Understanding lipogenesis by dynamically profiling transcriptional activity of lipogenic promoters in Yarrowia lipolytica

Huan Liu, Monireh Marsafari, Li Deng, Peng Xu*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

53 Scopus citations


Lipogenesis is a complicated process involving global transcriptional reprogramming of lipogenic pathways. It is commonly believed that nitrogen starvation triggers a metabolic shift that reroutes carbon flux from Krebs cycles to lipogenesis. In this study, we systematically surveyed and dynamically profiled the transcriptional activity of 22 lipogenic promoters aiming to delineate a picture how nitrogen starvation regulates lipogenesis in Y. lipolytica. These lipogenic promoters drive the expression of critical pathways that are responsible for the generation of reducing equivalents (NADPH), carbon backbones (acetyl-CoA, malonyl-CoA, DHAP, etc.), synthesis and degradation of fatty acids. Specifically, our investigated promoters span across an array of metabolic pathways, including glycolysis, Krebs cycle, pentose phosphate pathway, mannitol cycle, glutamine–GABA cycle, fatty acid and lipid synthesis, glyoxylate, β-oxidation, and POM (pyruvate–oxaloacetate–malate) cycle. Our work provides evidences that mannitol cycle, glutamine–GABA cycle and amino acid degradation, pyruvate oxidation, and acetate assimilation pathways are lipogenesis-related steps involved in generating cytosolic NADPH and acetyl-CoA precursors. This systematic investigation and dynamic profiling of lipogenic promoters may help us better understand lipogenesis, facilitate the formulation of structure-based kinetic models, as well as develop efficient cell factories for fuels and chemical production in oleaginous species.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)3167-3179
Number of pages13
JournalApplied Microbiology and Biotechnology
Issue number7
StatePublished - 1 Apr 2019
Externally publishedYes


  • Carbon backbones
  • Lipogenesis
  • Nitrogen starvations
  • Oleaginous yeast
  • Reducing equivalents


Dive into the research topics of 'Understanding lipogenesis by dynamically profiling transcriptional activity of lipogenic promoters in Yarrowia lipolytica'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this