Asymmetric reduction of ketones using recombinant E. coli cells that produce a versatile carbonyl reductase with high enantioselectivity and broad substrate specificity

Tadashi Ema, Hideo Yagasaki, Nobuyasu Okita, Masahiro Takeda, Takashi Sakai

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

73 Citations (Scopus)


The gene encoding a versatile biocatalyst that shows high enantioselectivity for a variety of ketones, SCR (Saccharomyces cerevisiae carbonyl reductase), has been identified, cloned, and expressed in Escherichia coli. Two types of expression systems with high NADPH-regenerating capacities have been constructed. One is the tandem system, where the genes encoding SCR and GDH (glucose dehydrogenase) are located in the same plasmid, and the other is the two-plasmid system, where each of the SCR and GDH genes is located in separate plasmids that can coexist in one E. coli cell. Asymmetric reduction of ketones with the recombinant E. coli cells gave synthetically useful 20 alcohols, 11 of which were enantiomerically pure. The productivity of one of these products was as high as 41 g/L.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)6143-6149
Number of pages7
Issue number26
Publication statusPublished - Jun 26 2006



  • Alcohol
  • Asymmetric synthesis
  • Biotransformation
  • Reduction

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biochemistry
  • Organic Chemistry
  • Drug Discovery

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