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Pseudomonas putida KT2440 is becoming a new robust metabolic chassis for biotechnological applications, due to its metabolic versatility, low nutritional requirements and biosafety status. We have previously engineered P. putida KT2440 to be an efficient propionate producer from L-threonine, although the internal enzymes converting propionyl-CoA to propionate are not clear. In this study, we thoroughly investigated 13 genes annotated as potential thioesterases in the KT2440 mutant. One thioesterase encoded by locus tag PP_4975 was verified to be the major contributor to propionate production in vivo. Deletion of PP_4975 significantly decreased propionate production, whereas the performance was fully restored by gene complement. Compared with thioesterase HiYciA from Haemophilus influenza, thioesterase PP_4975 showed a faster substrate conversion rate in vitro. Thus, this study expands our knowledge on acyl-CoA thioesterases in P. putida KT2440 and may also reveal a new target for further engineering the strain to improve propionate production performance. © 2021 The Authors. Microbial Biotechnology published by Society for Applied Microbiology and John Wiley & Sons Ltd.


Chao Ma, Ya'nan Shi, Qingxuan Mu, Rongshan Li, Yanfen Xue, Bo Yu. Unravelling the thioesterases responsible for propionate formation in engineered Pseudomonas putida KT2440. Microbial biotechnology. 2021 May;14(3):1237-1242

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PMID: 33739583

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