Escherichia coli as a host for metabolic engineering

Sammy Pontrelli, Tsan Yu Chiu, Ethan I. Lan, Frederic Y.H. Chen, Peiching Chang, James C. Liao*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

79 Scopus citations


Over the past century, Escherichia coli has become one of the best studied organisms on earth. Features such as genetic tractability, favorable growth conditions, well characterized biochemistry and physiology, and availability of versatile genetic manipulation tools make E. coli an ideal platform host for development of industrially viable productions. In this review, we discuss the physiological attributes of E. coli that are most relevant for metabolic engineering, as well as emerging techniques that enable efficient phenotype construction. Further, we summarize the large number of native and non-native products that have been synthesized by E. coli, and address some of the future challenges in broadening substrate range and fighting phage infection.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)16-46
Number of pages31
JournalMetabolic Engineering
StatePublished - 1 Nov 2018

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