The initial focus of recombinant protein production by filamentous fungi related to exploiting the extraordinary extracellular enzyme synthesis and secretion machinery of industrial strains, including Aspergillus , Trichoderma , Penicillium and Rhizopus species, was to produce single recombinant protein products. An early recognized disadvantage of filamentous fungi as hosts of recombinant proteins was their common ability to produce homologous proteases which could degrade the heterologous protein product and strategies to prevent proteolysis have met with some limited success. It was also recognized that the protein glycosylation patterns in filamentous fungi and in mammals were quite different, such that filamentous fungi are likely not to be the most suitable microbial hosts for production of recombinant human glycoproteins for therapeutic use. By combining the experience gained from production of single recombinant proteins with new scientific information being generated through genomics and proteomics research, biotechnologists are now poised to extend the biomanufacturing capabilities of recombinant filamentous fungi by enabling them to express genes encoding multiple proteins, including, for example, new biosynthetic pathways for production of new primary or secondary metabolites. It is recognized that filamentous fungi, most species of which have not yet been isolated, represent an enormously diverse source of novel biosynthetic pathways, and that the natural fungal host harboring a valuable biosynthesis pathway may often not be the most suitable organism for biomanufacture purposes. Hence it is expected that substantial effort will be directed to transforming other fungal hosts, non-fungal microbial hosts and indeed non microbial hosts to express some of these novel biosynthetic pathways. But future applications of recombinant expression of proteins will not be confined to biomanufacturing. Opportunities to exploit recombinant technology to unravel the causes of the deleterious impacts of fungi, for example as human, mammalian and plant pathogens, and then to bring forward solutions, is expected to represent a very important future focus of fungal recombinant protein technology.
Biotechnology Advances – Elsevier
Published: Sep 1, 2012
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