Solazyme obtains US patent on recombinant algae
Disclosed herein are obligate heterotrophic microalgae cells containing an exogenous gene. In some embodiments the gene is a sucrose utilization gene, and further disclosed are methods of manufacturing triglyceride oils using sugar cane or sugar beets as a feedstock in a heterotrophic fermentation. In other embodiments the feedstock is depolymerized cellulosic material. Also disclosed are cells that produce medium chain fatty acids at levels not produced in non-recombinant cells of the same species and genus.
The first claim is limited to Prototheca:
A method for preparing recombinant microalgal cells of the genus Prototheca, the method comprising: heterotrophically cultivating recombinant microalgal cells of the genus Prototheca in a fermentation broth, the cells comprising a chromosomal knockout of a stearoyl ACP (acyl carrier protein) desaturase allele so that the cells produce an oil having an altered fatty acid profile comprising a reduction in unsaturated fatty acids; and isolating the cells from the broth.