Volume 19, Number 1, Janvier-Février 2012
|22 - 28
|Dossier : Lipochimie
|15 January 2012
Yeast: A new oil producer?
Laboratoire de microbiologie et génétique moléculaire, INRA, UMR1319, Micalis, Domaine de Vilvert, F-78352 78352 Jouy-en-Josas, France
The increasing demand of plant oils or animal fat for biodiesel and specific lipid derivatives for the oleochemical field (such as lubricants, adhesives or plastics) have created price imbalance in both the alimentary and energy field. Moreover, the lack of non-edible oil feedstock has given rise to concerns on land-use practices and on oil production strategies. Recently, much attention has been paid to the exploitation of microbial oils. Most of them present lipid profiles similar in type and composition to plants and could therefore have many advantages as are no competitive with food, have short process cycles and their cultivation is independent of climate factors. Among microorganisms, yeasts seem to be very promising as they can be easily genetically enhanced, are suitable for large-scale fermentation and are devoid of endotoxins. This review will focus on the recent understanding of yeasts lipid metabolism, the succeeding genetic engineering of the lipid pathways and the recent developments on fermentation techniques that pointed out yeasts as promising alternative producers for oil or plastic.
Key words: yeast / oleochemistery / microbial oils / lipids / fermentation / Y. lipolytica / microorganisms
© John Libbey Eurotext 2012
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