Biosynthesis and Properties of Sulfur-Containing Polyhydroxyalkanoates (PHAs) Produced by Wild-Type Strain Cupriavidus necator B-10646

Natalia O. Zhila 1,2,*,Kristina Yu. Sapozhnikova 1,2ORCID,Arina V. Berezovskaya 2,Evgeniy G. Kiselev 1,2ORCID,Ekaterina I. Shishatskaya 1,3ORCID,Aleksander D. Vasiliev 4,5,Sabu Thomas 2,6 andTatiana G. Volova// Polymers//

The study addresses the growth of the wild-type strain Cupriavidus necator B-10646 and the synthesis of sulfur-containing polyhydroxyalkanoates (PHA) by this strain on media containing fructose and three different precursors (3-mercaptopropionic acid, 3′,3′-dithiodipropionic acid and 3′,3′-thiodipropionic acid). By varying the concentration and number of doses of the precursors added into the bacterial culture, it was possible to find conditions that ensure the formation of 3-mercaptopropionate (3MP) monomers from the precursors and their incorporation into the C-chain of poly(3-hydroxybutyrate). A series of P(3HB-co-3MP) copolymer samples with different content of 3MP monomers (from 2.04 to 39.0 mol.%) were synthesized and the physicochemical properties were studied. The effect of 3MP monomers is manifested in a certain decrease in the molecular weight of the samples and an increase in polydispersity. Temperature changes are manifested in the appearance of two peaks in the melting region with different intervals regardless of the 3MP content. The studied P(3HB-co-3MP) samples, regardless of the content of 3MP monomers, are characterized by equalization of the ratio of the amorphous and crystalline phases and have a close degree of crystallinity with a minimum of 42%, = and a maximum of 54%.