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Microbiology and Biotechnology Letters


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Microbial Biotechnology (MB)  |  Whole Cell Biocatalysis and Bioprocess Engineering

Microbiol. Biotechnol. Lett. 2021; 49(2): 174-180

Received: February 25, 2021; Revised: March 24, 2021; Accepted: March 26, 2021

Biosynthesis of Three Chalcone β-D-glucosides by Glycosyltransferase from Bacillus subtilis ATCC 6633

Yinuo Fei1, Yan Shao1, Weiwei Wang1, Yatian Cheng1, Boyang Yu1, Xiaorong He2*, and Jian Zhang1,3*

1State Key Laboratory of Natural Medicines, 2School of Engineering, China Pharmaceutical University, Nanjing 210009, P. R. China 3ZhenPing Expert Workstation for Zhang Jian, Zhenping, Ankang, Shaanxi 725699, P. R. China

Correspondence to :
Xiaorong He,
Jian zhang,

Chalcones exhibit multiple biological activities. Various studies have attempted to modify the structure of chalcones with a special focus on the addition of substituents to the benzene rings. However, these chemical modifications did not improve the water solubility and bioavailability of chalcones. Glycosylation can markedly affect the physical and chemical properties of hydrophobic compounds. Here, we evaluated the ability of a highly promiscuous glycosyltransferase (GT) BsGT1 from Bacillus subtilis ATCC 6633 to biosynthesize chalcone glucosides. Purified BsGT1 catalyzed the conversion of 4'-hydroxychalcone (compound 1), 4'-hydroxy-4-methylchalcone (compound 2), and 4-hydroxy-4'-methoxychalcone (compound 3), into chalcone 4'-O-β-D-glucoside (compound 1a), 4-methylchalcone 4'-O-β-D-glucoside (compound 2a), and 4'- methoxychalcone 4-O-β-D-glucoside (compound 3a), respectively. To avoid the addition of expensive uridine diphosphate glucose (UDP-Glc), a whole-cell biotransformation system was employed to provide a natural intracellular environment for in situ co-factor regeneration. The yields of compounds 1a, 2a, and 3a were as high as 90.38%, 100% and 74.79%, respectively. The successful co-expression of BsGT1 with phosphoglucomutase (PGM) and UDP-Glc pyrophosphorylase (GalU), which are involved in the biosynthetic pathway of UDP-Glc, further improved the conversion rates of chalcones (the yields of compounds 1a and 3a increased by approximately 10%). In conclusion, we demonstrated an effective whole-cell biocatalytic system for the enzymatic biosynthesis of chalcone β-D-glucoside derivatives.

Keywords: Glycosyltransferase, Chalcone beta-D-glucosides, Bacillus subtilis ATCC 6633, glycosylation

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