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HILIC- and SCX-Based Quantitative Proteomics of Chlamydomonas reinhardtii during Nitrogen Starvation Induced Lipid and Carbohydrate Accumulation

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posted on 07.12.2012, 00:00 by Joseph Longworth, Josselin Noirel, Jagroop Pandhal, Phillip C. Wright, Seetharaman Vaidyanathan
Nitrogen starvation induced changes in carbohydrate and lipid content is described in several algal species. Although these phenotypic changes are desirable, such manipulations also significantly deteriorate culture health, ultimately halting growth. To optimize biofuel production from algae, it is desirable to induce lipid accumulation without compromising cell growth and survival. In this study, we utilized an 8-plex iTRAQ-based proteomic approach to assess the model alga Chlamydomonas reinhardtii CCAP 11/32CW15+ under nitrogen starvation. First-dimension fractionation was conducted using HILIC and SCX. A total of 587 proteins were identified (≥3 peptides) of which 71 and 311 were differentially expressed at significant levels (p < 0.05), during nitrogen stress induced carbohydrate and lipid production, respectively. Forty-seven percent more changes with significance were observed with HILIC compared to SCX. Several trends were observed including increase in energy metabolism, decrease in translation machinery, increase in cell wall production and a change of balance between photosystems I and II. These findings point to a severely compromised system where lipid is accumulated at the expense of normal functioning of the organism, suggesting that a more informed and controlled method of lipid induction than gross nutrient manipulation would be needed for development of sustainable processes.

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