Metabolic engineering of Saccharomyces cerevisiae to improve 1-hexadecanol production

Xueyang Feng, Jiazhang Lian, Huimin Zhao

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Fatty alcohols are important components of a vast array of surfactants, lubricants, detergents, pharmaceuticals and cosmetics. We have engineered Saccharomyces cerevisiae to produce 1-hexadecanol by expressing a fatty acyl-CoA reductase (FAR) from barn owl (Tyto alba). In order to improve fatty alcohol production, we have manipulated both the structural genes and the regulatory genes in yeast lipid metabolism. The acetyl-CoA carboxylase gene (ACC1) was over-expressed, which improved 1-hexadecanol production by 56% (from 45. mg/L to 71. mg/L). Knocking out the negative regulator of the INO1 gene in phospholipid metabolism, RPD3, further enhanced 1-hexadecanol production by 98% (from 71. mg/L to 140. mg/L). The cytosolic acetyl-CoA supply was next engineered by expressing a heterologous ATP-dependent citrate lyase, which increased the production of 1-hexadecanol by an additional 136% (from 140. mg/L to 330. mg/L). Through fed-batch fermentation using resting cells, over 1.1. g/L 1-hexadecanol can be produced in glucose minimal medium, which represents the highest titer reported in yeast to date.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)10-19
Number of pages10
JournalMetabolic Engineering
StatePublished - Jan 1 2015


  • Acetyl-CoA
  • Fatty alcohol
  • Metabolic engineering
  • Phospholipid
  • Regulator
  • Yeast

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Bioengineering
  • Biotechnology
  • Applied Microbiology and Biotechnology


Dive into the research topics of 'Metabolic engineering of Saccharomyces cerevisiae to improve 1-hexadecanol production'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this