Columbia University

Technology Ventures

Modified bacterial strains for improved protein production efficiency

Technology #cu15280

This technology describes modified bacterial strains that can be used for high levels of protein expression.

Unmet Need: Improved recombinant protein production in bacteria

The ability to produce large quantities of protein is essential to both basic research and the biotechnology industry. Genetically modified E. coli strains are a popular method for mass protein production; however, existing E. coli strains often produce low yields of foreign or unstable proteins. As such, there is a need for a method that increases protein yields and allows foreign proteins to be reliably produced.

The Technology: Deletion of key proteases increases protein production in bacteria

This technology describes a set of modified E. coli strains in which one or more proteases has been deleted or mutated, significantly enhancing protein production. Altering expression of endogenous proteases prevents the overproduced protein from being degraded, increasing yields. By increasing protein production, this technology promises to greatly reduce the time and costs associated with bioproduction of proteins.

This technology has been used to produce Sumo-NunDN protein in a 10-fold higher yield than the commercial BL21(DE3) system.


  • Protein production
  • Therapeutic probiotics
  • Bioproduction of materials


  • Higher protein yield
  • Ability to produce foreign or unstable proteins
  • More efficient method for mass protein production

Lead Inventor:

Maxwell E. Gottesman, M.D., Ph.D

Patent Information:

Patent Pending (WO/2017/058884)

Related Publications:

Tech Ventures Reference: