Feb. 29, 2020

Researchers at the International Centre for Genetic Engineering and Biotechnology (ICGEB) are developing a method to improve the growth rate and sugar content of a marine microorganism called Synechococcus sp. PCC 7002.

Synechococcus sp. PCC 7002:

  • Background: Biofuel production is dependent on the availability of low-cost and sustainable supply of sugars and a nitrogen source.

  • Cyanobacteria: Some bacteria, such as the cyanobacteria (also known as blue-green algae), too can perform photosynthesis and produce sugar by fixing the carbon dioxide in the atmosphere. Cyanobacteria are found in both fresh and marine waters.

  • Benefits: The yield of sugars from cyanobacteria could potentially be much higher than that of land-based crops. Further, unlike plant-based sugars, cyanobacterial biomass provides a nitrogen source in the form of proteins. This could give a boost to the biofuel sector.

  • Synechococcus sp. PCC 7002: A team from International Centre for Genetic Engineering and Biotechnology have successfully engineered a marine cyanobacterium called Synechococcus sp. PCC 7002 which showed a higher growth rate and sugar (glycogen) content. 

Source : The Hindu