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PubMed | Hiroshima University, Suntory World Research Center and Osaka University
Type: | Journal: Scientific reports | Year: 2015

Ceramide is one of the most important intercellular components responsible for the barrier and moisture retention functions of the skin. Because of the risks involved with using products of animal origin and the low productivity of plants, the availability of ceramides is currently limited. In this study, we successfully developed a system that produces sphingosine-containing human ceramide-NS in the yeast Saccharomyces cerevisiae by eliminating the genes for yeast sphingolipid hydroxylases (encoded by SUR2 and SCS7) and introducing the gene for a human sphingolipid desaturase (encoded by DES1). The inactivation of the ceramidase gene YDC1, overexpression of the inositol phosphosphingolipid phospholipase C gene ISC1, and endoplasmic reticulum localization of the DES1 gene product resulted in enhanced production of ceramide-NS. The engineered yeast strains can serve as hosts not only for providing a sustainable source of ceramide-NS but also for developing further systems to produce sphingosine-containing sphingolipids.

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