New GeneArt Algae Protein Expression Kits from Life Technologies

By Life Technologies Corp. | December 16, 2013

Life Technologies Corp. announced that the company has expanded its GeneArt Algae Engineering  portfolio. The new kits contain features requested by algae biologists and are designed to make work with algae simpler and faster. The GeneArt kits represent the first commercially available genetic modification and expression systems for photosynthetic microalgae Chlamydomonas reinhardtii  and Synechococcus elongatus.

The GeneArt Chlamydomonas Protein Expression Kits and GeneArt Synechoccus  Protein Expression Kits contain high-expression vectors capable of driving production of genes of interest to as much as 10 percent of total cellular protein. The kits also contain new proprietary transformation reagents that can boost introduction of DNA into cells by as much as a thousand-fold over what is typically achieved with current techniques.

“By combining high levels of both DNA transformation and protein expression, the new GeneArt kits allow investigators to move beyond basic research into more of a production mode and applied science,” said Nathan Wood, general manager and vice president of synthetic biology for Life Technologies. “These were features specifically requested by users of our first-generation kits, and we believe these capabilities will help algae biologists advance their field to level of ease that typifies work with yeast and E. coli.”

The new GeneArt kits also contain reagents and a protocol enabling researchers to freeze and store Chlamydomonas strains at minus 80 degrees Celsius. Algal researchers have traditionally relied on passaging strains indefinitely, which makes the cultures subject to genetic drift, and shipping live cultures on agar slants, which frequently become contaminated.

“A protocol for freezing their own clones is one of the most frequent requests we receive from customers,” said Wood. “It will facilitate standardization of these important model organisms and allow rapid exchange among investigators that will facilitate progress in the field.”

Algae serve as model organisms for the study of photosynthesis, circadian rhythms and nutrient-regulated gene activity, and are being investigated for production of biofuels, nutraceuticals and specialty chemicals.

*For research use only. Not for use in diagnostic procedures.



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