The demonstration more than a decade ago that glycoproteins could be produced in Escherichia coli cells equipped with the N-linked protein glycosylation machinery from Campylobacter jejuni opened the door to using simple bacteria for the expression and engineering of complex glycoproteins. Since that time, metabolic engineering has played an increasingly important role in developing and optimizing microbial cell glyco-factories for the production of diverse glycoproteins and other glycoconjugates. It is becoming clear that future progress in creating efficient glycoprotein expression platforms in bacteria will depend on the adoption of advanced strain engineering strategies such as rational design and assembly of orthogonal glycosylation pathways, genome-wide identification of metabolic engineering targets, and evolutionary engineering of pathway performance. Here, we highlight recent advances in the deployment of metabolic engineering tools and strategies to develop microbial cell glyco-factories for the production of high-value glycoprotein targets with applications in research and medicine.

You do not currently have access to this content.