Renewable Bio-Solar Hydrogen Production: The Second Generation (Part B)
Final rept. 15 May 2011-31 Dec 2014
PENNSYLVANIA STATE UNIV STATE COLLEGE DEPT OF BIOCHEMISTRY AND MOLECULAR BIOLOGY
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In this project we used targeted mutagenesis, overexpression of genes, transcription profiling, and metabolic profiling of the cyanobacterium Synechococcus sp. PCC 7002 to understand better how to optimize the production of biohydrogen and potential carbon-based biofuel molecules. A major finding was that the tricarboxylic acid TCA cycle is not branched, as had been believed for nearly 50 years, but is in fact closed by two noncanonical enzymes that replace 2-oxoglutarate dehydrogenase. In addition to redefining the TCA cycle, we validated the occurrence of the glyoxylate cycle and the gamma-aminobutyric acid GABA shunt in a few cyanobacteria, and we studied the partitioning of metabolites between the glycolytic and oxidative pentose phosphate pathways. Important transcription regulators, including RbcR, Fur, and ChlR, were identified and characterized. Approaches to maximize biohydrogen production and carbon-based biofuels e.g., cellulose, poly-hydroxybutyrate were characterized and optimized. These studies yielded important new biochemical details about critically important aspects of cyanobacterial physiology and metabolism.
- Genetic Engineering and Molecular Biology