Ethanol yield improvement in Saccharomyces cerevisiae GPD2 Delta FPS1 Delta ADH2 Delta DLD3 Delta mutant and molecular mechanism exploration based on the metabolic flux and transcriptomics approaches

Microb Cell Fact. 2022 Aug 13;21(1):160. doi: 10.1186/s12934-022-01885-3.


Background: Saccharomyces cerevisiae generally consumes glucose to produce ethanol accompanied by the main by-products of glycerol, acetic acid, and lactic acid. The minimization of the formation of by-products in S. cerevisiae was an effective way to improve the economic viability of the bioethanol industry. In this study, S. cerevisiae GPD2, FPS1, ADH2, and DLD3 genes were knocked out by the Clustered Regularly Interspaced Short Palindromic Repeats Cas9 (CRISPR-Cas9) approach. The mechanism of gene deletion affecting ethanol metabolism was further elucidated based on metabolic flux and transcriptomics approaches.

Results: The engineered S. cerevisiae with gene deletion of GPD2, FPS1, ADH2, and DLD3 was constructed by the CRISPR-Cas9 approach. The ethanol content of engineered S. cerevisiae GPD2 Delta FPS1 Delta ADH2 Delta DLD3 Delta increased by 18.58% with the decrease of glycerol, acetic acid, and lactic acid contents by 22.32, 8.87, and 16.82%, respectively. The metabolic flux analysis indicated that the carbon flux rethanol in engineered strain increased from 60.969 to 63.379. The sequencing-based RNA-Seq transcriptomics represented 472 differential expression genes (DEGs) were identified in engineered S. cerevisiae, in which 195 and 277 genes were significantly up-regulated and down-regulated, respectively. The enriched pathways of up-regulated genes were mainly involved in the energy metabolism of carbohydrates, while the down-regulated genes were mainly enriched in acid metabolic pathways.

Conclusions: The yield of ethanol in engineered S. cerevisiae increased with the decrease of the by-products including glycerol, acetic acid, and lactic acid. The deletion of genes GPD2, FPS1, ADH2, and DLD3 resulted in the redirection of carbon flux.

Keywords: CRISPR-Cas9; Engineered Saccharomyces cerevisiae; Ethanol production; Gene knock-out; Metabolic flux; Transcriptomics analysis.

MeSH terms

  • Alcohol Dehydrogenase / genetics
  • Ethanol / metabolism
  • Fermentation
  • Glycerol / metabolism
  • Lactic Acid / metabolism
  • Membrane Proteins / genetics
  • Saccharomyces cerevisiae Proteins* / genetics
  • Saccharomyces cerevisiae Proteins* / metabolism
  • Saccharomyces cerevisiae* / genetics
  • Saccharomyces cerevisiae* / metabolism
  • Transcriptome


  • FPS1 protein, S cerevisiae
  • Membrane Proteins
  • Saccharomyces cerevisiae Proteins
  • Lactic Acid
  • Ethanol
  • ADH2 protein, S cerevisiae
  • Alcohol Dehydrogenase
  • Glycerol