Metabolic engineering

Metabolic engineering is the use of genetic engineering to modify the metabolism of an organism. It can involve the optimization of existing biochemical pathways or the introduction of pathway components, most commonly in bacteria, yeast or plants, with the goal of high-yield production of specific metabolites for medicine or biotechnology.

Latest Research and Reviews

News and Comment

  • News and Views |

    Islet of Langerhans transplantation as a cell therapy for type 1 diabetes faces obstacles that have prevented full and lasting engraftment in the liver, the currently preferred implantation site in clinical practice. Yu and colleagues circumvent these issues and achieve stable diabetes reversal by transplanting islets encapsulated in a simple collagen-based matrix into the more accessible subcutaneous space.

    • Thierry Berney
    •  & Ekaterine Berishvili
    Nature Metabolism 2, 993-994
  • News and Views |

    Macrocyclic peptide natural products are important medicinal compounds. The catalytic properties of an unusual peptide cyclase enzyme have recently been described — providing opportunities for the engineering and synthesis of structurally complex peptides with novel biological activities.

    • Mohamed A. Attia
    •  & Christopher J. Thibodeaux
    Nature Catalysis 3, 476-477
  • News and Views |

    Whereas textbooks depict metabolism in perfect homeostasis, disturbances occur in real life. One particularly relevant disturbance, caused by excess food and alcohol consumption and exacerbated by genetics, is reductive stress. New work by Goodman et al. identifies a biomarker of reductive stress and uses a gene therapy solution in mice. This work suggests how exercise and an accessible nutritional technology can synergistically increase catabolism and relieve reductive stress.

    • Collin D. Heer
    •  & Charles Brenner
    Nature Metabolism 2, 485-486