fermentation represents the largest scale application of Saccharomyces cerevisiae in industrial biotechnology. Increased worldwide demand for fuel bioethanol is anticipated over the next decade and will exceed 200 billion liters from further expansions. Our working hypothesis was that the drop in ATP level in S. cerevisiae cells during alcoholic fermentation should lead to an increase in ethanol production (yield and productivity) with a greater amount of the utilized glucose converted to ethanol. Our approach to achieve this goal is to decrease the intracellular ATP level via increasing the unspecific alkaline phosphatase activity.

Results

Intact and truncated versions of the S. cerevisiae PHO8 gene coding for vacuolar or cytosolic forms of alkaline phosphatase were fused with the alcohol dehydrogenase gene (ADH1) promoter. The constructed expression cassettes used for transformation vectors also contained the dominant selective marker kanMX4 and S. cerevisiae δ-sequence to facilitate multicopy integration to the genome. Laboratory and industrial ethanol producing strains BY4742 and AS400 overexpressing vacuolar form of alkaline phosphatase were characterized by a slightly lowered intracellular ATP level and biomass accumulation and by an increase in ethanol productivity (13% and 7%) when compared to the parental strains. The strains expressing truncated cytosolic form of alkaline phosphatase showed a prolonged lag-phase, reduced biomass accumulation and a strong defect in ethanol production.

Conclusion

Overexpression of vacuolar alkaline phosphatase leads to an increased ethanol yield in S. cerevisiae.

Keywords:
Baker’s yeasts; Ethanol production; PHO8; Alkaline phosphatase; ATP content; Biomass accumulation