Trends in bacterial trehalose metabolism and significant nodes of metabolic pathway in the direction of trehalose accumulation


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The current knowledge of trehalose biosynthesis under stress conditions is incomplete and needs further research. Since trehalose finds industrial and pharmaceutical applications, enhanced accumulation of trehalose in bacteria seems advantageous for commercial production. Moreover, physiological role of trehalose is a key to generate stress resistant bacteria by metabolic engineering. Although trehalose biosynthesis requires few metabolites and enzyme reactions, it appears to have a more complex metabolic regulation. Trehalose biosynthesis in bacteria is known through three pathways – OtsAB, TreYZ and TreS. The interconnections of in vivo synthesis of trehalose, glycogen or maltose were most interesting to investigate in recent years. Further, enzymes at different nodes (glucose-6-P, glucose-1-P and NDP-glucose) of metabolic pathways influence enhancement of trehalose accumulation. Most of the study of trehalose biosynthesis was explored in medically significant Mycobacterium, research model Escherichia coli, industrially applicable Corynebacterium and food and probiotic interest Propionibacterium freudenreichii. Therefore, the present review dealt with the trehalose metabolism in these bacteria. In addition, an effort was made to recognize how enzymes at different nodes of metabolic pathway can influence trehalose accumulation.