Biotechnology and Bioengineering, Vol.117, No.6, 1649-1660, 2020
Simultaneous increases in the levels of compatible solutes by cost-effective cultivation of Synechocystis sp. PCC 6803
Synechocystis sp. PCC 6803, a cyanobacterium widely used for basic research, is often cultivated in a synthetic medium, BG-11, in the presence of 4-(2-hydroxyethyl)-1-piperazine ethanesulfonic acid (HEPES) or 2-[[1,3-dihydroxy-2-(hydroxymethyl)propan-2-yl]amino]ethanesulfonic acid buffer. Owing to the high cost of HEPES buffer (96.9% of the total cost of BG-11 medium), the biotechnological application of BG-11 is limited. In this study, we cultured Synechocystis sp. PCC 6803 cells in BG-11 medium without HEPES buffer and examined the effects on the primary metabolism. Synechocystis sp. PCC 6803 cells could grow in BG-11 medium without HEPES buffer after adjusting for nitrogen sources and light intensity; the production rate reached 0.54 g cell dry weight center dot L-1 center dot day(-1), exceeding that of commercial cyanobacteria and Synechocystis sp. PCC 6803 cells cultivated under other conditions. The exclusion of HEPES buffer markedly altered the metabolites in the central carbon metabolism; particularly, the levels of compatible solutes, such as sucrose, glucosylglycerol, and glutamate were increased. Although the accumulation of sucrose and glucosylglycerol under high salt conditions is antagonistic to each other, these metabolites accumulated simultaneously in cells grown in the cost-effective medium. Because these metabolites are used in industrial feedstocks, our results reveal the importance of medium composition for the production of metabolites using cyanobacteria.