Author(s): Wittmann C, Heinzle E
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Abstract Experimental design of (13)C-tracer studies for metabolic flux analysis with mass spectrometric determination of labeling patterns was performed for the central metabolism of Corynebacterium glutamicum comprising various flux scenarios. Ratio measurement of mass isotopomer pools of Corynebacterium products lysine, alanine, and trehalose is sufficient to quantify the flux partitioning ratios (i) between glycolysis and pentose phosphate pathways (Phi(PPP)), (ii) between the split pathways in the lysine biosynthesis (Phi(DH)), (iii) at the pyruvate node (Phi(PC)), and reversibilities of (iv) glucose 6-phosphate isomerase (zeta(PGI)), (v) at the pyruvate node (zeta(PC/PEPCK)), and (vi) of transaldolase and transketolases in the PPP. Weighted sensitivities for flux parameters were derived from partial derivatives to quantitatively evaluate experimental approaches and predict precision for estimated flux parameters. Deviation of intensity ratios from ideal values of 1 was used as weighting function. Weighted flux sensitivities can be used to identify optimal type and degree of tracer labeling or potential intensity ratios to be measured. Experimental design for lysine-producing strain C. glutamicum MH 20-22B (Marx et al., Biotechnol. Bioeng. 49, 111-129, 1996) and various potential mutants with different alterations in the flux pattern showed that specific tracer labelings are optimal to quantify a certain flux parameter uninfluenced by the overall flux situation. Identified substrates of choice are [1-(13)C]glucose for the estimation of Phi(PPP) and zeta(PGI) and a 1 : 1 mixture of [U-(12)C/U-(13)C]glucose for the determination of zeta(PC/PEPCK). Phi(PC) can be quantified by feeding [4-(13)C]glucose or [U-(12)C/U-(13)C]glucose (1 : 1), whereas Phi(DH) is accessible via [4-(13)C]glucose. The sensitivity for the quantification of a certain flux parameter can be influenced by superposition through other flux parameters in the network, but substrate and measured mass isotopomers of choice remain the same. In special cases, reduced labeling degree of the tracer substrate can increase the precision of flux analysis. Enhanced precision and flux information can be achieved via multiply labeled substrates. The presented approach can be applied for effective experimental design of (13)C tracer studies for metabolic flux analysis. Intensity ratios of other products such as glutamate, valine, phenylalanine, and riboflavin also sensitively reflect flux parameters, which underlines the great potential of mass spectrometry for flux analysis. Copyright 2001 Academic Press.
This article was published in Metab Eng
and referenced in Journal of Computer Science & Systems Biology