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Nowadays, bacterial cellulose has played more and more important role as new biological material for food industry and medical and industrial products based on its unique properties. However, it is still a difficult task to improve the production of bacterial cellulose, especially a large number of byproducts are produced in the metabolic biosynthesis processes. To improve bacterial cellulose production, ethanol and sodium citrate are added into the medium during the fermentation, and the activities of key enzymes and concentration of extracellular metabolites are measured to assess the changes of the metabolic flux of the hexose monophosphate pathway (HMP), the Embden-Meyerhof-Parnas pathway (EMP), and the tricarboxylic acid cycle (TCA). Our results indicate that ethanol functions as energy source for ATP generation at the early stage of the fermentation in the HMP pathway and the supplementation of ethanol significantly reduces glycerol generation (a major byproduct). While in the EMP pathway, sodium citrate plays a key role, and its supplementation results in the byproducts (mainly acetic acid and pyruvic acid) entering the gluconeogenesis pathway for cellulose synthesis. Furthermore, by adding ethanol and sodium citrate, the main byproduct citric acid in the TCA cycle is also reduced significantly. It is concluded that bacterial cellulose production can be improved by increasing energy metabolism and reducing the formation of metabolic byproducts through the metabolic regulations of the bypasses.


Yuanjing Li, Chunjie Tian, Hua Tian, Jiliang Zhang, Xin He, Wenxiang Ping, Hong Lei. Improvement of bacterial cellulose production by manipulating the metabolic pathways in which ethanol and sodium citrate involved. Applied microbiology and biotechnology. 2012 Dec;96(6):1479-87

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PMID: 22782249

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