Gene silencing of stearoyl-ACP desaturase enhances the stearic acid content in Chlamydomonas reinhardtii

L. de Jaeger, J. Springer, E.J.H. Wolbert, D.E. Martens, G. Eggink, R.H. Wijffels*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

6 Citations (Scopus)


In this study, stearoyl-ACP desaturase (SAD), the enzyme that converts stearic acid into oleic acid, is silenced by artificial microRNA in the green microalga Chlamydomonas reinhardtii. Two different constructs, which target different positions on the mRNA of stearoyl-ACP desaturase, were tested. The mRNA levels for SAD were reduced after the silencing construct was induced. In one of the strains, the reduction in SAD mRNA resulted in a doubling of the stearic acid content in triacylglycerol molecules, which shows that stearic acid production in microalgae is possible.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1616-1626
JournalBioresource Technology
Issue numberB
Early online date2017
Publication statusPublished - Dec 2017



  • Chlamydomonas reinhardtii
  • Enhanced stearic acid
  • RNA silencing

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