Microbial hydroxylation of long chain fatty acids has been extensively investigated. However, biotransformation productivity remains below ca. 1.0 g/g cell dry weight (CDW)/h under process conditions. In the present study, a highly efficient microbial hydroxylation process to convert oleic acid into 10-hydroxystearic acid was developed. A recombinant Escherichia coli expressing ohyA, the gene encoding oleate hydratase of Stenotrophomonas maltophilia, was used as the biocatalyst. Investigation of the ohyA expression and biotransformation conditions (e.g., inducer concentration, gene expression period before initiating biotransformation, mixing condition of reaction medium) enabled 10-hydroxystearic acid to accumulate to a final concentration of approximately 46 g/L in the culture medium. The specific product formation rate and product yield reached approximately 2.0 g/g CDW/h (i.e., 110 U/g CDW) and 91%, respectively. The specific product formation rate was more than 3-fold higher than those of a bioprocess using wild type Stenotrophomonas sp. cells. Additionally, the product of the whole-cell biotransformation was recovered at a yield of 70.9% and a purity of 99.7% via solvent fraction crystallization at low temperature. These results will contribute to developing a biological process for hydroxylation of oleic acid.
Bibliographical noteFunding Information:
This study was supported by the Small & Medium Business Administration and the Marine Biomaterials Research Center grant from Marine Biotechnology Program funded by the Ministry of Land, Transport and Maritime Affairs, Korea .
- 10-Hydroxystearic acid
- Escherichia coli
- Oleate hydratase
- Stenotrophomonas maltophilia