Perspectives of biotechnological production of L-tyrosine and its applications

Appl Microbiol Biotechnol. 2007 Dec;77(4):751-62. doi: 10.1007/s00253-007-1243-y. Epub 2007 Oct 30.


The aromatic amino acid L-tyrosine is used as a dietary supplement and has promise as a valuable precursor compound for various industrial and pharmaceutical applications. In contrast to chemical production, biotechnological methods can produce L-tyrosine from biomass feedstocks under environmentally friendly and near carbon-free conditions. In this minireview, various strategies for synthesizing L-tyrosine by employing biocatalysts are discussed, including initial approaches as well as more recent advances. Whereas early attempts to engineer L-tyrosine-excreting microbes were based on auxotrophic and antimetabolite-resistant mutants, recombinant deoxyribonucleic acid technology and a vastly increasing knowledge of bacterial physiology allowed recently for more targeted genetic manipulations and strain improvements. As an alternative route, L-tyrosine can also be obtained from the conversion of phenol, pyruvate, and ammonia or phenol and serine in reactions catalyzed by the enzyme tyrosine phenol lyase.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, Non-P.H.S.
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Amino Acids
  • Bacteria / enzymology
  • Bacteria / genetics
  • Bacteria / metabolism*
  • Bacterial Physiological Phenomena
  • Biotechnology / methods
  • Genetic Engineering / methods*
  • Tyrosine / biosynthesis*
  • Tyrosine Phenol-Lyase / metabolism*


  • Amino Acids
  • Tyrosine
  • Tyrosine Phenol-Lyase