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Isolation and molecular characterisation of Dunaliella tertiolecta with truncated light-harvesting antenna for enhanced photosynthetic efficiency

Isolation and molecular characterisation of Dunaliella tertiolecta with truncated light-harvesting antenna for enhanced photosynthetic efficiency
Isolation and molecular characterisation of Dunaliella tertiolecta with truncated light-harvesting antenna for enhanced photosynthetic efficiency
Here we report the development of a high-throughput selection protocol using random mutagenesis and live single-cell sorting to isolate cell lines from the algae Dunaliella tertiolecta with reduced chlorophyll content, with the aim to optimise the antenna size for increased photosynthetic efficiency. Two promising cell lines (lca1 and lca2) have been isolated that display a truncated light-harvesting antenna, and hence improved photosynthetic energy conversion efficiency by increasing the light intensity at which photosynthesis becomes saturated (Is). lca1 and lca2 differ significantly: the lca2 phenotype retains an ability to alter its antenna size in response to varying light intensity, whereas lca1 appears to have lost this ability and is ‘locked’ to a truncated antenna and high-light phenotype. Despite these clear differences, transcriptomic analysis shows that the expression profiles for differentially expressed nuclear-encoded photosynthetic genes is similar in both lca1 and lca2, possibly suggesting underlying mutations in the regulation of photosynthesis are causing the observed changes in phenotype rather than mutations impacting specific components of the photosynthetic apparatus. The combination of approaches presented here offer the capacity to substantially improve photosynthetic efficiency from any microalgal species irrespective of the extent to which it has been characterised genetically or the availability of molecular tools for rational engineering. It thus offers the potential to begin to exploit the huge natural diversity of microalgae for enhanced biomass production.
Chlorophyll, Fluorescence-activated cell sorting (FACS), Light harvesting, Microalgae, Photosynthesis, Transcriptomics
2211-9264
Johansson, S. A.
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Stephenson, P. G.
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Edwards, R. J.
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Yoshida, K.
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Moore, C. M.
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Terauchi, R.
934926b5-7016-4152-aded-1a002da1f66b
Zubkov, M. V.
b1dfb3a0-bcff-430c-9031-358a22b50743
Terry, M. J.
a8c2cd6b-8d35-4053-8d77-3841c2427c3b
Bibby, T. S.
e04ea079-dd90-4ead-9840-00882de27ebd
Johansson, S. A.
1f6a5f61-24d1-4007-81c6-8596aaaa7241
Stephenson, P. G.
fdd2c167-f589-4045-98b0-184a4713f076
Edwards, R. J.
9d25e74f-dc0d-455a-832c-5f363d864c43
Yoshida, K.
e8be34c0-2740-4be7-a519-c220752cef20
Moore, C. M.
7ec80b7b-bedc-4dd5-8924-0f5d01927b12
Terauchi, R.
934926b5-7016-4152-aded-1a002da1f66b
Zubkov, M. V.
b1dfb3a0-bcff-430c-9031-358a22b50743
Terry, M. J.
a8c2cd6b-8d35-4053-8d77-3841c2427c3b
Bibby, T. S.
e04ea079-dd90-4ead-9840-00882de27ebd

Johansson, S. A., Stephenson, P. G., Edwards, R. J., Yoshida, K., Moore, C. M., Terauchi, R., Zubkov, M. V., Terry, M. J. and Bibby, T. S. (2020) Isolation and molecular characterisation of Dunaliella tertiolecta with truncated light-harvesting antenna for enhanced photosynthetic efficiency. Algal Research, 48, [101917]. (doi:10.1016/j.algal.2020.101917).

Record type: Article

Abstract

Here we report the development of a high-throughput selection protocol using random mutagenesis and live single-cell sorting to isolate cell lines from the algae Dunaliella tertiolecta with reduced chlorophyll content, with the aim to optimise the antenna size for increased photosynthetic efficiency. Two promising cell lines (lca1 and lca2) have been isolated that display a truncated light-harvesting antenna, and hence improved photosynthetic energy conversion efficiency by increasing the light intensity at which photosynthesis becomes saturated (Is). lca1 and lca2 differ significantly: the lca2 phenotype retains an ability to alter its antenna size in response to varying light intensity, whereas lca1 appears to have lost this ability and is ‘locked’ to a truncated antenna and high-light phenotype. Despite these clear differences, transcriptomic analysis shows that the expression profiles for differentially expressed nuclear-encoded photosynthetic genes is similar in both lca1 and lca2, possibly suggesting underlying mutations in the regulation of photosynthesis are causing the observed changes in phenotype rather than mutations impacting specific components of the photosynthetic apparatus. The combination of approaches presented here offer the capacity to substantially improve photosynthetic efficiency from any microalgal species irrespective of the extent to which it has been characterised genetically or the availability of molecular tools for rational engineering. It thus offers the potential to begin to exploit the huge natural diversity of microalgae for enhanced biomass production.

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Johansson_2020 - Accepted Manuscript
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More information

Accepted/In Press date: 11 April 2020
e-pub ahead of print date: 27 April 2020
Published date: 1 June 2020
Keywords: Chlorophyll, Fluorescence-activated cell sorting (FACS), Light harvesting, Microalgae, Photosynthesis, Transcriptomics

Identifiers

Local EPrints ID: 439807
URI: http://eprints.soton.ac.uk/id/eprint/439807
ISSN: 2211-9264
PURE UUID: 1e69bb95-d890-4bd9-a880-41eea4a0133d
ORCID for M. J. Terry: ORCID iD orcid.org/0000-0001-5002-2708

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Date deposited: 05 May 2020 16:30
Last modified: 07 Oct 2020 01:39

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Contributors

Author: S. A. Johansson
Author: P. G. Stephenson
Author: R. J. Edwards
Author: K. Yoshida
Author: C. M. Moore
Author: R. Terauchi
Author: M. V. Zubkov
Author: M. J. Terry ORCID iD
Author: T. S. Bibby

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