IUBMB Enzyme Nomenclature


Accepted name: fatty acid photodecarboxylase

Reaction: a long-chain fatty acid + = a long-chain alkane + CO2

Other name(s): FAP (gene name)

Systematic name: fatty acid carboxy-lyase (light-dependent, alkane-forming)

Comments: This algal enzyme, characterized from the green algae Chlorella variabilis and Chlamydomonas reinhardtii, is dependent on blue light, which photooxidizes its FAD cofactor. The enzyme acts on fatty acids in the range of C12 to C22, with a higher efficiency for C16 to C17 chains, and forms an alkane product that is one carbon shorter than the substrate. The enzyme can also act on unsaturated fatty acids, forming the respective alkenes, but does not generate a new double bond.

Links to other databases: BRENDA, EXPASY, KEGG, MetaCyc, PDB, CAS registry number:


1. Sorigue, D., Legeret, B., Cuine, S., Blangy, S., Moulin, S., Billon, E., Richaud, P., Brugiere, S., Coute, Y., Nurizzo, D., Muller, P., Brettel, K., Pignol, D., Arnoux, P., Li-Beisson, Y., Peltier, G. and Beisson, F. An algal photoenzyme converts fatty acids to hydrocarbons. Science 357 (2017) 903-907. [PMID: 28860382]

[EC created 2017]

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