Microbial production of omega-3 fatty acids – a model based approach.

Project overview

Project lead: Per Bruheim
Institution: NTNU
Partners: SINTEF
Duration: Start-up 2017


Absolute Quantification of the Central Carbon Metabolome in Eight Commonly Applied Prokaryotic and Eukaryotic Model Systems (2020)
Lisa Marie Røst, Lilja Brekke Thorfinnsdottir, Kanhaiya Kumar, Katsuya Fuchino, Ida Eide Langørgen, Zdenka Bartosova, Kåre Andre Kristiansen, Per Bruheim

Zwitterionic HILIC tandem mass spectrometry with isotope dilution for rapid, sensitive and robust quantification of pyridine nucleotides in biological extracts (2020)
Lisa Marie Røst, Armaghan Shafaei, Katsuya Fuchino, Per Bruheim

Lipid and DHA-production in Aurantiochytrium sp. – Responses to nitrogen starvation and oxygen limitation revealed by analyses of production kinetics and global transcriptomes (2019)
Tonje Marita Bjerkan Heggeset, Helga Ertesvåg, Bin Liu, Trond Erling Ellingsen, Olav Vadstein, Inga Marie Aasen

High-throughput method for lipidomic analysis and semi-quantification of lipid classes (2019)
Zdenka Bartosova, Susana Villa Gonzalez, Per Bruheim

Supercritical fluid chromatography with mass spectrometry: A versatile tool for lipid profiling and lipid class quantitation (2019)
Zdenka Bartosova, Marit Hallvardsdotter Stafsnes, Andre Voigt, Per Bruheim

Metabolomics and fluxomics - essential approaches in optimization of bioprocesses (2019)
Marit Hallvardsdotter Stafsnes, Zdenka Bartosova, Per Bruheim

Production of omega3 fatty acids for salmon feed by heterotrophic microorganisms. (2019)
Inga Marie Aasen

Fatty acid synthesis in Aurantiochytrium sp, revealed by analyses of growth and production kinetics and global proteomes. (2019)
Inga Marie Aasen, Hanne Haslene-Hox, Helga Ertesvåg, Tonje Marita Bjerkan Heggeset, Per Bruheim

Lipid accumulation and DHA synthesis in Aurantiochytrium sp, elucidated by transcriptome, proteome and metabolome analyses. (2019)
Inga Marie Aasen, Hanne Haslene-Hox, Marit Hallvardsdotter Stafsnes, Tonje Marita Bjerkan Heggeset, Per Bruheim

Industrial microbiology – 'omics methods and modelling as tools for process optimization (2019)
Helga Ertesvåg, Hanne Haslene-Hox, Inga Marie Aasen, Eivind Almaas, Zdenka Bartosova, Tonje Marita Bjerkan Heggeset, Simone Balzer Le, E-Ming Rau, Marit Hallvardsdotter Stafsnes, Andre Voigt, Per Bruheim

All results in the CRIStin-database

Research group

The long-chain omega-3 fatty acids EPA and DHA are essential for humans, as well as for marine fish species. The current source is fish oil. As wild fish catches cannot be further increased, continued growth of marine aquaculture, in Norway and globally, is now seriously constrained by the availability of fish oil. New, sustainable sources of the EPA and DHA are needed. Thraustochytrids are unicellular eukaryotic microorganisms able to accumulate high levels of lipids. They can be cultivated at high cell concentration and are extremely promising organisms for development of economic competitive omega-3 fatty acid bioprocesses.

Despite many years of research, there is still a lack of basic understanding of fatty acid synthesis in thraustochytrids, where DHA and saturated fatty acids are produced by two competing pathways. AUROMEGA partners NTNU and SINTEF have over the last decade isolated a high number of thraustochytrid strains and characterized their lipid-producing potential.The systems biology approach in AUROMEGA will provide an enhanced understanding of what limits the DHA synthesis in thraustochytrids and how it can be improved. An iterative approach applying high integration of experimental disciplines, with extensive omics analyses, and mathematical modelling will be used. The mathematical and computational analysis will be based on genome-scale metabolic reconstruction and simulations to predict metabolic performance profiles, and complex network analysis to identify key regulatory features of DHA-synthesis, with particular focus of increasing the rate of DHA-synthesis and introduction in the triacylglycerol storage lipids. The acquired new knowledge will be translated into enhanced DHA production capabilities of selected thraustochytrid strains and laying the foundation for a sustainable and economically feasible industrial omega-3 fatty acid production process, thereby enabling further growth of one of the most important industries in Norway.