Bioproduction of (Z,E)-9,12-tetradecadienyl acetate (ZETA), the major pheromone component of Plodia, Ephestia, and Spodoptera species in yeast

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Bioproduction of ZETA pheromone
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BACKGROUND: (Z,E)-9,12-tetradecadienyl acetate (ZETA, Z9,E12-14:OAc) is a major sex pheromone component for many stored-product moth species. This pheromone is used worldwide for mating disruption, detection, monitoring, and mass trap-ping in raw and processed food storage facilities. In this study, we demonstrate the biological production of ZETA pheromone by engineered yeast saccharomyces cerevisiae. RESULTS: We mined the pheromone gland transcriptome data of the almond moth, Ephestia(Cadra)cautella(Walker), to trace a novel E12 fatty acyl desaturase and expressed candidates heterologously in yeast and Sf9 systems. Furthermore, we demonstrated a tailor-made ZETA pheromone bioproduction in yeast through metabolic engineering using this E12 desaturase, in combination with three genes from various sources coding for a Z9 desaturase, a fatty acyl reductase, and an acetyltransferase, respectively. Electrophysiological assays (gas chromatography coupled to an electroantennographic detector) proved that the transgenic yeast-produced ZETA pheromone component elicits distinct antennal responses. CONCLUSION: The reconstructed biosynthetic pathway in yeast efficiently produces ZETA pheromone, leaves an undetectable level of biosynthetic intermediates, and paves the way for the economically competitive high-demand ZETA pheromone's bio-production technology for high-value storage pest control.