Current Microbiology

, 55:128 | Cite as

Disruption of the Fatty Acid Δ6-Desaturase Gene in the Oil-Producing Fungus Mortierella isabellina by Homologous Recombination

  • Xuewei Zhang
  • Mingchun Li
  • Dongsheng Wei
  • Xiaomei Wang
  • Xue Chen
  • Laijun Xing


The γ-linolenic acid-producing fungus Mortierella isabellina 6-22 is an important industrial strain. To clarify the biosynthetic pathways for polyunsaturated fatty acids in this strain, a disruption vector pD4MI6, including 5′ and 3′ regions of the fatty acid Δ6-desaturase open reading frame as homologous recombination elements and the Escherichia coli hygromycin B (HmB) phosphotransferase gene (hph) as selectable marker, was successfully constructed. Following transformation of pD4MI6 into the hygromycin B-sensitive recipient strain M. isabellina 6-22-4, a Δ6-desaturase gene-defective mutant strain was selected that was unable to produce γ-linolenic acid as determined by gas chromatography and molecular analysis. The morphology and physiology of the mutant, such as colony shape, color, and growth rate, were changed dramatically compared with that of strain M. isabellina 6-22-4.



We are grateful to Dr. D.A. MacKenzie, Institute of Food Research, Norwich, UK, for supplying the pD4 plasmid and for help in editing the manuscript.

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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2007

Authors and Affiliations

  • Xuewei Zhang
    • 1
    • 2
  • Mingchun Li
    • 1
    • 2
  • Dongsheng Wei
    • 1
    • 2
  • Xiaomei Wang
    • 1
    • 2
  • Xue Chen
    • 1
    • 2
  • Laijun Xing
    • 1
    • 2
  1. 1.College of Life Science, Nankai UniversityTianjinPeople’s Republic of China
  2. 2.Tianjin Key Laboratory of Microbial Functional Genomics, Nankai UniversityTianjinPeople’s Republic of China

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