Archives of Microbiology

, Volume 141, Issue 2, pp 138–142 | Cite as

Unsaturated fatty acid composition and biosynthesis in Oscillatoria limnetica and other cyanobacteria

  • Aharon Oren
  • Ali Fattom
  • Etana Padan
  • Alisa Tietz
Original Papers


A number of cyanobacteria showing a high degree of adaptation to life under reduced oxygen tensions as witnessed by their potency of facultative anoxygenic CO2 photoassimilation with sulfide as electron donor were found to lack polyunsaturated fatty acids in their lipids. Lack of polyunsaturated fatty acids was found in representatives of different taxonomic groups. One of the strains lacking polyenoic acids was Oscillatoria limnetica, which can alternatively grow acrobically or anaerobically with sulfide as electron donor. This organism was found to synthesize monounsaturated fatty acids by desaturation of their saturated counterparts, in the presence as well as in the absence of molecular oxygen.

Key words

Cyanobacteria Oscillatoria limnetica Polyunsaturated fatty acids Anoxygenic photosynthesis Anaerobic growth Hydrophobicity 



Acyl carrier protein




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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 1985

Authors and Affiliations

  • Aharon Oren
    • 1
  • Ali Fattom
    • 1
  • Etana Padan
    • 1
  • Alisa Tietz
    • 2
  1. 1.Division of Microbial and Molecular Ecology, The Institute of Life SciencesThe Hebrew University of JerusalemJerusalemIsrael
  2. 2.Department of BiochemistryTet-Aviv UniversityTel-AvivIsrael

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