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Loira, N., Mendoza, S., Cortes, M. P., Rojas, N., Travisany, D., Di Genova, A., et al. (2017). Reconstruction of the microalga Nannochloropsis salina genome-scale metabolic model with applications to lipid production. BMC Syst. Biol., 11, 17 pp.
Abstract: Background: Nannochloropsis salina (= Eustigmatophyceae) is a marine microalga which has become a biotechnological target because of its high capacity to produce polyunsaturated fatty acids and triacylglycerols. It has been used as a source of biofuel, pigments and food supplements, like Omega 3. Only some Nannochloropsis species have been sequenced, but none of them benefit from a genome-scale metabolic model (GSMM), able to predict its metabolic capabilities. Results: We present iNS934, the first GSMM for N. salina, including 2345 reactions, 934 genes and an exhaustive description of lipid and nitrogen metabolism. iNS934 has a 90% of accuracy when making simple growth/no-growth predictions and has a 15% error rate in predicting growth rates in different experimental conditions. Moreover, iNS934 allowed us to propose 82 different knockout strategies for strain optimization of triacylglycerols. Conclusions: iNS934 provides a powerful tool for metabolic improvement, allowing predictions and simulations of N. salina metabolism under different media and genetic conditions. It also provides a systemic view of N. salina metabolism, potentially guiding research and providing context to -omics data.