The demand for n-3 long-chain polyunsaturated fatty acids (n-3LC-PUFAs), such as docosahexaenoic acid (DHA) and eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA), will exceed their supply in the near future, and a sustainable source of n-3LC-PUFAs is needed. Thraustochytrids are marine protists characterized by anaerobic biosynthesis of DHA via polyunsaturated fatty acid synthase (PUFA-S). Analysis of a homemade draft genome database suggested that Parietichytrium sp. lacks PUFA-S but possesses all fatty acid elongase (ELO) and desaturase (DES) genes required for DHA synthesis. The reverse genetic approach and a tracing experiment using stable isotope-labeled fatty acids revealed that the ELO/DES pathway is the only DHA synthesis pathway in Parietichytrium sp. Disruption of the C20 fatty acid ELO (C20ELO) and ∆4 fatty acid DES (∆4DES) genes with expression of ω3 fatty acid DES in this thraustochytrid allowed the production of EPA and n-3docosapentaenoic acid (n-3DPA), respectively, at the highest level among known microbial sources using fed-batch culture.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Medicine (miscellaneous)
- Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology(all)
- Agricultural and Biological Sciences(all)