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Descripción: analysis of how transformation occurs
By: Bijaya Kumar Uprety 1
Biot Biotrrans ansforma ormattions ions (bio (biocconv onversi ersion on or micr microb obia iall tran transf sfor orma mati tion on)) refer eferss to the the proc proces esse sess in whic which h micr microo oorrganis anisms ms con convert ert org organic anic compo ompoun unds ds into into structurally structurally related products. In other word, biotransformation deals with microbial microbial (enzymatic (enzymatic)) conversi conversion on of a substrate substrate into into a product with limited number (one or few ) enzymatic reactions.
This is in contrast to fermentation which involves a large number reactions. 2
The significance significance of bioconv bioconversi ersion on reactions becomes becomes obvious when when the the prod produc ucti tion on of a part partic icul ular ar compo ompoun und d is eith either er difficult or costly by chemical methods. Furt Furthe herr biot biotrrans ansforma ormati tion onss are are gener nerall ally pre preferr erred to chemical reactions because of substrate specificity, stereospecificity, ty, and mixed reacti actio on conditions (pH, temperature, pressure). The The envi enviro ronme nment ntal al poll polluti ution on due due to biot biotra rans nsfformat ormatio ion n is almost insignificant or negligible. In addition, it is easy to apply recombinant recombinant DNA technology to make desired improvements in biotransformations. biotransformations. Another advanta advantage ge of biotransfor biotransformati mations ons is that it is easy to scale up the process due to limited number of reactions. 3
Types of Biotransformation reactions •
Many types of chemical reactions occur in biotransformations. These include oxidation, reduction, hydrolysis, condensation, isomerization, formation of new C-C bonds, synthesis of chiral compounds and reversal of hydrolytic reactions. Among these, oxidation, isomerisation and hydrolysis reactions are more commonly obser
Many a times biotransformation involves more than one type of reactions. The conversion time required for biotransformation is related to the type of reaction, the substrate concentration and the mo’s used. In general oxidation, hydrolysis and dehydration reactions are completed in few hours.
Sources of Biocatalysts and techniques for biotransformation •
A wide variety of biological catalysts can be used for biotransformation reactions. Includes:
The desired cells are cultivated in a suitable medium. As the growth of the cells occurs (6-24 hours), a concentrated substrate is added to the culture.
Sometimes, addition of emulsifiers (Tween, organic solvents) is required to solubilize substrates and/or products eg. Steroid biotrasformation. The substrate conversion to product can be monitored by spectroscopic or chromatographic techniques. Biotransformation can be terminated when the product formation is optimum. 7
Non-growing cells These are preferred for biotransformation rxn due to following reasons: Very high concentration of substrate can be used ( high conc growth of cells stops usually) Cells can be washed and used thus there will be no contaminating substances. Conversion efficiency of substrate to product is high. Biotransformation can be optimised by creating suitable environmental condition (eg pH, temp). Product isolation and its recovery is easy. •
Immobilized cells •
Biotransformation can be carried out continuously by employing immobilized cells. Further, the same cells could be used for numerous time. Several bioconversion with single or multistage reaction are in fact carried out by using immobilized cells. Eg.commercial production of L-analine and malic acid.
Immobilized enzymes •
Cell-free enzyme systems in the form of immobilized enzymes are most commonly used in biotransformation, due to following reasons:
No undesirable side reaction. Desired
products are not degraded.
transport barrier across the cell membrane for the substrate or product.
and recovery of the product is simpler and easier.
Eg. Glucose isomerase, penicillin acylase. 10
Product recovery in biotransformation •
In most biotrasformation reactions, the desired end products are extracellular. The product may be either in a soluble or suspended state. When whole cells are used, they have to be separated and repeatedly washed with water or organic solvent as required. The extracted product can be recovered by employing the commonly used techniques- precipitation by salts, extraction with solvents, adsorption to ion-exchangers, etc. Volatile products could be recovered by direct distillation from the medium.
Biotransformation of steroids
A steroid is a type of organic compound that contains a characteristic arrangement of four cycloalkane rings that are joined to each other.
Design of biotransformation process •
It has been adequately observed that the most crucial and pivotal biotransformation processes are designed and based upon a variety of chemical reactions which may be classified under several categories, such as : (a) oxidation ; (b) reduction ; (c) hydrolysis ; (d) condensation ; (e) isomerization ; (f) formation of newer C –C bonds ; and (h) introduction of hetero functional moieties. In general, the various kinds of biotransformation processes involving typical chemical reactions along with certain specific examples and the percentage efficiency of conversion are summarized in the following. A possible explanation of the reaction(s) involved has been included in order to have a better understanding of these chemical pathways. Biotransformation designs have been accomplished with tremendous success for a large number of compounds, namely : cardiac glycoside ‘digoxin’, acetyltropine, benzylisoquinoline etc. So far, the various typical examples that have been cited in the below table are exclusively related to a variety of chemical reactions in the presence of microorganisms.
In addition to the above remarkable explicit examples it has been amply demonstrated and adequately substantiated scientifically that ‘plant cells’ are also capable of transforming a wide range of substrates ; and, therefore, carry out a large number of reaction(s), for instance : oxidation, hydroxylation, reduction, methylation, glucosylation, acetylation, aminoacylation and the like.
For example: 1. Glycosylation of salicylic acid by the cultures of Mallotus japonica yields a product that possesses an appreciable high analgesic activity, and also exhibits excellent better tolerance in the stomach in comparison to acetylsalicylic acid (i.e., aspirin). 2. Transformation of Steviol (aglucon) into Stevioside (glucoside) : The transformation of Steviol (i.e., hydroxydehydrostevic acid) by the cells of Stevia rebaudiana (Bert.) Hemsl. (Eupatorium rebaudianum Bert.) Compositae, also called yerba dulce (Habitat : Paraguay), into a glucoside known as stevioside which is proved to be 300 times sweeter than sucrose, and hence used as a sweetner. •
Methodologies for biotransformation •
A variety of substances, namely : growing cultures, resting cells, immobilized cells, spores, enzymes, and immobilized enzyme systems may be employed overwhelmingly in the microbial biotransformation of a plethora of organic compounds. A few specific methodologies involving growing cultures, resting cells, and immobilized cells shall be discussed individually in the next slides: 20
1. Growing Cultures •
The methodologies that are intimately associated with growing cultures essentially involve the strain that are cultivated in an appropriate culture medium, and subsequently a concentrated substrated solution is usually incorporated after an appreciable growth of the culture after a lapse of 6 to 24 hours. A few noteworthy variants of this particular procedure are as stated below : (a) Usage of a relatively very large inoculum, (b) Incorporating the concentrated substrate immediately without permitting, a growth phase to commence, (c) Usage of ‘emulsifiers’ e.g., Tweens (i.e., Tween-20, 40, 60, 80 — synthetic surfectants) or water-miscible solvents e.g., acetone, ethanol, dimethyl formamide (DMF), dimethyl sulphoxide (DMSO) may be employed to aid the dissolution of rather sparingly soluble substances quite conveniently. 21
2. Resting Cells: •
In such critical situations when the enzyme induction afforded by the added substrate is not quite necessary and urgent, resting cells may be employed profusely and effectively. However, the resting cells do offer a tremendous advantage whereby the growth inhibition by the substrate is eliminated completely. Besides, the presence of high-cell densities that essentially promote an enhanced level of productivity may be employed; simultaneously, the very risk of any possible scope of contamination is minimised appreciably. Interestingly, there are several biotransformation reactions that exclusively and predominantly take place in the ‘buffer solution’ and this eventually renders the ultimate recovery of the ‘desired product’ relatively easy and convenient. 22
3. Immobilized Cells •
In more recent times, a host of biotransformation methodologies do make use of the immobilized cells thus affording the biggest even advantageous plus point that the process could be carried out simultaneously; besides, the cells might be employed over and over again. Applications : In actual practice, the immobilized bacterial cells that invariably catalyze either single-stage reaction or multi-stage reaction, are presently exploited in the large-scale production of L-alanine, aspartic acid, and malic acid.
Selection of organism •
The selection of strains either from its natural sources or from the various available cultures which are solely responsible for catalyzing the desired biotransformation reaction(s) is not only vital and critical but also of great importance. It has been observed that there are quite a few microorganisms that usually carry out the desired bioconversions with the help of a related chemical entity. In steroid one may encounter a rather difficult problem due to the lack of selective methods so as to identify the colonies precisely which usually perform the appropriate specific activity. 24
1. Modified Enrichment Method : •
The modified enrichment method is invariably used for the isolation of mutants blocked in the substrate dissimilation mechanism. In this specific instance, a steroid substrate is normally incorporated as the sole C-source exclusively in a ‘minimal medium’ seeded adequately with the soil dilutions. The cells that causes the degradation of the substrate will ultimately grow ; and are, therefore, subsequently transferred to the same medium but particularly enriched with another C-source, for instance : glucose. However, the mutants may be present which are strategically blocked at different stages in the process of degradation of the steroid substrate, but may consume glucose as the C-source. It has been profusely established and reported that a fairly large number of microbial strains viz., eubacteria, yeasts, molds, and streptomycetes may be stored and maintained strictly as per the recommended ‘standard methods’, such as : agar slant, soil culture, frozen culture, and lypholized culture preserved at temperatures ranging between – 20°C to – 170°C.
Besides, the resulting intermediates may get accumulated, whereas the lesion-bearing mutants can be isolated conveniently. Furthermore, mutants may also be isolated which are incapable of accumulating an ‘undesirable compound’.
2. Filtration Enrichment Method : •
In this case, after mutagenesis the spores of filamentous organisms e.g., actinomycetes, fungi, are made to develop in a liquid minimal medium. The microcolonies of prototrophs thus developed are meticulously separated by filtration, whereby the spores of auxotrophs that were unable to grow left behind in the filtrate.
The filtrate obtained in this manner in subsequently plated and the resulting colonies are adequately checked for auxotrophic characteristics.
3. Penicillin-Selection Procedure : •
In penicillin-selection procedure the prevailing growing cells are killed selectively by the ‘antibiotic’ treatment, thereby enriching the auxotrophs that are incapable of growing upon the ‘minimal medium’ . Thus, exclusively based upon their mode of action a plethora of ‘inhibitors’ other than penicillin may also be employed effectively in this procedure, namely dihydrostreptomycin for Pseudomonas aeruginosa ; nystalin for Hansenula polymorpha, Penicillium chrysogenum, Aspergillus nidulans, and Saccharomyces cerevisiae ; nalidix acid for Salmonella typhimurium ; colistin for the penicillin-resistant Hydrogenomonas strain H16.
4. Sodium Pentachlorophenolate : The salt sodium pentachlorophenolate also affords enrichment procedure by virtue of its greater toxicity particularly against the ‘germinating spores’ in comparison to the ‘vegetative cells’ .
Example : The above method has been successfully applied with several organisms, such as : Penicillium chrysogenum ; Streptomyces aureofaciens ; Streptomyces olivaceus ; and Bacillus subtilis. 28
5. Spraying with Reagents (or Incorporating Indicator Dyes) :
One may observe either the presence or absence of specific enzyme activities almost directly in the colonies that are allowed to grown on plates by employing either of the two available common procedures, namely : (a) spraying with appropriate reagents ; and (b) incorporating indicator-dyes right into the culture medium. 6. Inhibition of Assay Organisms : In this specific instance the antibioticallyactive compounds may be detected quite easily and conveniently by measuring the inhibition of sensitive assay organisms. This procedure allows the precise determination (assay) of the ‘antibiotic content’ of an unknown
solution using a reference standard simultaneously. 7. Agar Plug Method : The agar plug method is regarded to be one of the most reliable and precise techniques wherein the agar cylinders having ‘single-colonies’ are transferred to test plates after due incubation preferably in a moist chamber as depicted in figure given below :