Novel quantitative insights into carbon sources for synthesis of poly hydroxybutyrate in Synechocystis PCC 6803
Many freshwater cyanobacteria accumulate polyhydroxybutyrate (PHB) under nitrogen or phosphorus deprivation. While prior literature has shed lights on transcriptomic and metabolomic changes in the model cyanobacterium Synechocystis PCC 6803 cells, the quantitative contributions of the newly fixed carbon following nitrogen deprivation or the externally added acetate to PHB synthesis are not clear. Similarly, it is not clear how photomixotrophy affects precursor contributions. In this study, we show that (i) the pre-growth mode (photoautotrophic or photomixotrophic), while significantly impacting glycogen levels, does not have any significant effect on PHB levels, (ii) the carbon fixed following nitrogen deprivation contributes 26% of C for PHB synthesis in photoautotrophically pre-grown cells and its contribution to the PHB synthesis goes down with the addition of acetate at the resuspension phase or with photomixotrophic pre-growth, (iii) the acetate added at the start of nitrogen deprivation, doubles the intracellular PHB levels and contributes 44–48% to PHB synthesis and this value is not greatly affected by how the cells were pre-grown. Indirectly, the labeling studies also show that the intracellular C recycling is the most important source of precursors for PHB synthesis, contributing about 74–87% of the C for PHB synthesis in the absence of acetate. The addition of acetate significantly reduces its contribution. In photoautotrophic pre-growth followed by acetate addition under nitrogen starvation, the contribution of intracellular C reduces to about 34%. Thus, our study provides several novel quantitative insights on how prior nutritional status affects the precursor contributions for PHB synthesis.
Publisher URL: https://link.springer.com/article/10.1007/s11120-017-0464-x
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