About this Research Topic
For centuries, people have been using microorganisms for their activities and abilities to produce metabolites of interest. One of these metabolites is polyunsaturated fatty acids (PUFAs) accumulated as intracellular storage oils, which are known for their benefits to human health. The two key families of PUFAs are distinguished by the distance between their last double bond and the methyl end of the acyl chain: ω-3/6 (or alternatively n-3/6) designates a PUFA whose last double bond is located at 3rd or 6th carbon, respectively, from the ω-end of the carbon chain. PUFAs are essential components of higher eukaryotes. These acids confer flexibility, fluidity and selective permeability properties to membranes and consequently are of high physiological and therapeutic significance for human well-being. However, the human body cannot synthesize these fatty acids on its own. Therefore, the PUFAs must be obtained from the diet. The traditional sources of PUFAs are derived from the fish oils or some animal adrenal glands. However, the PUFAs derived from the extraction methods are typically costly and insufficient to meet the demand. Luckily, some microorganisms, including yeasts, fungi, algae and even some bacteria, can accumulate PUFA-rich oil. Therefore, by harnessing the power of microbial oleaginicity, the sources for the PUFAs will be expanded.
This Research Topic will be focused on the state-of-the-art techniques and methods employed in microbial PUFAs production processes. Potential topics include, but are not limited to: 1) Biochemistry of polyunsaturated fatty acids and microbial oils 2) High-throughput methods for enhancing the microbial polyunsaturated fatty acids 3) Metabolic engineering for improving the microbial polyunsaturated fatty acid production 4) Process development for efficient microbial polyunsaturated fatty acid production 5) Efficient downstream technologies for microbial polyunsaturated fatty acid production
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