Enabling Biomanufacturing Through Multiple Microbial Hosts

The Science

A new technology that allows synthetic biologists to domesticate any bacterial host and, in a single step, successfully and efficiently insert constructs.

The Impact

DOE’s Joint Genome Institute (JGI) developed a chassis-independent recombinase-assisted genome engineering (CRAGE) tool that allowed inserts from 10 kilo base pairs (Kbp) up to 48 Kbp on nearly 30 gammaproteobacteria species.


CRAGE saves time as constructs can be inserted in a single step in one day instead of having serial inserts over several days. Novel secondary metabolites not normally produced by the hosts were uncovered. Secondary metabolites are the basis for hundreds of invaluable agricultural, industrial, and medical products. CRAGE can be adapted to other organisms such as fungi and archaea.


Wang G. et al. “CRAGE enables rapid activation of biosynthetic gene clusters in undomesticated bacteria.” Nature Microbiology 4, 2498–2510 (2019). DOI:10.1038/s41564-019-0573-8.