Post Here: Definition Topic/Audiences/Exigence > Increasing Cellulose Digestion in Cattle with cel-1 Recombinant E. coli

My final paper will be a research proposal aimed at molecular biologists interested in using recombinant DNA to modify animals. Potential investors of the project will also benefit from reading this paper.

I am proposing to reduce the cost of cattle care and increase meat and milk production by improving the efficiency of cattle feed utilization through genetic engineering of bacteria found naturally in the cow rumen. Cellulase production in cattle can be increased by utilizing a microbe with the natural ability to degrade cellulose. Streptomyces reticuli is an organism that possesses this function due to its ability to produce a cellulase enzyme. This cellulase enzyme is specifically produced by the cel-1 gene contained within Streptomyces reticuli. By inserting the cel-1 gene from Streptomyces reticuli into an E. coli bacterium (E. coli is naturally found in cow rumen), we are able to give the cow rumen the ability to more efficiently utilize feed.

The normal organisms in a cow’s rumen produce cellulase enzymes via fermentation processes. These enzymes hydrolyze cellulose into its fundamental building blocks, which are then used by cattle for energy. However, energy intake is impaired because of the poor digestion capabilities of natural rumen bacteria. Due to this poor feed utilization, farmers are forced to feed their cattle excess amounts of food which can be a significant cost burden. Additionally, it can reduce the efficiency of meat and milk production. Since the United States is the world's largest producer of cow meat (equivalent to $105 billion annually) methods to improve the efficiency and cost of production are of utmost importance.
May 1, 2017 | Unregistered CommenterAishu Raveesh