Pamamycins, a group of polyketides originally discovered in Streptomyces alboniger, induce sporulation in Streptomyces and inhibit the growth of Gram-positive bacteria, Mycobacterium tuberculosis and fungi. The pamamycin biosynthetic gene cluster encodes 6 ketosynthases that utilize a variety of three-carbon to five-carbon CoA thioesters as starter and extender units. This promiscuity in production results in an up to 18 different derivatives during fermentation. For more-selective production and simplified purification, we aimed to modify the precursor supply to narrow the spectrum of the produced derivatives. Eight genes potentially responsible for the supply of two major precursors, 2-S-methylmalonyl-CoA and 2-S-ethylmalonyl-CoA, were identified using the NCBI Basic Local Alignment Search Tool (BLAST) against the genome of the heterologous host S. albus J1074. Knockout mutants of the identified genes were constructed and their impact on intracellular CoA ester concentrations and on the production of pamamycins was determined. The created mutants enabled us to conclusively identify the ethylmalonyl-CoA supplying routes and their impact on the production of pamamycin. Furthermore, we gained significant information on the origin of the methylmalonyl-CoA supply in Streptomyces albus.
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