Birgitta Bergman and Rehab El-Shehawy (a former member of the department) have in a European consortium sequenced the genome of the cyanobacterium that dominate summer-’blooms’ in the Baltic Sea and in some other brackish water environments in the world: Nodularia spumigena CCY9414. The genome comprised of ~5.5 Mbp is composed of about 5300 genes, of which the expression was also analysed. Besides the ~4% of the genome that is engaged in secondary metabolite production, such as the toxins nodularin, but also spumigin and cyclic nodulapeptin, a large number of genes is involved in the biosynthesis of other secondary metabolites. The genome also holds large sets of genes related to nitrogen fixation and cell differentiation, for the uptake and metabolism of iron and phosphorous rich compounds as well as for gas vesicle production. The sequenced genome represents a rich knowledge base for a better understanding of the biology of Nodularia in a Baltic Sea perspective; as well as for the use of Nodularia in future biotechnological efforts.

Voß B, Bolhuis H, Fewer DP, Kopf M, Möke F, Haas F, El-Shehawy R, Hayes P, Bergman B, Sivonen K, Dittmann E, Scanlan DJ, Hagemann M, Stal LJ, Hess WR (2013).
Insights into the Physiology and Ecology of the Brackish-Water-Adapted Cyanobacterium Nodularia spumigena CCY9414 Based on a Genome-Transcriptome Analysis.

PLoS ONE 8(3): e60224. doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0060224