The PetroBrick: Strong Constitutive Expression of ADC and AAR in pSB1C3
- This part encodes both the BBa_K590032 Acyl-ACP Reductase (AAR) and the BBa_K590031 Aldehyde Decarbonylase (ADC) from Synechococcus elongatus PCC7942 behind a strong constituitive expression cassette, BBa_K314100 in the pSB1C3 vector. Transforming this part into E. coli will result in the production of alkanes, the primary component of diesel, without the need for any inducing agents. More information on the optimal conditions for alkane production as well as detailed protocols for growth, production, and analysis of alkanes can be found on the 2011 University of Washington iGEM Team Wiki page.
Usage and Biology
When they are expressed together, AAR and ADC produce alkanes from the cell's fatty acid biosynthetic pathway. Alkane production is enhanced when growing expression strains using the growth conditions developed by the 2011 University of Washington iGEM Team. Seen bottom left, the green GCMS chromatagram trace (corresponding to cells expressing both AAR and ADC) has significant new peaks corresponding to the C13 (8.2min) and C15 (9.2min) alkanes, as well as a peak at 10.2 minutes that contains both the C14 alcohol and the C17 alkene. The fact that the C17 alkene peak overlaps with the C14 alcohol peak makes exact quantification of C17 akene yields impossible, but we have sufficient evidence to determine that both molecules are present in the 10.2 minute peak (the earlier section of the peak has an MS spectra consistent with the C16 alcohol, and the later section is consistent with the C17 alkene). The C13 and C15 alkane peaks showed MS spectra highly consistent with C13 and C15 alkane reference spectra(for these spectra, as well as the C17 alkene spectrum, refer to the 2011 UW iGEM team's Spectra Page). In addition, both alkane molecules eluted off of the GC at the same time as C13 and C15 alkane standards, further increasing confidence that the 8.2 min and 9.2 min peaks do correspond to the C13 and C15 alkanes. Odd chain length alkane production is what is expected from our system, as ADC removes a carbonyl group from even chain length aldehydes produced by AAR, yielding an odd chain length alkane. Seen bottom right, alkane production is quantified from GCMS data. At this stage we were able to produce alkanes up to 160 mg/mL. Using the PetroBrick, we can turn simple sugars into diesel, a fuel fully compatible with modern infrastructure. We have confirmed that majority of alkanes come from sugar, and not the cell biomass used to inoculate the high density production culture by performing tests in our standard media with and without a carbon source. This resulted in trace alkane yields (4.7 mg/L) without sugar (most likely some alkanes were generated from inoculated cell biomass alone), but high alkane yields (240mg/L) were achieved when glucose was added to the minimal media. In addition, we have shown that glycerol can act as a carbon source for alkane production (56.3 mg/L).
Sequence and Features
- 10COMPATIBLE WITH RFC
- 12INCOMPATIBLE WITH RFCIllegal NheI site found at 470
Illegal NheI site found at 493
- 21INCOMPATIBLE WITH RFCIllegal XhoI site found at 1254
Illegal XhoI site found at 2366
- 23COMPATIBLE WITH RFC
- 25INCOMPATIBLE WITH RFCIllegal NgoMIV site found at 126
- 1000COMPATIBLE WITH RFC