Polyhydroxyalkanoates (PHAs) provide biodegradable and bio-based alternatives to conventional plastics. Incorporation of 2-hydroxy acid monomers into polymer, in addition to 3-hydroxy acids, offers possibility to tailor the polymer properties. In this study, poly(D-lactic acid) (PDLA) and copolymer P(LA-3HB) were produced and characterized for the first time in the yeast Saccharomyces cerevisiae. Expression of engineered PHA synthase PhaC1437Ps6-19, propionyl-CoA transferase Pct540Cp, acetyl-CoA acetyltransferase PhaA, and acetoacetyl-CoA reductase PhaB1 resulted in accumulation of 3.6% P(LA-3HB) and expression of engineered enzymes PhaC1Pre and PctMe resulted in accumulation of 0.73% PDLA of the cell dry weight (CDW). According to NMR, P(LA-3HB) contained D-lactic acid repeating sequences. For reference, expression of PhaA, PhaB1, and PHA synthase PhaC1 resulted in accumulation 11% poly(hydroxybutyrate) (PHB) of the CDW. Weight average molecular weights of these polymers were comparable to similar polymers produced by bacterial strains, 24.6, 6.3, and 1 130 kDa for P(LA-3HB), PDLA, and PHB, respectively. The results suggest that yeast, as a robust and acid tolerant industrial production organism, could be suitable for production of 2-hydroxy acid containing PHAs from sugars or from 2-hydroxy acid containing raw materials. Moreover, the wide substrate specificity of PHA synthase enzymes employed increases the possibilities for modifying copolymer properties in yeast in the future.
|Journal||Journal of industrial microbiology and biotechnology|
|Publication status||Published - 1 Jul 2021|
|MoE publication type||A1 Journal article-refereed|