Engineering ergothioneine production in Yarrowia lipolytica

van der Hoek, Steven A, Rusnak, Matej, Jacobsen, Irene Hjorth, Martinez, Jose L, Kell, Douglas B ORCID: 0000-0001-5838-7963 and Borodina, Irina
(2021) Engineering ergothioneine production in Yarrowia lipolytica. FEBS LETTERS, 596 (10). pp. 1356-1364.

Access the full-text of this item by clicking on the Open Access link.


Ergothioneine is a naturally occurring antioxidant that has shown potential in ameliorating neurodegenerative and cardiovascular diseases. In this study, we investigated the potential of the Crabtree-negative, oleaginous yeast Yarrowia lipolytica as an alternative host for ergothioneine production. We expressed the biosynthetic enzymes EGT1 from Neurospora crassa and EGT2 from Claviceps purpurea to obtain 158 mg·L<sup>-1</sup> of ergothioneine in small-scale cultivation, with an additional copy of each gene improving the titer to 205 mg·L<sup>-1</sup> . The effect of phosphate limitation on ergothioneine production was studied, and finally, a phosphate-limited fed-batch fermentation in 1 L bioreactors yielded 1.63 ± 0.04 g·L<sup>-1</sup> ergothioneine in 220 h, corresponding to an overall volumetric productivity of 7.41 mg·L<sup>-1</sup> ·h<sup>-1</sup> , showing that Y. lipolytica is a promising host for ergothioneine production.

Item Type: Article
Uncontrolled Keywords: ergothioneine, metabolic engineering, nutraceutical, phosphate-limitation, Yarrowia lipolytica
Divisions: Faculty of Health and Life Sciences
Faculty of Health and Life Sciences > Institute of Systems, Molecular and Integrative Biology
Depositing User: Symplectic Admin
Date Deposited: 18 May 2022 09:22
Last Modified: 18 Jan 2023 21:01
DOI: 10.1002/1873-3468.14239
Open Access URL:
Related URLs: