Off-campus South Dakota State University users: To download campus access theses, please use the following link to log into our proxy server with your South Dakota State University ID and password.
Non-South Dakota State University users: Please talk to your librarian about requesting this thesis through interlibrary loan.
Thesis - University Access Only
Master of Science (MS)
Biology and Microbiology
In the last few decades, concerns over global climate change, energy security, and environmental pollution have been rising. To overcome these challenges, biofuel production from starch and cellulosic crops have given hope in mitigating the human carbon footprint, while decreasing our consumption of fossil fuels. Photosynthetic organisms including plants, algae, and cyanobacteria utilize light energy to convert CO2 into fixed carbon, which is stored as chemical energy in their biomass. To unlock the energy from plant biomass requires long growing seasons, harvesting, industrial processing, and competition with food crops for land use. Photosynthetic microorganisms hold a distinct advantage in biofuel production over plants, given their faster growth rates, higher photosynthetic efficiencies, and simpler nutrient requirements. Engineered cyanobacteria with re-wired metabolic pathways have recently been designed through genetic engineering, and they possess the unique ability to synthesize new chemicals and biofuels, which are secreted from their cells. Systems that utilize photosynthetic microbes for biofuel production are still in their infancy, and further studies into the metabolic profiling and engineering of cyanobacteria need to be conducted to optimize energy efficiency for economic production and commercial deployment. Here, we review current alternative energy strategies, including cyanobacterial-based biofuels, and introduce research regarding the engineering of cyanobacteria to produce cyclic, long-chained hydrocarbons.
Library of Congress Subject Headings
Carbon cycle (Biogeochemistry)
Includes bibliographical references (pages 68-76)
Number of Pages
South Dakota State University
In Copyright - Non-Commercial Use Permitted
Halfmann, Charles, "Metabolic Engineering of a Cyanobacterium to Convert CO2, Water, and Light into a Cyclic Hydrocarbon" (2014). Electronic Theses and Dissertations. 1544.