Cephalosporin C Production from Acremonium chrysogenum


Cephalosporin C demand is increasing worldwide because of its enhanced antibacterial spectrum that it can be used to treat diseases and infections caused by Gram positive/or Gram negative bacterial strains. Cephalosporin C is easily produced from the fungus Acremonium chrysogenum by the process of fermentation in a bioreactor under optimum reaction conditions to obtain maximum yield of the antibiotic. Additional chemical and structural modifications in the existing cephalosporin C could further enhance its antimicrobial spectrum.

Acremonium chrysogenum also known as Cephalosporium acremonium is the industrial producer of the antibiotic cephalosporin C, a beta-lactam antibiotic. Today cephalosporin and its derivatives are widely use in the treatment of number of infectious diseases caused by bacteria in the respiratory tract, infections of skin and infections of urinary tract. Cephalosporin C is one of the major biotechnological products with a total world market of about $10 billion. Нe genus Acremonium is a polyphyletic taxon containing distantly related fungi including species associated with atleast three or four ascomycete orders. Different strains of Cephalosporium species such as Emericellopsis, Paecilomyces, chrysogenum, S. clavuligerus etc is used for the production of cephalosporin antibiotic. Acremonium chrysogenum is naturally found in soil, organic matter and plant debris and overgrows in humid environment forming grey and white colonies of loose interwoven hyphae.


Reproduction in Acremonium chrysogenum is strictly asexual by means of conidiophores and arthrospores. However, no associated teleomorphic state showing sexual propagation has been found. Microscopic study revealed that its hyphae is separated holding unbranched erect phialides that are positioned directly at its tips. Its conidia appeared to be unicellular and hyaline. Four diوٴerent morphological forms of the fungi Acremonium chrysogenum has been reported during fermentation such as swollen hyphal fragments, Conidia, hyphae and arthrospores which are metabolically inactive.

Cephalosporin C: Cephalosporin c is a popular antibiotic because of its excellent characteristics such as broad spectrum, low toxicity and resistance to beta lactamase than penicillin.

Chemical structure: Нe molecular formula of cephalosporin c shows that it consists of 16 C-atoms, 21 H-atoms, 3 N-atoms, 8 Oatoms and 1 S-atoms. It consists of a beta lactam ring, six membered sulphur containing dihydrothiazine ring and an acyl side chain with a R group. This substitute group is responsible for giving cephalosporin different level of spectrum activity. Molecular weight of cephalosporin C is 415.42 g/mol with UV absorption of 260 nm.

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