Objective: The production of some bio-chemicals affected by the cell growth. This study aimed at promoting the cell growth by overexpressing the synthesis of peptidoglycans tetrapeptide tail components to improve poly-γ-glutamic acid (γ-PGA) production.
Results: L-alanine, D-alanine and D-alanyl-D-alanine are primary precursors for the synthesis of peptidoglycans. The addition of L-alanine and D-alanine significantly increased both the cell growth and production of γ-PGA. Then, several genes encoding key enzymes for L/D-alanine and D-alanyl-D-alanine biosynthesis were overexpressed respectively, including ald (encoding alanine dehydrogenase), dal (encoding alanine racemase) and ddl (encoding D-alanine ligase). The results showed that the overexpression of genes ald , dal and ddl increased the production of γ-PGA by 19.72%, 15.91% and 60.90%, and increased the microbial biomass by 15.58%, 18.34% and 49.85%, respectively. Moreover, we demonstrated that the overexpression of genes ald , dal and ddl increased γ-PGA production mainly by enhancing cell growth rather than providing more precursors.
Conclusions: This work illustrated the importance of the L/D-alanine and D-alanyl-D-alanine synthesis to the cell growth and the high yield of γ-PGA, and provided an effective strategy for producing γ-PGA .