Developing an effective approach for microbial biosynthesis of hydroxyhydroquinone

Yuxin Liu, James Caruso, Haoran Zhang

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Hydroxyhydroquinone (HHQ) is an aromatic triol with important biological activities and values. In this work, we achieved de novo HHQ bioproduction using glucose as the substrate. First, we established a cultivation method to address the issue of HHQ degradation in an aqueous solution. Second, an artificial biosynthesis pathway was constituted in E. coli to enable the conversion of glucose to HHQ via 4-hydroxybenzoate. Moreover, microbial co-culture engineering techniques were utilized to modularize the biosynthesis pathway and improve the HHQ production to 64 mg/L within 48 h. To our knowledge, this is the first report of heterologous biosynthesis of HHQ using a microbial host. The findings of this work lay a solid foundation for future efforts in microbial bioproduction of HHQ and related biochemicals.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number107929
JournalBiochemical Engineering Journal
StatePublished - Apr 2021

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Biotechnology
  • Bioengineering
  • Environmental Engineering
  • Biomedical Engineering


  • De novo biosynthesis
  • E. coli
  • Hydroxyhydroquinone
  • Modular co-culture engineering


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