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  1. Noreen N, Hooi WY, Baradaran A, Rosfarizan M, Sieo CC, Rosli MI, et al.
    Microb Cell Fact, 2011;10:28.
    PMID: 21518457 DOI: 10.1186/1475-2859-10-28
    Many plasmid-harbouring strains of Lactococcus lactis have been isolated from milk and other sources. Plasmids of Lactococcus have been shown to harbour antibiotic resistance genes and those that express some important proteins. The generally regarded as safe (GRAS) status of L. lactis also makes it an attractive host for the production of proteins that are beneficial in numerous applications such as the production of biopharmaceutical and nutraceutical. In the present work, strains of L. lactis were isolated from cow's milk, plasmids were isolated and characterised and one of the strains was identified as a potential new lactococcal host for the expression of heterologous proteins.
  2. Ramli AN, Mahadi NM, Rabu A, Murad AM, Bakar FD, Illias RM
    Microb Cell Fact, 2011;10:94.
    PMID: 22050784 DOI: 10.1186/1475-2859-10-94
    Cold-adapted enzymes are proteins produced by psychrophilic organisms that display a high catalytic efficiency at extremely low temperatures. Chitin consists of the insoluble homopolysaccharide β-(1, 4)-linked N-acetylglucosamine, which is the second most abundant biopolymer found in nature. Chitinases (EC 3.2.1.14) play an important role in chitin recycling in nature. Biodegradation of chitin by the action of cold-adapted chitinases offers significant advantages in industrial applications such as the treatment of chitin-rich waste at low temperatures, the biocontrol of phytopathogens in cold environments and the biocontrol of microbial spoilage of refrigerated food.
  3. Abusham RA, Rahman RN, Salleh AB, Basri M
    Microb Cell Fact, 2009 Apr 09;8:20.
    PMID: 19356254 DOI: 10.1186/1475-2859-8-20
    BACKGROUND: Many researchers have reported on the optimization of protease production; nevertheless, only a few have reported on the optimization of the production of organic solvent-tolerant proteases. Ironically, none has reported on thermostable organic solvent-tolerant protease to date. The aim of this study was to isolate the thermostable organic solvent-tolerant protease and identify the culture conditions which support its production. The bacteria of genus Bacillus are active producers of extra-cellular proteases, and the thermostability of enzyme production by Bacillus species has been well-studied by a number of researchers. In the present study, the Bacillus subtilis strain Rand was isolated from the contaminated soil found in Port Dickson, Malaysia.

    RESULTS: A thermostable organic solvent-tolerant protease producer had been identified as Bacillus subtilis strain Rand, based on the 16S rRNA analysis conducted, as well as the morphological characteristics and biochemical properties. The production of the thermostable organic solvent-tolerant protease was optimized by varying various physical culture conditions. Inoculation with 5.0% (v/v) of (AB600 = 0.5) inoculum size, in a culture medium (pH 7.0) and incubated for 24 h at 37 degrees C with 200 rpm shaking, was the best culture condition which resulted in the maximum growth and production of protease (444.7 U/ml; 4042.4 U/mg). The Rand protease was not only stable in the presence of organic solvents, but it also exhibited a higher activity than in the absence of organic solvent, except for pyridine which inhibited the protease activity. The enzyme retained 100, 99 and 80% of its initial activity, after the heat treatment for 30 min at 50, 55, and 60 degrees C, respectively.

    CONCLUSION: Strain Rand has been found to be able to secrete extra-cellular thermostable organic solvent-tolerant protease into the culture medium. The protease exhibited a remarkable stability towards temperature and organic solvent. This unique property makes it attractive and useful to be used in industrial applications.

  4. Jalilsood T, Baradaran A, Song AA, Foo HL, Mustafa S, Saad WZ, et al.
    Microb Cell Fact, 2015;14:96.
    PMID: 26150120 DOI: 10.1186/s12934-015-0283-8
    Bacterial biofilms are a preferred mode of growth for many types of microorganisms in their natural environments. The ability of pathogens to integrate within a biofilm is pivotal to their survival. The possibility of biofilm formation in Lactobacillus communities is also important in various industrial and medical settings. Lactobacilli can eliminate the colonization of different pathogenic microorganisms. Alternatively, new opportunities are now arising with the rapidly expanding potential of lactic acid bacteria biofilms as bio-control agents against food-borne pathogens.
  5. Tai HF, Foo HL, Abdul Rahim R, Loh TC, Abdullah MP, Yoshinobu K
    Microb Cell Fact, 2015;14:89.
    PMID: 26077560 DOI: 10.1186/s12934-015-0280-y
    Bacteriocin-producing Lactic acid bacteria (LAB) have vast applications in human and animal health, as well as in food industry. The structural, immunity, regulatory, export and modification genes are required for effective bacteriocin biosynthesis. Variations in gene sequence, composition and organisation will affect the antimicrobial spectrum of bacteriocin greatly. Lactobacillus plantarum I-UL4 is a novel multiple bacteriocin producer that harbours both plw and plnEF structural genes simultaneous which has not been reported elsewhere. Therefore, molecular characterisation of bacteriocin genes that harboured in L. plantarum I-UL4 was conducted in this study.
  6. Song AA, In LLA, Lim SHE, Rahim RA
    Microb Cell Fact, 2017 04 04;16(1):55.
    PMID: 28376880 DOI: 10.1186/s12934-017-0669-x
    Lactococcus lactis has progressed a long way since its discovery and initial use in dairy product fermentation, to its present biotechnological applications in genetic engineering for the production of various recombinant proteins and metabolites that transcends the heterologous species barrier. Key desirable features of this gram-positive lactic acid non-colonizing gut bacteria include its generally recognized as safe (GRAS) status, probiotic properties, the absence of inclusion bodies and endotoxins, surface display and extracellular secretion technology, and a diverse selection of cloning and inducible expression vectors. This have made L. lactis a desirable and promising host on par with other well established model bacterial or yeast systems such as Escherichia coli, Saccharomyces [corrected] cerevisiae and Bacillus subtilis. In this article, we review recent technological advancements, challenges, future prospects and current diversified examples on the use of L. lactis as a microbial cell factory. Additionally, we will also highlight latest medical-based applications involving whole-cell L. lactis as a live delivery vector for the administration of therapeutics against both communicable and non-communicable diseases.
  7. Yap HY, Muria-Gonzalez MJ, Kong BH, Stubbs KA, Tan CS, Ng ST, et al.
    Microb Cell Fact, 2017 Jun 12;16(1):103.
    PMID: 28606152 DOI: 10.1186/s12934-017-0713-x
    BACKGROUND: Genome mining facilitated by heterologous systems is an emerging approach to access the chemical diversity encoded in basidiomycete genomes. In this study, three sesquiterpene synthase genes, GME3634, GME3638, and GME9210, which were highly expressed in the sclerotium of the medicinal mushroom Lignosus rhinocerotis, were cloned and heterologously expressed in a yeast system.

    RESULTS: Metabolite profile analysis of the yeast culture extracts by GC-MS showed the production of several sesquiterpene alcohols (C15H26O), including cadinols and germacrene D-4-ol as major products. Other detected sesquiterpenes include selina-6-en-4-ol, β-elemene, β-cubebene, and cedrene. Two purified major compounds namely (+)-torreyol and α-cadinol synthesised by GME3638 and GME3634 respectively, are stereoisomers and their chemical structures were confirmed by 1H and 13C NMR. Phylogenetic analysis revealed that GME3638 and GME3634 are a pair of orthologues, and are grouped together with terpene synthases that synthesise cadinenes and related sesquiterpenes. (+)-Torreyol and α-cadinol were tested against a panel of human cancer cell lines and the latter was found to exhibit selective potent cytotoxicity in breast adenocarcinoma cells (MCF7) with IC50 value of 3.5 ± 0.58 μg/ml while α-cadinol is less active (IC50 = 18.0 ± 3.27 μg/ml).

    CONCLUSIONS: This demonstrates that yeast-based genome mining, guided by transcriptomics, is a promising approach for uncovering bioactive compounds from medicinal mushrooms.

  8. Wayah SB, Philip K
    Microb Cell Fact, 2018 Aug 13;17(1):125.
    PMID: 30103750 DOI: 10.1186/s12934-018-0972-1
    BACKGROUND: Emergence of antibiotic resistance and growing consumer trend towards foods containing biopreservatives stimulated the search for alternative antimicrobials. This research is aimed at characterizing, investigating the mechanism of action, scale up optimization and evaluating the biopreservative potential of a bacteriocin from Lactobacillus fermentum.

    RESULTS: Fermencin SA715 is a novel, broad-spectrum, non-pore-forming and cell wall-associated bacteriocin isolated from L. fermentum GA715 of goat milk origin. A combination of hydrophobic interaction chromatography, solid-phase extraction and reversed-phase HPLC was necessary for purification of the bacteriocin to homogeneity. It has a molecular weight of 1792.537 Da as revealed by MALDI-TOF mass spectrometry. Fermencin SA715 is potent at micromolar concentration, possesses high thermal and pH stability and inactivated by proteolytic enzymes thereby revealing its proteinaceous nature. Biomass accumulation and production of fermencin SA715 was optimum in a newly synthesized growth medium. Fermencin SA715 did not occur in the absence of manganese(II) sulphate. Tween 80, ascorbic acid, sodium citrate and magnesium sulphate enhanced the production of fermencin SA715. Sucrose is the preferred carbon source for growth and bacteriocin production. Sodium chloride concentration higher than 1% suppressed growth and production of fermencin SA715. Optimum bacteriocin production occurred at 37 °C and pH 6-7. Scale up of fermencin SA715 production involved batch fermentation in a bioreactor at a constant pH of 6.5 which resulted in enhanced production. Fermencin SA715 doubled the shelf life and improved the microbiological safety of fresh banana. Bacteriocin application followed by refrigeration tripled the shell life of banana.

    CONCLUSIONS: This study reveals the huge potential of fermencin SA715 as a future biopreservative for bananas and reveals other interesting characteristics which can be exploited in the preservation of other foods. Furthermore insights on the factors influencing the production of fermencin SA715 have been revealed and optimized condition for its production has been established facilitating future commercial production.

  9. See-Too WS, Convey P, Pearce DA, Chan KG
    Microb Cell Fact, 2018 Nov 17;17(1):179.
    PMID: 30445965 DOI: 10.1186/s12934-018-1024-6
    BACKGROUND: N-acylhomoserine lactones (AHLs) are well-studied signalling molecules produced by some Gram-negative Proteobacteria for bacterial cell-to-cell communication or quorum sensing. We have previously demonstrated the degradation of AHLs by an Antarctic bacterium, Planococcus versutus L10.15T, at low temperature through the production of an AHL lactonase. In this study, we cloned the AHL lactonase gene and characterized the purified novel enzyme.

    RESULTS: Rapid resolution liquid chromatography analysis indicated that purified AidP possesses high AHL-degrading activity on unsubstituted, and 3-oxo substituted homoserine lactones. Liquid chromatography-mass spectrometry analysis confirmed that AidP functions as an AHL lactonase that hydrolyzes the ester bond of the homoserine lactone ring of AHLs. Multiple sequence alignment analysis and phylogenetic analysis suggested that the aidP gene encodes a novel AHL lactonase enzyme. The amino acid composition analysis of aidP and the homologous genes suggested that it might be a cold-adapted enzyme, however, the optimum temperature is 28 °C, even though the thermal stability is low (reduced drastically above 32 °C). Branch-site analysis of several aidP genes of Planococcus sp. branch on the phylogenetic trees also showed evidence of episodic positive selection of the gene in cold environments. Furthermore, we demonstrated the effects of covalent and ionic bonding, showing that Zn2+ is important for activity of AidP in vivo. The pectinolytic inhibition assay confirmed that this enzyme attenuated the pathogenicity of the plant pathogen Pectobacterium carotovorum in Chinese cabbage.

    CONCLUSION: We demonstrated that AidP is effective in attenuating the pathogenicity of P. carotovorum, a plant pathogen that causes soft-rot disease. This anti-quorum sensing agent is an enzyme with low thermal stability that degrades the bacterial signalling molecules (AHLs) that are produced by many pathogens. Since the enzyme is most active below human body temperature (below 28 °C), and lose its activity drastically above 32 °C, the results of a pectinolytic inhibition assay using Chinese cabbage indicated the potential of this anti-quorum sensing agent to be safely applied in the field trials.

  10. Jacob PJ, Masarudin MJ, Hussein MZ, Rahim RA
    Microb Cell Fact, 2017 Oct 11;16(1):175.
    PMID: 29020992 DOI: 10.1186/s12934-017-0789-3
    BACKGROUND: Iron based ferromagnetic nanoparticles (IONP) have found a wide range of application in microelectronics, chemotherapeutic cell targeting, and as contrast enhancers in MRI. As such, the design of well-defined monodisperse IONPs is crucial to ensure effectiveness in these applications. Although these nanostructures are currently manufactured using chemical and physical processes, these methods are not environmentally conducive and weigh heavily on energy and outlays. Certain microorganisms have the innate ability to reduce metallic ions in aqueous solution and generate nano-sized IONP's with narrow size distribution. Harnessing this potential is a way forward in constructing microbial nanofactories, capable of churning out high yields of well-defined IONP's with physico-chemical characteristics on par with the synthetically produced ones.

    RESULTS: In this work, we report the molecular characterization of an actinomycetes, isolated from tropical freshwater wetlands sediments, that demonstrated rapid aerobic extracellular reduction of ferric ions to generate iron based nanoparticles. Characterization of these nanoparticles was carried out using Field Emission Scanning Electron Microscope with energy dispersive X-ray spectroscopy (FESEM-EDX), Field Emission Transmission Electron Microscope (FETEM), Ultraviolet-Visible (UV-Vis) Spectrophotometer, dynamic light scattering (DLS) and Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy (FTIR). This process was carried out at room temperature and humidity and under aerobic conditions and could be developed as an environmental friendly, cost effective bioprocess for the production of IONP's.

    CONCLUSION: While it is undeniable that iron reducing microorganisms confer a largely untapped resource as potent nanofactories, these bioprocesses are largely anaerobic and hampered by the low reaction rates, highly stringent microbial cultural conditions and polydispersed nanostructures. In this work, the novel isolate demonstrated rapid, aerobic reduction of ferric ions in its extracellular matrix, resulting in IONPs of relatively narrow size distribution which are easily extracted and purified without the need for convoluted procedures. It is therefore hoped that this isolate could be potentially developed as an effective nanofactory in the future.

  11. Habib S, Ahmad SA, Johari WLW, Shukor MYA, Alias SA, Khalil KA, et al.
    Microb Cell Fact, 2018 Mar 17;17(1):44.
    PMID: 29549881 DOI: 10.1186/s12934-018-0889-8
    BACKGROUND: Biodegradation of hydrocarbons in Antarctic soil has been reported to be achieved through the utilisation of indigenous cold-adapted microorganisms. Although numerous bacteria isolated from hydrocarbon-contaminated sites in Antarctica were able to demonstrate promising outcomes in utilising hydrocarbon components as their energy source, reports on the utilisation of hydrocarbons by strains isolated from pristine Antarctic soil are scarce. In the present work, two psychrotolerant strains isolated from Antarctic pristine soil with the competency to utilise diesel fuel as the sole carbon source were identified and optimised through conventional and response surface method.

    RESULTS: Two potent hydrocarbon-degraders (ADL15 and ADL36) were identified via partial 16S rRNA gene sequence analysis, and revealed to be closely related to the genus Pseudomonas and Rhodococcus sp., respectively. Factors affecting diesel degradation such as temperature, hydrocarbon concentration, pH and salt tolerance were studied. Although strain ADL36 was able to withstand a higher concentration of diesel than strain ADL15, both strains showed similar optimal condition for the cell's growth at pH 7.0 and 1.0% (w/v) NaCl at the conventional 'one-factor-at-a-time' level. Both strains were observed to be psychrotrophs with optimal temperatures of 20 °C. Qualitative and quantitative analysis were performed with a gas chromatograph equipped with a flame ionisation detector to measure the reduction of n-alkane components in diesel. In the pre-screening medium, strain ADL36 showed 83.75% of n-dodecane mineralisation while the reduction of n-dodecane by strain ADL15 was merely at 22.39%. The optimised condition for n-dodecane mineralisation predicted through response surface methodology enhanced the reduction of n-dodecane to 99.89 and 38.32% for strain ADL36 and strain ADL15, respectively.

    CONCLUSIONS: Strain ADL36 proves to be a better candidate for bioaugmentation operations on sites contaminated with aliphatic hydrocarbons especially in the Antarctic and other cold regions. The results obtained throughout strongly supports the use of RSM for medium optimisation.

  12. Lim YH, Foo HL, Loh TC, Mohamad R, Abdul Rahim R, Idrus Z
    Microb Cell Fact, 2019 Jul 22;18(1):125.
    PMID: 31331395 DOI: 10.1186/s12934-019-1173-2
    BACKGROUND: Threonine is an essential amino acid that is extensively used in livestock industry as feed supplement due to its pronounced effect in improving the growth performance of animals. Application of genetically engineered bacteria for amino acid production has its share of controversies after eosinophils myalgia syndrome outbreak in 1980s. This has urged for continuous search for a food grade producer as a safer alternative for industrial amino acid production. Lactic acid bacteria (LAB) appear as an exceptional candidate owing to their non-pathogenic nature and reputation of Generally Recognized as Safe (GRAS) status. Recently, we have identified a LAB, Pediococcus pentosaceus TL-3, isolated from Malaysian food as a potential threonine producer. Thus, the objective of this study was to enhance the threonine production by P. pentosaceus TL-3 via optimized medium developed by using Plackett-Burman design (PBD) and central composite design (CCD).

    RESULTS: Molasses, meat extract, (NH4)2SO4, and MnSO4 were identified as the main medium components for threonine production by P. pentosaceus TL-3. The optimum concentration of molasses, meat extract, (NH4)2SO4 and MnSO4 were found to be 30.79 g/L, 25.30 g/L, 8.59 g/L, and 0.098 g/L respectively based on model obtained in CCD with a predicted net threonine production of 123.07 mg/L. The net threonine production by P. pentosaceus TL-3 in the optimized medium was enhanced approximately 2 folds compared to the control.

    CONCLUSIONS: This study has revealed the potential of P. pentosaceus TL-3 as a safer alternative to produce threonine. Additionally, the current study has identified the key medium components affecting the production of threonine by P. pentosaceus TL-3, followed by optimization of their concentrations by means of statistical approach. The findings of this study could act as a guideline for the future exploration of amino acid production by LAB.

  13. Wu S, Gu W, Huang A, Li Y, Kumar M, Lim PE, et al.
    Microb Cell Fact, 2019 Sep 23;18(1):161.
    PMID: 31547820 DOI: 10.1186/s12934-019-1214-x
    BACKGROUND: Numerous studies have shown that stress induction and genetic engineering can effectively increase lipid accumulation, but lead to a decrease of growth in the majority of microalgae. We previously found that elevated CO2 concentration increased lipid productivity as well as growth in Phaeodactylum tricornutum, along with an enhancement of the oxidative pentose phosphate pathway (OPPP) activity. The purpose of this work directed toward the verification of the critical role of glucose-6-phosphate dehydrogenase (G6PDH), the rate-limiting enzyme in the OPPP, in lipid accumulation in P. tricornutum and its simultaneous rapid growth rate under high-CO2 (0.15%) cultivation.

    RESULTS: In this study, G6PDH was identified as a target for algal strain improvement, wherein G6PDH gene was successfully overexpressed and antisense knockdown in P. tricornutum, and systematic comparisons of the photosynthesis performance, algal growth, lipid content, fatty acid profiles, NADPH production, G6PDH activity and transcriptional abundance were performed. The results showed that, due to the enhanced G6PDH activity, transcriptional abundance and NAPDH production, overexpression of G6PDH accompanied by high-CO2 cultivation resulted in a much higher of both lipid content and growth in P. tricornutum, while knockdown of G6PDH greatly decreased algal growth as well as lipid accumulation. In addition, the total proportions of saturated and unsaturated fatty acid, especially the polyunsaturated fatty acid eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA; C20:5, n-3), were highly increased in high-CO2 cultivated G6PDH overexpressed strains.

    CONCLUSIONS: The successful of overexpression and antisense knockdown of G6PDH well demonstrated the positive influence of G6PDH on algal growth and lipid accumulation in P. tricornutum. The improvement of algal growth, lipid content as well as polyunsaturated fatty acids in high-CO2 cultivated G6PDH overexpressed P. tricornutum suggested this G6PDH overexpression-high CO2 cultivation pattern provides an efficient and economical route for algal strain improvement to develop algal-based biodiesel production.

  14. Mohd Yusof H, Mohamad R, Zaidan UH, Rahman NA
    Microb Cell Fact, 2020 Jan 15;19(1):10.
    PMID: 31941498 DOI: 10.1186/s12934-020-1279-6
    BACKGROUND: The use of microorganisms in the biosynthesis of zinc oxide nanoparticles (ZnO NPs) has recently emerged as an alternative to chemical and physical methods due to its low-cost and eco-friendly method. Several lactic acid bacteria (LAB) have developed mechanisms in tolerating Zn2+ through prevention against their toxicity and the production of ZnO NPs. The LAB's main resistance mechanism to Zn2+ is highly depended on the microorganisms' ability to interact with Zn2+ either through biosorption or bioaccumulation processes. Besides the inadequate studies conducted on biosynthesis with the use of zinc-tolerant probiotics, the understanding regarding the mechanism involved in this process is not clear. Therefore, this study determines the features of probiotic LAB strain TA4 related to its resistance to Zn2+. It also attempts to illustrate its potential in creating a sustainable microbial cell nanofactory of ZnO NPs.

    RESULTS: A zinc-tolerant probiotic strain TA4, which was isolated from local fermented food, was selected based on the principal component analysis (PCA) with the highest score of probiotic attributes. Based on the 16S rRNA gene analysis, this strain was identified as Lactobacillus plantarum strain TA4, indicating its high resistance to Zn2+ at a maximum tolerable concentration (MTC) value of 500 mM and its capability of producing ZnO NPs. The UV-visible spectroscopy analysis proved the formations of ZnO NPs through the notable absorption peak at 380 nm. It was also found from the dynamic light scattering (DLS) analysis that the Z-average particle size amounted to 124.2 nm with monodisperse ZnO NPs. Studies on scanning electron microscope (SEM), energy-dispersive X-ray (EDX) spectroscopy, and Fourier-transform infrared spectroscopy (FT-IR) revealed that the main mechanisms in ZnO NPs biosynthesis were facilitated by the Zn2+ biosorption ability through the functional groups present on the cell surface of strain TA4.

    CONCLUSIONS: The strong ability of zinc-tolerant probiotic of L. plantarum strain TA4 to tolerate high Zn2+ concentration and to produce ZnO NPs highlights the unique properties of these bacteria as a natural microbial cell nanofactory for a more sustainable and eco-friendly practice of ZnO NPs biosynthesis.

  15. Zamani AI, Barig S, Ibrahim S, Mohd Yusof H, Ibrahim J, Low JYS, et al.
    Microb Cell Fact, 2020 Sep 09;19(1):179.
    PMID: 32907579 DOI: 10.1186/s12934-020-01434-w
    BACKGROUND: Sugars and triglycerides are common carbon sources for microorganisms. Nonetheless, a systematic comparative interpretation of metabolic changes upon vegetable oil or glucose as sole carbon source is still lacking. Selected fungi that can grow in acidic mineral salt media (MSM) with vegetable oil had been identified recently. Hence, this study aimed to investigate the overall metabolite changes of an omnipotent fungus and to reveal changes at central carbon metabolism corresponding to both carbon sources.

    RESULTS: Targeted and non-targeted metabolomics for both polar and semi-polar metabolites of Phialemonium curvatum AWO2 (DSM 23903) cultivated in MSM with palm oil (MSM-P) or glucose (MSM-G) as carbon sources were obtained. Targeted metabolomics on central carbon metabolism of tricarboxylic acid (TCA) cycle and glyoxylate cycle were analysed using LC-MS/MS-TripleQ and GC-MS, while untargeted metabolite profiling was performed using LC-MS/MS-QTOF followed by multivariate analysis. Targeted metabolomics analysis showed that glyoxylate pathway and TCA cycle were recruited at central carbon metabolism for triglyceride and glucose catabolism, respectively. Significant differences in organic acids concentration of about 4- to 8-fold were observed for citric acid, succinic acid, malic acid, and oxaloacetic acid. Correlation of organic acids concentration and key enzymes involved in the central carbon metabolism was further determined by enzymatic assays. On the other hand, the untargeted profiling revealed seven metabolites undergoing significant changes between MSM-P and MSM-G cultures.

    CONCLUSIONS: Overall, this study has provided insights on the understanding on the effect of triglycerides and sugar as carbon source in fungi global metabolic pathway, which might become important for future optimization of carbon flux engineering in fungi to improve organic acids production when vegetable oil is applied as the sole carbon source.

  16. Chee WJY, Chew SY, Than LTL
    Microb Cell Fact, 2020 Nov 07;19(1):203.
    PMID: 33160356 DOI: 10.1186/s12934-020-01464-4
    Human vagina is colonised by a diverse array of microorganisms that make up the normal microbiota and mycobiota. Lactobacillus is the most frequently isolated microorganism from the healthy human vagina, this includes Lactobacillus crispatus, Lactobacillus gasseri, Lactobacillus iners, and Lactobacillus jensenii. These vaginal lactobacilli have been touted to prevent invasion of pathogens by keeping their population in check. However, the disruption of vaginal ecosystem contributes to the overgrowth of pathogens which causes complicated vaginal infections such as bacterial vaginosis (BV), sexually transmitted infections (STIs), and vulvovaginal candidiasis (VVC). Predisposing factors such as menses, pregnancy, sexual practice, uncontrolled usage of antibiotics, and vaginal douching can alter the microbial community. Therefore, the composition of vaginal microbiota serves an important role in determining vagina health. Owing to their Generally Recognised as Safe (GRAS) status, lactobacilli have been widely utilised as one of the alternatives besides conventional antimicrobial treatment against vaginal pathogens for the prevention of chronic vaginitis and the restoration of vaginal ecosystem. In addition, the effectiveness of Lactobacillus as prophylaxis has also been well-founded in long-term administration. This review aimed to highlight the beneficial effects of lactobacilli derivatives (i.e. surface-active molecules) with anti-biofilm, antioxidant, pathogen-inhibition, and immunomodulation activities in developing remedies for vaginal infections. We also discuss the current challenges in the implementation of the use of lactobacilli derivatives in promotion of human health. In the current review, we intend to provide insights for the development of lactobacilli derivatives as a complementary or alternative medicine to conventional probiotic therapy in vaginal health.
  17. Nakkarach A, Foo HL, Song AA, Mutalib NEA, Nitisinprasert S, Withayagiat U
    Microb Cell Fact, 2021 Feb 05;20(1):36.
    PMID: 33546705 DOI: 10.1186/s12934-020-01477-z
    BACKGROUND: Extracellular metabolites of short chain fatty acids (SCFA) excreted by gut microbiota have been reported to play an important role in the regulation of intestinal homeostasis. Apart from supplying energy, SCFA also elicit immune stimulation in animal and human cells. Therefore, an attempt was conducted to isolate SCFA producing bacteria from healthy human microbiota. The anti-cancer and anti-inflammatory effects of extracellular metabolites and individual SFCA were further investigated by using breast, colon cancer and macrophage cells. Toxin, inflammatory and anti-inflammatory cytokine gene expressions were investigated by RT-qPCR analyses in this study.

    RESULTS: Escherichia coli KUB-36 was selected in this study since it has the capability to produce seven SCFA extracellularly. It produced acetic acid as the main SCFA. It is a non-exotoxin producer and hence, it is a safe gut microbiota. The IC50 values indicated that the E. coli KUB-36 metabolites treatment elicited more potent cytotoxicity effect on MCF7 breast cancer cell as compared to colon cancer and leukemia cancer cells but exhibited little cytotoxic effects on normal breast cell. Furthermore, E. coli KUB-36 metabolites and individual SCFA could affect inflammatory responses in lipopolysaccharide-induced THP-1 macrophage cells since they suppressed inflammatory cytokines IL-1β, IL-6, IL-8 and TNF-α well as compared to the control, whilst inducing anti-inflammatory cytokine IL-10 expression.

    CONCLUSION: SCFA producing E. coli KUB-36 possessed vast potential as a beneficial gut microbe since it is a non-exotoxin producer that exhibited beneficial cytotoxic effects on cancer cells and elicited anti-inflammatory activity simultaneously. However, the probiotic characteristic of E. coli KUB-36 should be further elucidated using in vivo animal models.

  18. Nosheen S, Naz T, Yang J, Hussain SA, Fazili ABA, Nazir Y, et al.
    Microb Cell Fact, 2021 Feb 27;20(1):52.
    PMID: 33639948 DOI: 10.1186/s12934-021-01545-y
    BACKGROUND: Mucor circinelloides WJ11 is a high-lipid producing strain and an excellent producer of γ-linolenic acid (GLA) which is crucial for human health. We have previously identified genes that encode for AMP-activated protein kinase (AMPK) complex in M. circinelloides which is an important regulator for lipid accumulation. Comparative transcriptional analysis between the high and low lipid-producing strains of M. circinelloides showed a direct correlation in the transcriptional level of AMPK genes with lipid metabolism. Thus, the role of Snf-β, which encodes for β subunit of AMPK complex, in lipid accumulation of the WJ11 strain was evaluated in the present study.

    RESULTS: The results showed that lipid content of cell dry weight in Snf-β knockout strain was increased by 32 % (from 19 to 25 %). However, in Snf-β overexpressing strain, lipid content of cell dry weight was decreased about 25 % (from 19 to 14.2 %) compared to the control strain. Total fatty acid analysis revealed that the expression of the Snf-β gene did not significantly affect the fatty acid composition of the strains. However, GLA content in biomass was increased from 2.5 % in control strain to 3.3 % in Snf-β knockout strain due to increased lipid accumulation and decreased to 1.83 % in Snf-β overexpressing strain. AMPK is known to inactivate acetyl-CoA carboxylase (ACC) which catalyzes the rate-limiting step in lipid synthesis. Snf-β manipulation also altered the expression level of the ACC1 gene which may indicate that Snf-β control lipid metabolism by regulating ACC1 gene.

    CONCLUSIONS: Our results suggested that Snf-β gene plays an important role in regulating lipid accumulation in M. circinelloides WJ11. Moreover, it will be interesting to evaluate the potential of other key subunits of AMPK related to lipid metabolism. Better insight can show us the way to manipulate these subunits effectively for upscaling the lipid production. Up to our knowledge, it is the first study to investigate the role of Snf-β in lipid accumulation in M. circinelloides.

  19. Lah NAC, Gray R, Trigueros S
    Microb Cell Fact, 2021 Feb 17;20(1):46.
    PMID: 33596912 DOI: 10.1186/s12934-020-01478-y
    With the long-term goal of developing an ultra-sensitive microcantilever-based biosensor for versatile biomarker detection, new controlled bioreceptor-analytes systems are being explored to overcome the disadvantages of conventional ones. Gold (Au) microwires have been used as a probe to overcome the tolerance problem that occurs in response to changes in environmental conditions. However, the cytotoxicity of Au microwires is still unclear. Here, we examined the cytotoxicity of Au microwires systems using both commercial and as-synthesised Au microwires. In vitro experiments show that commercial Au microwires with an average quoted length of 5.6 µm are highly toxic against Gram-negative Escherichia coli (E. coli) at 50 µg/mL. However, this toxicity is due to the presence of CTAB surfactant not by the microwires. Conversely, the as-synthesised Au microwires show non-cytotoxicity even at the maximum viable concentration (330 µg/mL). These findings may lead to the development of potentially life-saving cytotoxicity-free biosensors for an early diagnostic of potential diseases.
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