A U.S. Patent for “Performance Enhancing Genetic Variants of E. coli” was awarded to the Regents of the University of California on January 8th, 2019. The present invention provides mutant Escherichia coli cells that contain one or more mutations in one or more of the rpoB, hns/tdk, corA, ygaZ, iap, metL, ygeW, and pyrE/rph genes (exemplified in Table 2A and 2B), which confer on the mutant in minimal media the phenotype of increased level of growth and/or increased glucose uptake rate and/or increased acetate production rate and/or increased biomass yield, compared to a control E. coli (such as wild type E. coli) that lacks the one or more mutations in the one or more genes. Learn More