Molecular genetic improvements of cyanobacteria to enhance the industrial potential of the microbe: A Review

Tylor J. Johnson, Jaimie L. Gibbons, Liping Gu, Ruanbao Zhou, William R. Gibbons

The rapid increase in worldwide population coupled with the increasing demand for fossil fuels has led to an increased urgency to develop sustainable sources of energy and chemicals from renewable resources. Using microorganisms to produce high-value chemicals and next-generation biofuels is one sustainable option and is the focus of much current research. Cyanobacteria are ideal platform organisms for chemical and biofuel production because they can be genetically engineered to produce a broad range of products directly from CO2, H2O and sunlight, and require minimal nutrient inputs. The purpose of this review is to provide an overview on advances that have been or could be made to improve strains of cyanobacteria for industrial purposes. First, the benefits of using cyanobacteria as a platform for chemical and biofuel production are discussed. Next, an overview of cyanobacterial strain improvements by genetic engineering is provided. Finally, mutagenesis techniques to improve the industrial potential of cyanobacteria are described. Along with providing an overview on various areas of research that are currently being investigated to improve the industrial potential of cyanobacteria, this review aims to elucidate potential targets for future research involving cyanobacteria as an industrial microorganism. This article is protected by copyright. All rights reserved.

Read the full article in Biotechnology Progress

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