Conversion of gamma-butyrobetaine to L-carnitine by Achromobacter cycloclast

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Conversion of gamma-butyrobetaine to L-carnitine by Achromobacter cycloclast
G S Naidu; In Young Lee; Ock Ki Cho; Young Hoon Park
Bibliographic Citation
Journal of Industrial Microbiology & Biotechnology, vol. 26, no. 5, pp. 309-315
Publication Year
L-Carnitine is an ubiquitous substance that plays a major role in the transportation of long-chain fatty acids. We investigated crucial factors that influence microbial conversion of γ-butyrobetaine to L-carnitine using an Achromobacter cycloclast strain. Two-stage culture results showed that γ-butyrobetaine induced enzymes essential for the conversion, which suggests that the precursor should be present in the initial cell growth stage. The addition of yeast extract enhanced L-carnitine production whereas inorganic nitrogen sources inhibited it. Under nitrogen-limiting conditions, the cells accumulated poly-β-hydroxybutyrate instead of L-carnitine. Among the trace elements tested, nickel addition enhanced L-carnitine production by almost twice that of the control and copper strongly inhibited the conversion. L-Carnitine production was reduced when the medium contained inorganic salts of sodium, potassium, and calcium at a concentration greater than 2 g I-1. A higher L-carnitine yield was achieved when cells were incubated in a lower culture volume. The optimal pH for L-carnitine production was 5 to 5.5, whereas that of growth was 7.0, indicating that a pH shift was required. Under optimal conditions, L-carnitine concentrations as high as 15 g I-1 were obtained in 62 h with a 45% molar conversion yield.
γ-ButyrobetaineAchromobacter cycloclastL-CarnitineProduction
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