Biosynthesis of lipids

  • Georges N. Cohen


During the late 1930s, Barker isolated an anaerobic bacterium which he called Clostridium kluyveri. This organism is able to grow on a mixture of acetate and ethanol and produces n-butyrate and n-caproate. From this organism, Barker and Stadtman obtained cell-free extracts which could carry the reactions leading to the C4 and C6 acids. Ethanol is oxidized to acetic acid in two steps, respectively, catalyzed by alcohol dehydrogenase and an acetaldehyde dehydrogenase depending on the presence of coenzyme A:


Fatty Acid Synthesis Acyl Carrier Protein Fatty Acid Synthetase Cyclopropane Fatty Acid Biotin Carboxylase 
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Selected references

Short chain fatty acid synthesis

  1. H. A. Barker, Bacterial fermentations, Ciba Lectures in Microbial Biochemistry, John Wiley and Sons, New York, 95 pp. (1956).Google Scholar

Fatty acid synthesis and its regulation

  1. E. Schweitzer, in Multifunctional proteins, 197–215, H. Bisswanger, E. Schmincke-Ott, eds., John Wiley and Sons, New York (1980).Google Scholar
  2. S. J. Wakil, J. K. Stoops, V. C. Joshi, Ann. Rev. Biochem., 52, 537–579 (1983).PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  3. N. Singh, S. J. Wakil, J. K. Stoops, Biochemistry, 24, 6598–6602 (1985).CrossRefGoogle Scholar

Cyclopropane fatty acid synthetase

  1. A. Y. Wang, D. W. Grogan, J. E. Cronan, Jr., Biochemistry, 31, 11020–11028 (1992).CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  2. J. Eichel, Y. Y. Chang, D. Riesenberg,J. E. Cronan, Jr., J Bacteriol., 181, 572–576 (1999).PubMedGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht 2004

Authors and Affiliations

  • Georges N. Cohen
    • 1
    • 2
  1. 1.Centre National de la Recherche ScientifiqueParisFrance
  2. 2.Institut PasteurParisFrance

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