CHASSY (Model Based Construction and Optimisation of Versatile Chassis Yeast Strains for Production of Valuable Lipid and Aromatic Compounds)

CHASSY (Model Based Construction and Optimisation of Versatile Chassis Yeast Strains for Production of Valuable Lipid and Aromatic Compounds)

Researcher Name: Dr John Morrissey (PI)


Telephone number: 353 21 490 2396

Funding Body: EU – Horizon2020 Biotec3

Project type: Research and Innovation action coordinated by UCC but involving a consortium of 10 partners

Period: Dec 2016 – Nov 2020


Project description:

CHASSY is working to redesign three species of yeast into sustainable production factories for valuable oils, fats and aromas. These ingredients will be useful for replacing petrochemicals and palm oil-derived substances in cosmetics, nutraceuticals, pharmaceuticals and industrial biotechnology. While proof-of-principle research has been done before, CHASSY will address some of the existing challenges associated with cell factory production of these compounds and test results in an industrial setting.

CHASSY will use systems and synthetic biology tools and will work in a truly interdisciplinary and collaborative way to ensure the best outcomes from the project. These outcomes will be:

(1) a new set of chassis yeast strains that are widely applicable for development of industrial cell factories;

(2) the knowledge and technology to readily build and evaluate new chassis tailored to specific applications;

(3) prototype cell factory strains producing three high value metabolites for commercial exploitation;

(4) a dissemination and exploitation strategy to ensure that European SMEs benefit from the knowledge base, platform chassis and resources generated in CHASSY.


Varela et al. Expansion and Diversification of MFS Transporters in Kluyveromyces marxianus. Frontiers in Microbiology 9 (2019), article 3330.

Larroudé et al. Synthetic biology tools for engineering Yarrowia lypolitica. Biotechnology Advances 36:8 (2018); pp 2150-2164.

Yu et al. Metabolic engineering of Saccharomyces cervisiae for production of very long chain fatty acid-derived chemicals. Nature Communications 8 (2018), article 155587.

Baumann et al. A Yeast-Based Biosensor for Screening of Short- and Medium-Chain Fatty Acid Production. ACS Synthetic Biology 7:11 (2018), pp. 2640-2646.

Yongjin et al.. Barriers and opportunities in bio-based production of hydrocarbons. Nature Energy 3 (2018), 925-935.

Hu et al. Heterologous transporter expression for improved fatty alcohol secretion in yeast. Metabolic Engineering 45 (2018). pp 51-58.

Juergens et al. Genome editing in Kluyveromyces marxianus and Ogatea yeasts using a broad-host-range Cas9gRNA co-expression plasmid. FEMS Yeast Research 18:3 (2018) foy12.

Mans et al. Under pressure: evolutionary engineering of yeast strains for improved performance in fuels and chemicals production. Current Opinion in Biotechnology 50 (2018). pp 47-56.

Swiat et al. FnCpf1: a novel and efficient genome editing tool for Saccharomyces cerevisiae. Nucleic Acids Research 45: 21 (2017). pp 12585-12598.

Sanchez et al. Improving the phenotype predictions of a yeast genome scale metabolic model by incorporating enzymatic constraints. Molecular Systems Biology 13, 935 (2017).

Environmental Research Institute

University College Cork, Lee Road, Cork