Developing an extended genomic engineering approach based on recombineering to knock-in heterologous genes to Escherichia coli genome

Mol Biotechnol. 2012 Jun;51(2):109-18. doi: 10.1007/s12033-011-9442-2.


Most existing genomic engineering protocols for manipulation of Escherichia coli are primarily focused on chromosomal gene knockout. In this study, a simple but systematic chromosomal gene knock-in method was proposed based on a previously developed protocol using bacteriophage λ (λ Red) and flippase-flippase recognition targets (FLP-FRT) recombinations. For demonstration purposes, DNA operons containing heterologous genes (i.e., pac encoding E. coli penicillin acylase and palB2 encoding Pseudozyma antarctica lipase B mutant) engineered with regulatory elements, such as strong/inducible promoters (i.e., P( trc ) and P( araB )), operators, and ribosomal binding sites, were integrated into the E. coli genome at designated locations (i.e., lacZYA, dbpA, and lacI-mhpR loci) either as a gene replacement or gene insertion using various antibiotic selection markers (i.e., kanamycin and chloramphenicol) under various genetic backgrounds (i.e., HB101 and DH5α). The expression of the inserted foreign genes was subjected to regulation using appropriate inducers [isopropyl β-D: -1-thiogalactopyranoside (IPTG) and arabinose] at tunable concentrations. The developed approach not only enables more extensive genomic engineering of E. coli, but also paves an effective way to "tailor" plasmid-free E. coli strains with desired genotypes suitable for various biotechnological applications, such as biomanufacturing and metabolic engineering.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Escherichia coli / genetics*
  • Escherichia coli / metabolism
  • Escherichia coli Proteins / biosynthesis
  • Escherichia coli Proteins / genetics
  • Escherichia coli Proteins / metabolism
  • Fungal Proteins / biosynthesis
  • Fungal Proteins / genetics
  • Fungal Proteins / metabolism
  • Gene Expression Regulation, Bacterial
  • Gene Knock-In Techniques / methods*
  • Genetic Engineering / methods*
  • Genome, Bacterial*
  • Lipase / biosynthesis
  • Lipase / genetics
  • Lipase / metabolism
  • Models, Genetic
  • Penicillin Amidase / genetics
  • Penicillin Amidase / metabolism
  • Recombinant Proteins / biosynthesis
  • Recombinant Proteins / genetics
  • Recombinant Proteins / metabolism
  • Regulatory Sequences, Nucleic Acid


  • Escherichia coli Proteins
  • Fungal Proteins
  • Recombinant Proteins
  • Lipase
  • Penicillin Amidase