Investigation of degeneration mechanism with a degenerated Clostridium beijerinckii NCIMB 8052

Investigation of degeneration mechanism with a degenerated Clostridium beijerinckii NCIMB 8052
degeneration; clostridium; clostridium beijerinckii
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The great concern on energy crisis is resulting in the demand on alternative energy sources. The microbial bioenergy production is regarded as one of the prominent ways of renewable energy production. Biobutanol is one of the promising biofuels and can be produced by fermentation of several Clostridium species. However, the Clostridium strains loose solvent-producing capability over time. This phenomenon is called “degeneration” and a major problem of the solvent production by the Clostridium strains. In Clostridium acetobutylicum, the genes encoding essential enzymes in the solventogenic pathways are located on a megaplasmid whose loss results in a degenerated phenotype. Clostridium beijerinckii forms degenerate variants even more frequently than C. acetobutylicum, but the mechanism remains unclear. In this study, the degeneration mechanism of C. beijerinckii was investigated with a degenerated C. beijerinckii. To obtain a degenerated cell, C. beijerinckii was grown anaerobically and the culture was transferred to a fresh medium every 24 hours. After 80 days, degenerated C. beijerinckii cells were obtained. Degenerated C. beijerinckii DG1 produced only butyric acid (1~2 g/L) and acetic acid (1~2 g/L) without solvent production whereas non-degenerated C. beijerinckii NCIMB 8052 produced butanol (7~8 g/L) as a main product. The solventogenic gene-related mechanisms of C. beijerinckii degeneration will be investigated in the future study.
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