Identification and heterologous expression of the biosynthetic gene cluster for holomycin produced by Streptomyces clavuligerus

Sheng Huang, Yudong Zhao, Zhiwei Qin, Xiaoling Wang, Mayca Onega, Li Chen, Jing He* (Corresponding Author), Yi Yu* (Corresponding Author), Hai Deng* (Corresponding Author)

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

27 Citations (Scopus)


Holomycin is a dithiolopyrrolone antibiotic natural product produced by Streptomyces clavuligerus, ATCC 27064. This paper reports on the identification of a gene cluster from S. clavuligerus that directs holomycin biosynthesis. Heterologous expression of the cluster in S. albus then induced the production of holomycin. Bioinformatics analysis of the gene cluster revealed that holomycin was assembled by a single multidomain non-ribosomal peptide synthetase (NRPS) consisting of heterocyclization, adenylation, and thiolation domains (Cy-A-T), a free-standing condensation domain, two thioesterases, five tailoring enzymes involved in oxidative reactions and two regulatory and transcriptional genes. Knock out of the gene, HomI, completely abolished the production of holomycin, which is consistent with its role as a key biosynthetic gene and is likely involved in the formation of the disulfide bond generating the final precursor, holothin.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)811-816
Number of pages6
JournalProcess Biochemistry
Issue number3
Early online date8 Dec 2010
Publication statusPublished - Mar 2011

Bibliographical note

YY thanks Professor Meifeng Tao for providing the strain Streptomyces clavuligerus, ATCC 27064. YY was supported by the Fundamental Research Funds for the Central Universities, China (Grant No. 52204-09064) and the “Dawn” Program of Wuhan Science and Technology Bureau for Young Scholars, China (Grant No. 4006-106016). HD thanks the School of Natural and Computing Sciences, University of Aberdeen for a Ph.D. studentship (XLW) and Drs A. Raab and Rainer Ebel for High resolution LC–MS analysis.


  • Dithiolopyrrolone
  • Holomycin
  • NRPS
  • Heterologous expression
  • Biosynthesis


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