Metabolic Engineering for Production of Small Molecule Drugs: Challenges and Solutions
Huttanus, Herbert M.
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Production of small molecule drugs in a recombinant host is becoming an increasingly popular alternative to chemical synthesis or production in natural hosts such as plants due to the ease of growing microorganisms with higher titers and less cost. While there are a wide variety of well-developed cloning techniques to produce small molecule drugs in a heterologous host, there are still many challenges towards efficient production. Therefore, this paper reviews some of these recently developed tools for metabolic engineering and categorizes them according to a chronological series of steps for a generalized method of drug production in a heterologous host, including 1) pathway discovery from a natural host, 2) pathway assembly in the recombinant host, and 3) pathway optimization to increase titers and yield.