20 September 2018

Congratulations Tanja!

MSc grade

DynaMo master student Tanja Domeyer successfully defended her MSc thesis in Biology-Biotechnology in front of a full auditorium.

On Friday 21 September, DynaMo master student Tanja Domeyer obtained the MSc degree in Biology-Biotechnology by defending her MSc thesis entitled 'Towards sugar-based growth of Chlamydomonas reinhardtii'.

Unicellular microalgae like Chlamydomonas reinhardtii have great potential as novel heterologous expression hosts for the production of monoclonal antibodies, oral vaccines and other valuable complex proteins and metabolites. However, difficulties in achieving high cell densities in production systems hampers commercial utilization.

Most microalgae including C. reinhardtii can grow phototrophically using light as energy source and carbon dioxide as carbon source. However, phototrophic growth is limited by mutual shading of the cells even at moderate densities, which is problematic for scaling up production in photobioreactors.

In Tanjas MSc project she exploited the possibility of enhancing the achievable cell densities by enabling heterotrophic growth on glucose as carbon source. Since C. reinhardtii does not grow on glucose as it is not able to take it up from the media, and because it harbors a highly compartmentalized glycolytic pathway, whose first stage is located almost completely in the chloroplast, she used a transport engineering approach to achieve glucose uptake and utilization by attempting to express a number of heterologous transport proteins in the plasma and chloroplast membranes and observing the effect on C. reinhardtii’s glucose uptake abilities and growth.

Tanjas MSc project was financially supported by a Novo Scholarship given to outstanding and talented master students within subjects related to Novozymes' or Novo Nordisk’s research areas.

Tanja completed her MSc degree with an excellent and convincing oral presentaion of her MSc project in front of family, friends and colleagues.

Congratulations Tanja!