Genomic Engineering Group / InteLAB
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Monday, 30 May 2016
Metabolic Flux Analysis Tools PDF Print

*       Metabolic Flux Analysis MATLAB® Toolbox

Quantification of the magnitude of each cellular flux was always an important objective in metabolic engineering, mostly concerned with commercial and scientific metabolite production. A powerful tool for flux rate determinations in metabolic pathways is the metabolic flux analysis (MFA). Using MFA one may calculate intracellular flux rates, starting from a stoichiometric model for the various intracellular reactions and mass balances. However, MFA by itself does not supply any quantitative information on the control of fluxes, an important goal for keeping the rates of synthesis and conversion over a great range of external conditions. Besides, the understanding of the flux controls is important for the rational modification of metabolic fluxes, which is one of the main objectives of metabolic engineering. Such information is supplied by the metabolic control analysis (MCA). We have built a family of MATLAB® add-on application-specific solutions for solving metabolic engineering problems. MATLAB® toolboxes are comprehensive collections of MATLAB® M-files that extend the MATLAB® environment. The developed package, ME Toolbox, integrates most of the tools and calculations in metabolic flux analysis (MFA) and metabolic control analysis (MCA). The current version of the ME Toolbox allows calculation of intracellular fluxes, improvement of fluxes by statistical reconciliation, and to perform sensitivity analysis, metabolic flux analysis using isotope labeling methods, and metabolic control analysis for linear and branched pathways. Those techniques embrace a great range of possibilities in metabolic engineering. The ME Toolbox was applied for hydrogen production by Clostridium butyricum, an interesting candidate substitute for carbon based fuel, and for violacein production by Chromobacterium violaceum, a violet pigment that presents antimicrobial, antiviral and anticancer activities.

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