(41c) Modular Pathway Design for Combinatorial Biosynthesis of Designer Bioesters

Layton, D. S., University of Tennessee
Trinh, C. T., University of Tennessee

Sensation profiles are observed all around us which are composed of many chemicals such as esters.  We can mimic these profiles in everyday items for their uses in foods, beverages, cosmetics, solvents, and perfumes. Here, we present an organic way to derive these products via a combinatorial biosynthesis in Escherichia coli. The bioester-producing pathway is composed of two different modules for precursor formation of alcohols and acyl-CoAs that are then condensed by an alcohol acyltransferase to produce bioesters. We employ metabolic engineering and synthetic biology principles and techniques to design distinct bioester-producing pathways that can be coupled with a universal optimal modular cell in a plug-and-play design for enhanced bioester production. We will demonstrate the combinatorial production of a bioester library derived from short-chain alcohols and acyl CoAs that can be used for flavorings, fragrances, and solvents.