Macromolecular crowding explains overflow metabolism in cells

Vazquez, A. and Oltvai, Z. N. (2016) Macromolecular crowding explains overflow metabolism in cells. Scientific Reports, 6, 31007. (doi: 10.1038/srep31007) (PMID:27484619) (PMCID:PMC4971534)

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Overflow metabolism is a metabolic phenotype of cells characterized by mixed oxidative phosphorylation (OxPhos) and fermentative glycolysis in the presence of oxygen. Recently, it was proposed that a combination of a protein allocation constraint and a higher proteome fraction cost of energy generation by OxPhos relative to fermentation form the basis of overflow metabolism in the bacterium, Escherichia coli. However, we argue that the existence of a maximum or optimal macromolecular density is another essential requirement. Here we re-evaluate our previous theory of overflow metabolism based on molecular crowding following the proteomic fractions formulation. We show that molecular crowding is a key factor in explaining the switch from OxPhos to overflow metabolism.

Item Type:Articles
Glasgow Author(s) Enlighten ID:Vazquez, Alexei
Authors: Vazquez, A., and Oltvai, Z. N.
College/School:College of Medical Veterinary and Life Sciences > Institute of Cancer Sciences
Journal Name:Scientific Reports
Publisher:Nature Publishing Group
ISSN (Online):2045-2322
Published Online:03 August 2016
Copyright Holders:Copyright © 2016 The Authors
First Published:First published in Scientific Reports 6: 31007
Publisher Policy:Reproduced under a Creative Commons License

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