A DNA segment cloned from ATCC 25489 close to a region that hybridized to a probe containing part of the actinorhodin polyketide synthase caused ATCC 31615 to produce new anthracyclines. When transformed with certain sub-clones of this segment, the host produced glycosides of β-rhodomycinone,β-rhodomycinone, 10-demethoxycarbonylaklavinone and 11-deoxy-β-rhodomycinone in addition to those of aklavinone, the natural anthracyclines of The first two compounds are products and the other two are novel compounds that conceptually are structural hybrids between and products. Three glycosides of one of the novel aglycones, 11-deoxy-β-rhodomycinone, were purified and found to possess cytotoxic activity against L1210 mouse leukaemia cells. Separate regions of the cloned DNA are responsible for modification of the host product at the 10- and 11-positions.


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