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    Accumulation of two benzoyl esters in Aspergillus ustus after feeding with alcohols was reported 30 years ago. To the best of our knowledge, the biosynthesis for these esters has not been elucidated prior to this study. Here, we demonstrate that these compounds are artifical products of the phenethyl polyketide ustethylin A biosynthestic pathway. In addition, four aditional benzoyl esters with different methylation levels were also isolated and identified as shunt products. Feeding experiments provided evidence that the enzyme-bound polyketide acyl intermediates are hijacked by externally fed MeOH or EtOH, leading to the formation of the benzoyl esters.


    Liujuan Zheng, Shu-Ming Li. Benzoyl ester formation in Aspergillus ustus by hijacking the polyketide acyl intermediates with alcohols. Archives of microbiology. 2021 May;203(4):1795-1800

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    PMID: 33483795

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