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Diversity Analysis of Pathways for PKS and PKS-NRPS in Metagenomic Libraries

Grant number: 11/12025-2
Support Opportunities:Scholarships in Brazil - Scientific Initiation
Effective date (Start): September 01, 2011
Effective date (End): December 31, 2012
Field of knowledge:Biological Sciences - Microbiology - Applied Microbiology
Principal Investigator:Eliana Gertrudes de Macedo Lemos
Grantee:Bruna Castro
Host Institution: Faculdade de Ciências Agrárias e Veterinárias (FCAV). Universidade Estadual Paulista (UNESP). Campus de Jaboticabal. Jaboticabal , SP, Brazil


The soil has great diversity of microorganisms. This group is known for its ability to produce many secondary compounds, among them highlight the production of antibiotics, that have a great pharmacological importance. However, its not possible access the full biotechnological potential of the microbiota, because the cultivation methods used in laboratories usually select microorganisms. Thus, the vast majority of soil bacteria, about 99%, cannot be isolated or grown in culture media, since they have such complex needs that cannot be reproduced artificially. Because of this, Metagenomics, the genomic analysis of unculturable microorganisms, allows wider access to genetic and biochemical potential of the microbiota. It allows the description of the metabolism of unknown bacteria, development of phylogenetic hypotheses, studies of ecological relationships, analysis of biodiversity, besides the discovery of unknown microorganisms and the development of new bioactive compounds. Among the biomolecules known, can highlight the polyketide antibiotics, which are biosynthesized by enzymatic groups called Polyketide Synthases (PKS), that may be types I, II and III, in addition to hybrid PKS-NRPS pathways, that include enzymes clustered with PKS pathways "nonribosomal peptide synthetases", responsible for the synthesis of amino acids linked to special polyketides. This research project aims to analyze the diversity of new pathways for antibiotic PKSs systems I, II and PKS-NRPS in metagenomic libraries, employing polimerase chain reaction technique.

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