News FocusBiotechnology

Engineering Metabolism for Commercial Gains

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Science  12 Mar 1999:
Vol. 283, Issue 5408, pp. 1625-1626
DOI: 10.1126/science.283.5408.1625

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Researchers are turning microbes into one-pot chemical reactors, able to perform multiple enzymatic steps to convert sugars and other raw materials into industrial chemicals or pharmaceuticals. The strategy draws on two decades of advances in microbial genetics and a new understanding of cells' metabolic pathways. It can save money by combining several chemical steps into one reaction vessel.