Kinetic and Stoichiometric Modeling-Based Analysis of Docosahexaenoic Acid (DHA) Production Potential by Crypthecodinium cohnii from Glycerol, Glucose and Ethanol

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  • Kristaps Berzins
  • Reinis Muiznieks
  • Matiss R. Baumanis
  • Inese Strazdina
  • Karlis Shvirksts
  • Santa Prikule
  • Vytautas Galvanauskas
  • Daniel Pleissner
  • Agris Pentjuss
  • Mara Grube
  • Uldis Kalnenieks
  • Egils Stalidzans

Docosahexaenoic acid (DHA) is one of the most important long-chain polyunsaturated fatty acids (LC-PUFAs), with numerous health benefits. Crypthecodinium cohnii, a marine hetero-trophic dinoflagellate, is successfully used for the industrial production of DHA because it can ac-cumulate DHA at high concentrations within the cells. Glycerol is an interesting renewable substrate for DHA production since it is a by-product of biodiesel production and other industries, and is globally generated in large quantities. The DHA production potential from glycerol, ethanol and glucose is compared by combining fermentation experiments with the pathway-scale kinetic modeling and constraint-based stoichiometric modeling of C. cohnii metabolism. Glycerol has the slow-est biomass growth rate among the tested substrates. This is partially compensated by the highest PUFAs fraction, where DHA is dominant. Mathematical modeling reveals that glycerol has the best experimentally observed carbon transformation rate into biomass, reaching the closest values to the theoretical upper limit. In addition to our observations, the published experimental evidence indi-cates that crude glycerol is readily consumed by C. cohnii, making glycerol an attractive substrate for DHA production.

Original languageEnglish
Article number115
JournalMarine Drugs
Issue number2
Number of pages18
Publication statusPublished - 01.02.2022

Bibliographical note

This work was funded by the Latvian ERDF project R.M., M.R.B. and A.P. were supported by University of Latvia under project “Climate change and its impacts on sustainability of natural resources” (Nr. Y5-AZ20-ZF-N-270).

    Research areas

  • Central metabolism, Constraint-based model, FTIR spectroscopy, Kinetic model, Krebs cycle
  • Biology