Transient effects of overexpressing anthranilate synthase α and β subunits in Catharanthus roseus hairy roots

Christie A.M. Peebles, Seung Beom Hong, Susan I. Gibson, Jacqueline V. Shanks, Ka Yiu San

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

31 Scopus citations

Abstract

Catharanthus roseus produces two economically valuable anticancer drugs, vinblastine and vincristine. These drugs are members of the terpenoid indole alkaloids and accumulate in small quantities within the plant; thus these two drugs are expensive to produce. Metabolic engineering efforts have focused on increasing the alkaloids in this pathway through various means such as elicitation, precursor feeding, and gene overexpression. Recently we successfully expressed Arabidopsis genes encoding a feedback-insensitive anthranilate synthase α subunit under the control of the glucocorticoid-inducible promoter system and the anthranilate synthase β subunit under the control of a constitutive promoter in C. roseus hairy roots. In this work we look at the transient behaviors of terpenoid indole alkaloids over a 72 h induction period in late exponential growth phase cultures. Upon induction, the tryptophan, tryptamine, and ajmalicine pools accumulated over 72 h. In contrast, the lochnericine, hörhammericine, and tabersonine pools decreased and leveled out over the 72 h induction period. Visible changes within the individual compounds usually took from 4 to 12 h.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1572-1576
Number of pages5
JournalBiotechnology Progress
Volume21
Issue number5
DOIs
StatePublished - Sep 1 2005

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