Molecular farming increasingly uses the tobacco relative Nicotiana benthamiana for production of recombinant proteins through transient expression. Several proteins are produced efficiently with this expression platform, but yields for other proteins are often very low. These low yields are frequently due to endogenous proteases. The latest genome annotations indicate that N. benthamiana encodes for at least 1243 putative proteases that probably act redundantly and consecutively on substrates in different subcellular compartments. Here, we discuss the N. benthamiana protease repertoire that may affect recombinant protein production and recent advances in protease depletion strategies to increase recombinant protein production in N. benthamiana.
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