Screening for microbial secondary metabolites (SMs) has attracted the attention of the scientific community since 1940s. In fact, since the discovery of penicillin, intensive researches have been conducted worldwide in order to detect and identify novel microbial secondary metabolites. As a result, the discovery of novel SMs has been decreased significantly by using traditional experiments. Therefore, searching for new techniques to discover novel SMs was one of the most priority objectives. However, the development and advances of omics-based techniques such as metabolomics and genomics have revealed the potential of discovering novel SMs which were coded in the microorganisms’ DNA but not expressed in the lab media or might be produced in undetectable amount by detecting the biosynthesis gene clusters (BGCs) that are associated with the biosynthesis of secondary metabolites. Nowadays, the development and integration of gene editing tools such as CRISPR-Cas9 in metabolomics provide a successful platform for the identification and detection of known and novel SMs and also to increase the production of SMs.
Part of the book: Extremophilic Microbes and Metabolites