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Open Access Method

A high-throughput approach to identify genomic variants of bacterial metabolite producers at the single-cell level

Stephan Binder, Georg Schendzielorz, Norma Stäbler, Karin Krumbach, Kristina Hoffmann, Michael Bott and Lothar Eggeling*

Author Affiliations

Institut für Bio- und Geowissenschaften, IBG-1: Biotechnologie, Forschungszentrum Jülich GmbH, D-52425 Jülich, Germany

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Genome Biology 2012, 13:R40  doi:10.1186/gb-2012-13-5-r40

Published: 28 May 2012

Abstract

We present a novel method for visualizing intracellular metabolite concentrations within single cells of Escherichia coli and Corynebacterium glutamicum that expedites the screening process of producers. It is based on transcription factors and we used it to isolate new L-lysine producing mutants of C. glutamicum from a large library of mutagenized cells using fluorescence-activated cell sorting (FACS). This high-throughput method fills the gap between existing high-throughput methods for mutant generation and genome analysis. The technology has diverse applications in the analysis of producer populations and screening of mutant libraries that carry mutations in plasmids or genomes.