In situ recovery of lycopene during biosynthesis with recombinant Escherichia coli

Ko Woon Yoon, Eun Hee Doo, Seon Won Kim, Jin Byung Park

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

20 Scopus citations


Lycopene is produced by recombinant Escherichia coli expressing genes to encode for the lycopene biosynthesis. However, the productivity of lycopene seemed to be limited by many factors including product toxicity. In the present study, we have investigated physiology of recombinant E. coli during biosynthesis and in situ recovery of lycopene based on an organic/aqueous two-phase system. Lycopene, the 40-carbon molecule product, was little extracted from recombinant E. coli cells to octane or decane phase. However, partial digestion of cell walls with lysozyme promoted extraction of lycopene into the organic phases. Engineering of an organic/aqueous two-phase system allowed recombinant E. coli cells to produce ca. 40% larger amount of lycopene compared to that in a conventional aqueous single-phase system. Optimization of the in situ product recovery process will lead to further increase of product concentration and productivity.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)291-294
Number of pages4
JournalJournal of Biotechnology
Issue number3
StatePublished - 30 Jun 2008

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
This work was financially supported by Ewha Womans University.


  • In situ product recovery
  • Lycopene
  • Spheroplasts
  • Two-liquid phase


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