Individual Technology

Transporter Search Technology

Keietsu ABE
Graduate School of Agriculture, Tohoku University



Intracellular conversion of materials requires the uptake of substrate. In addition, the product cannot be recovered in the medium unless it is discharged out of cells. technology searches for compound transporters, which is important for promoting efficiency in material production.

Research Contents

When a compound is produced using a microorganism, etc., particularly when a membrane-impermeable compound is targeted, the discharge of the product out of the host cell affects the efficiency of production. If the extracellular discharge of the product is delayed, the product accumulates inside the cell, causing negative feedback, leading to the inhibition of the biosynthetic reaction. In such cases, the solution is to express a "transporter," which properly transports the target compound out of the cell, on the cell membrane. In this project, by integrating the information analysis technology owned by the National Institute of Advanced Industrial Science and Technology (AIST) and the transporter search technology developed by Tohoku University, we have developed a technology for searching for transporters of the target compounds while shortening the time required with the conventional transporter search method.

Strengths in the Industrial Arena

Recent advances in genomic analysis have revealed the presence of genes encoding 300 to 1,000 transporters on the genome of living organisms. On the other hand, the functions of many transporter genes remain unknown; even though the search for the efflux transporter of the target compound is attempted based on literature information and genomic information, obtaining the information on the transporter of the target is extremely difficult. This technology has simplified the search for transporters of target compounds, and is expected to improve efficiency in material production.


1) K. Nanatani et al.: Smart Cell Industry, CMC Publishing, (2018)

2) A. Sasahara et al. : J. Biol. Chem., 286, 29044-29052 (2011)

Related Patents

Japanese Patent Application No. 2018-087700

Last updated:December 25, 2023