Amino acid catabolism-directed biofuel production in Clostridium sticklandii: An insight into model-driven systems engineering.
Biotechnol Rep (Amst). 2017 Dec;16:32-43
Authors: Sangavai C, Chellapandi P
Model-driven systems engineering has been more fascinating process for the microbial production of biofuel and bio-refineries in chemical and pharmaceutical industries. Genome-scale modeling and simulations have been guided for metabolic engineering of Clostridium species for the production of organic solvents and organic acids. Among them, Clostridium sticklandii is one of the potential organisms to be exploited as a microbial cell factory for biofuel production. It is a hyper-ammonia producing bacterium and is able to catabolize amino acids as important carbon and energy sources via Stickland reactions and the development of the specific pathways. Current genomic and metabolic aspects of this bacterium are comprehensively reviewed herein, which provided information for learning about protein catabolism-directed biofuel production. It has a metabolic potential to drive energy and direct solventogenesis as well as acidogenesis from protein catabolism. It produces by-products such as ethanol, acetate, n-butanol, n-butyrate and hydrogen from amino acid catabolism. Model-driven systems engineering of this organism would improve the performance of the industrial sectors and enhance the industrial economy by using protein-based waste in environment-friendly ways.
PMID: 29167757 [PubMed]
Xylose induces cellulase production in Thermoascus aurantiacus.
Biotechnol Biofuels. 2017;10:271
Authors: Schuerg T, Prahl JP, Gabriel R, Harth S, Tachea F, Chen CS, Miller M, Masson F, He Q, Brown S, Mirshiaghi M, Liang L, Tom LM, Tanjore D, Sun N, Pray TR, Singer SW
Background: Lignocellulosic biomass is an important resource for renewable production of biofuels and bioproducts. Enzymes that deconstruct this biomass are critical for the viability of biomass-based biofuel production processes. Current commercial enzyme mixtures have limited thermotolerance. Thermophilic fungi may provide enzyme mixtures with greater thermal stability leading to more robust processes. Understanding the induction of biomass-deconstructing enzymes in thermophilic fungi will provide the foundation for strategies to construct hyper-production strains.
Results: Induction of cellulases using xylan was demonstrated during cultivation of the thermophilic fungus Thermoascus aurantiacus. Simulated fed-batch conditions with xylose induced comparable levels of cellulases. These fed-batch conditions were adapted to produce enzymes in 2 and 19 L bioreactors using xylose and xylose-rich hydrolysate from dilute acid pretreatment of corn stover. Enzymes from T. aurantiacus that were produced in the xylose-fed bioreactor demonstrated comparable performance in the saccharification of deacetylated, dilute acid-pretreated corn stover when compared to a commercial enzyme mixture at 50 °C. The T. aurantiacus enzymes retained this activity at of 60 °C while the commercial enzyme mixture was largely inactivated.
Conclusions: Xylose induces both cellulase and xylanase production in T. aurantiacus and was used to produce enzymes at up to the 19 L bioreactor scale. The demonstration of induction by xylose-rich hydrolysate and saccharification of deacetylated, dilute acid-pretreated corn stover suggests a scenario to couple biomass pretreatment with onsite enzyme production in a biorefinery. This work further demonstrates the potential for T. aurantiacus as a thermophilic platform for cellulase development.
PMID: 29167701 [PubMed]
Hyper-Transcranial Alternating Current Stimulation: Experimental Manipulation of Inter-Brain Synchrony.
Front Hum Neurosci. 2017;11:539
Authors: Szymanski C, Müller V, Brick TR, von Oertzen T, Lindenberger U
We walk together, we watch together, we win together: Interpersonally coordinated actions are omnipresent in everyday life, yet the associated neural mechanisms are not well understood. Available evidence suggests that the synchronization of oscillatory activity across brains may provide a mechanism for the temporal alignment of actions between two or more individuals. In an attempt to provide a direct test of this hypothesis, we applied transcranial alternating current stimulation simultaneously to two individuals (hyper-tACS) who were asked to drum in synchrony at a set pace. Thirty-eight female-female dyads performed the dyadic drumming in the course of 3 weeks under three different hyper-tACS stimulation conditions: same-phase-same-frequency; different-phase-different-frequency; sham. Based on available evidence and theoretical considerations, stimulation was applied over right frontal and parietal sites in the theta frequency range. We predicted that same-phase-same-frequency stimulation would improve interpersonal action coordination, expressed as the degree of synchrony in dyadic drumming, relative to the other two conditions. Contrary to expectations, both the same-phase-same-frequency and the different-phase-different-frequency conditions were associated with greater dyadic drumming asynchrony relative to the sham condition. No influence of hyper-tACS on behavioral performance was seen when participants were asked to drum separately in synchrony to a metronome. Individual and dyad preferred drumming tempo was also unaffected by hyper-tACS. We discuss limitations of the present version of the hyper-tACS paradigm, and suggest avenues for future research.
PMID: 29167638 [PubMed]