Engineering S. cerevisiae for Isoprenol Production at Industrial Scale

Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory Background
Isoprenol (3-methyl-3-butene-1-ol) is a valuable biofuel and an important precursor of commodity chemicals. While a synthetic microbial system using the heterologous mevalonate (MVA) pathway has been developed to produce isoprenol in E. coli, there have been no significant examples of isoprenol production reported in S. cerevisiae. Since this budding yeast is already widely used in the biotechnology industry for isoprenoid production due to many advantages (e.g., inherent safety, robustness, good history of large-scale operation), it would be a desirable host for industrial scale isoprenol production.
Technology Overview
Researchers at Berkeley Lab have engineered S. cerevisiae for the biosynthesis of isoprenol.
The process consisted of using both the original MVA pathway as well as the isopentenyl diphosphate (IPP)-bypass pathway for isoprenol production. By identifying and constructing a knockout strain of a key endogenous gene, researchers were able to achieve 380 mg/L of isoprenol titer in a shake flask experiment, a substantial improvement over previous studies in yeast. Additionally, they screened and identified promiscuous phosphatases that improve isoprenol production in S. cerevisiae.
By enabling elevated levels of production of isoprenol via genetic modification of a yeast host cell, this technology ultimately addresses the need to rewire microorganismal metabolisms to achieve high titer, rate, and yield for commercial production.
Further Details:
Isopentenyl diphosphate (IPP)-bypass mevalonate pathwaysfor isopentenol production
Stage of Development
Proven principle.

Improves the isoprenol titer in the host_Saccharomyces cerevisiae_
Creates a strong production system for isoprenol production at industrial scale


Commodity chemicals

Available for licensing or collaborative research.

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