Advances in genetic engineering of marine algae

Yantai Institute of Coastal Zone Research, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Yantai 264003, Shandong, China. Electronic address: .
Biotechnology advances (Impact Factor: 9.02). 05/2012; 30(6):1602-13. DOI: 10.1016/j.biotechadv.2012.05.004
Source: PubMed


Algae are a component of bait sources for animal aquaculture, and they produce abundant valuable compounds for the chemical industry and human health. With today's fast growing demand for algae biofuels and the profitable market for cosmetics and pharmaceuticals made from algal natural products, the genetic engineering of marine algae has been attracting increasing attention as a crucial systemic technology to address the challenge of the biomass feedstock supply for sustainable industrial applications and to modify the metabolic pathway for the more efficient production of high-value products. Nevertheless, to date, only a few marine algae species can be genetically manipulated. In this article, an updated account of the research progress in marine algal genomics is presented along with methods for transformation. In addition, vector construction and gene selection strategies are reviewed. Meanwhile, a review on the progress of bioreactor technologies for marine algae culture is also revisited.

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Available from: Hanzhi Lin, Jan 07, 2014
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    • "Many of the methodological tools in Chlamydomonas rely on its efficient transformation system, development of vectors (Kindle, 1990; León-Bañares et al., 2004; Neupert et al., 2012) and the sequencing of its genome (Merchant et al., 2007). In other algae, transformation methodology has been set up (Sun et al., 2006; Lerche and Hallmann, 2009, 2013, 2014; Hirata et al., 2011; Qin et al., 2012; Rathod et al., 2013; Talebi et al., 2013; Yamano et al., 2013), which will allow efficient techniques to appear as in Chlamydomonas. We will refer here to 10 Chlorophytes (using Chlamydomonas as a reference), two Rhodophytes, and a Glaucophyte, for which their genomes are sequenced and available in the public databases. "
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    ABSTRACT: Nitrate assimilation is a key process for nitrogen (N) acquisition in green microalgae. Among Chlorophyte algae, Chlamydomonas reinhardtii has resulted to be a good model system to unravel important facts of this process, and has provided important insights for agriculturally relevant plants. In this work, the recent findings on nitrate transport, nitrate reduction and the regulation of nitrate assimilation are presented in this and several other algae. Latest data have shown nitric oxide (NO) as an important signal molecule in the transcriptional and posttranslational regulation of nitrate reductase and inorganic N transport. Participation of regulatory genes and proteins in positive and negative signaling of the pathway and the mechanisms involved in the regulation of nitrate assimilation, as well as those involved in Molybdenum cofactor synthesis required to nitrate assimilation, are critically reviewed.
    Frontiers in Plant Science 10/2015; 6. DOI:10.3389/fpls.2015.00899 · 3.95 Impact Factor
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    • "protein, carbohydrate and lipid) in algae (Geider and La Roche 2002). Molecular N:P ratios thereby can provide an integrated measure of the ability of nutrient uptake for algal cells (Beardall et al. 2001a; Fresnedo and Serra 1992; Qin et al. 2012). Thus, N limitation usually results in low protein content and high carbohydrate or lipid storage (Shifrin and Chisholm 1981; Ganf et al. 1986) while P limitation can also shift the relative contents of protein, lipid and carbohydrate in algal cells (Theodorou et al. 1991; Reitan et al. 1994). "
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    ABSTRACT: The understanding of how nitrogen (N) to phosphorus (P) ratios regulate growth and chemical composition of algae is important to control the nutritional value of microalgae for industrial application. This study compared the impacts of N:P ratio manipulations on the growth, elements, lipid, fatty acids and protein contents of Tisochrysis lutea and Nannochloropsis oculata. F/2 medium was used as the basal formula to obtained six N:P ratios of 5:1, 10:1, 20:1, 30:1, 60:1 and 120:1 and tested on the algae species in triplicate. Growth rate was similar in both algal species across all N:P ratios, and the carbon content in T. lutea was higher than in N. oculata. However, the carbon contents were high in the N:P ratios of 5:1 and 120:1 and low from 10:1 to 60:1 N:P ratios for both T. lutea and N. oculata. There were no significant differences in cellular N and P, but the protein contents depended on algae species and were significantly affected by N:P ratios. The N:P ratio of 20:1 favoured algal growth and protein content, while the N:P ratio of 120:1 reduced algal growth and protein synthesis but increased lipid in both algae. The 20:1 N:P ratio favoured eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA) production in N. oculata and the 30:1 N:P ratio favours docosahexaenoic acid (DHA) production in T. lutea. This study indicates that N:P ratio manipulation is an effective strategy to change biochemical composition in algae and N or P limitation tends to lower polyunsaturated fatty acids (PUFA) contents in algae.
    Journal of Applied Phycology 12/2014; DOI:10.1007/s10811-014-0495-z · 2.56 Impact Factor
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    • "Significant progress in strain development and sustainable cultivation technologies are required to reduce the currently high production costs for algal biomass that is produced phototrophically. To date, a few green microalgae species such as Chlamydomonas, Dunaliella or Chlorella, and heterokont microalgae such as Phaeodactylum or Nannochloropsis have been successfully transformed [23]. Beyond mere transformation, adequate tools for the actual expression of unselected transgenes are required: they have been efficiently demonstrated so far in only a few algal species. "
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    ABSTRACT: Microalgae are considered a promising source for various high value products, such as carotenoids, ω-3 and ω-6 polyunsaturated fatty acids (PUFA). The unicellular green alga Lobosphaera (Parietochloris) incisa is an outstanding candidate for the efficient phototrophic production of arachidonic acid (AA), an essential ω-6 PUFA for infant brain development and a widely used ingredient in the baby formula industry. Although phototrophic production of such algal products has not yet been established, estimated costs are considered to be 2-5 times higher than competing heterotrophic production costs. This alga accumulates unprecedented amounts of AA within triacylglycerols and the molecular pathway of AA biosynthesis in L. incisa has been previously elucidated. Thus, progress in transformation and metabolic engineering of this high value alga could be exploited for increasing the efficient production of AA at competitive prices. We describe here the first successful transformation of L. incisa using the ble gene as a selection marker, under the control of the endogenous RBCS promoter. Furthermore, we have succeeded in the functional complementation of the L. incisa mutant strain P127, containing a mutated, inactive version of the delta-5 (Δ5) fatty acid desaturase gene. A copy of the functional Δ5 desaturase gene, linked to the ble selection marker, was transformed into the P127 mutant. The resulting transformants selected for zeocine resistant, had AA biosynthesis partially restored, indicating the functional complementation of the mutant strain with the wild-type gene. The results of this study present a platform for the successful genetic engineering of L. incisa and its long-chain PUFA metabolism.
    PLoS ONE 08/2014; 9(8):e105223. DOI:10.1371/journal.pone.0105223 · 3.23 Impact Factor
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