A sustainable route to high value terpenoid production in cyanobacteria

Lead Research Organisation: University of Nottingham
Department Name: Faculty of Engineering


Cyanobacteria are photosynthetic prokaryotes capable of fixing CO2 as a sole carbon source and utilising light as an energy source. They have attracted significant interest as biofuel and high-value pharmaceutical/nutraceutical producing organisms, with several laboratories seeking to re-engineer cyanobacteria as cell factory platforms. Terpenoids are extremely diverse natural products with more than 55,000 identified. Terpenoids are primarily produced by plants and play important roles in both primary and secondary metabolism, they also have a variety of commercial applications. Therefore the sustainable production of terpenoids in cyanobacteria utilising sunlight and CO2 is a very attractive proposition. Terpene synthases and precursor pathways have already been implemented in cyanobacteria to increase the production of various different terpenes, however to be commercially viable productivity needs to be significantly increased. This project aims to engineer a cyanobacterial strain with improved flux down the MEP pathway, utilising a combination of dynamic regulation, metabolomic flux analysis and fermentation. Thus directing more photosynthetic carbon towards terpenoid production.


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Studentship Projects

Project Reference Relationship Related To Start End Student Name
BB/M008770/1 30/09/2015 31/10/2024
2106308 Studentship BB/M008770/1 30/09/2018 30/03/2023 Philip Ssentongo