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System and method for gene expression in thermus strains

United States Patent Application

View the Complete Application at the US Patent & Trademark Office
A method for producing beta-carotene and carotene-related pigments in which a plurality of thermophilic microorganisms is collected and screened for the production of pigments. Those pigment-producing thermophilic microorganisms having yellow, red or orange coloration are identified and separated from the collection of thermophilic microorganisms. Thereafter, the selected pigment-producing thermophilic microorganisms are mutated by non-recombinant means to enhance pigment production, forming a mutant pigment-producing thermophilic microorganism. In accordance with one embodiment of this invention, a gene of interest suitable for producing a protein of interest is introduced into the mutant pigment-producing thermophilic microorganism, resulting in over-production of the carotene pigment and the protein of interest. Also disclosed are suitable plasmids and expression vectors suitable for use in the method of this invention.
Kayser, Kevin J. (Woodstock, IL), Kilbane, John J. II (Woodstock, IL)
10/ 086,105
February 28, 2002
[0001] This invention was made with Government support under Prime Contract No. DE-FG02-97ER62464 awarded by the Department of Energy. The Government has certain rights in this invention.