Organic Chemistry

Heterologous Biosynthesis and Genomics-Driven Derivatization of Fungal Bioactive Sesterterpenoid Variecolin

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Abstract

The biosynthetic gene cluster of fungal bioactive sesterterpenoids, variecolin (1) and variecolactone (2), was identified in Aspergillus aculeatus ATCC 16872. Heterologous production of 1 and 2 was achieved in Aspergillus oryzae by expressing the sesterterpene synthase VrcA and the cytochrome P450 VrcB. Intriguingly, the replacement of VrcB with homologous P450s from other fungal terpenoid pathways yielded three new variecolin analogues, one of which exhibited potent anticancer activity comparable to that of 1.

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Supplementary material

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Supporting Information
Experimental details and supplementary tables and figures