Innovations in Oils
Transitioning to renewable resources
A novel form of canola has been engineered to produce the long-chain Omega-3 fatty acids DHA and EPA, typically found only in fish and other marine organisms. These fatty acids are essential for human nutrition, but their ongoing supply is in jeopardy as global demand is increasing faster than the oceans’ sustainable production.
Terrestrial plants do not naturally contain these fatty acids, but researchers at CSIRO were able to engineer the biosynthetic pathway into the canola plant. This was done by cloning a set of 5 genes responsible for EPA and DHA synthesis in microalgae and transferring them into canola. The resulting canola seed oil produces similar levels of DHA and EPA as found in fish oil.
CSIRO, GRDC, and Nuseed developed the Omega-3 Canola trait into commercial varieties, licensed exclusively to Nuseed Pty Ltd. Regulatory authorities in several countries have approved Omega-3 canola for cultivation and commercial production has commenced in North America. The first batches of omega-3 oil are supplying the aquaculture feed industry under the brand-name Aquaterra®. The oil is also approved for human consumption and Nuseed will market it to the dietary supplement industry under the Nutriterra® brand.
Get the facts …
Development of a Brassica napus (Canola) crop containing fish oil-like levels of DHA in the seed oil. Frontiers of Plant Science (2020)
Metabolic engineering of Arabidopsis to produce nutritionally important DHA in seed oil. Functional Plant Biology (2005)
Regulatory approvals for cultivation of Nuseed’s DHA canola crop:
Regulatory approvals for food use of Nuseed’s DHA canola oil:
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Crop plants engineered to make large amounts of triglyceride oils in their leaves, stems and roots rather than just in their seeds and fruits.
Canola oil engineered as a sustainable, affordable & safe plant source of ω3 DHA & EPA, essential dietary fatty acids normally obtained from fish.
Super-high oleic (92%) safflower oil has been developed for use in high-stability industrial lubricants and as a feedstock for chemicals and polymers.
Low-linolenic linseed oil developed by induced mutation provides an alternative source of polyunsaturated oil for food and industrial use.
Crambe is being engineered to produce novel waxes that combine fatty acids and alcohols for use as lubricants and renewable industrial feedstocks.
Unique triglycerides with an acetate group replacing one of the fatty acids, have reduced viscosity and can be drop-in replacements for diesel fuels.
HIGH OLEIC SOYBEAN
Soybean producing highly stable oil with up to 82% oleic acid is the first new oil crop to be developed using advanced gene editing technology.