Genetic Approaches and cultivation protocols to unravel MEtabolite production by Porphyra spp. targeted towards human and plant health applications.


Macroalgae or seaweeds are internationally recognized as an essential link in the development of a circular bioeconomy and are as such specifically mentioned in EU policy such as the Green Deal, Farm to Fork, and the EU4Algae initiative. The GAME project will address knowledge gaps that impede current valorisation of European Porphyra, a genus of red algae that is farmed at large scale in Asia for human food (nori), but Porphyra has also potential for use in various biotechnological applications, including the production of bioactive compounds, food additives, and renewable energy. 

The life cycle of Porphyra involves alternation between a haploid and diploid phase, which offers a great opportunity towards stain selection, but also poses a large challenge towards selection and control for cultivation purposes. The covid pandemic and energy crisis have affected global logistics chains impacting supply and the timely delivery of many ingredients. This has resulted in an increased awareness of companies and governments of the crucial importance of local production of high-quality ingredients especially for the health and agrifood sectors.


GAME will leverage from Porphyra‘s inter- and intra-specific genetic and biochemical variability to elucidate the mechanisms behind bioactive metabolite production (phycobiliproteins, sulfated polysaccharides and mycosporine-like amino acids (MAA), flavonoids and other important bioactive compounds), tailored to applications as nutraceuticals, biostimulants UV protectans for crops, and biocontrol products. The innovation lies in using linking biological processes (growth, reproduction, secondary metabolite production) with state-of-the-art genetics and demonstrating the action of bioactive metabolites as nutraceuticals and agricultural-biologicals. The research of GAME will lead to targeted life cycle control and cultivation protocols.

Project details

Project type
Innovation Programme
Biobased Value Chains
Project status
Approved on
Project date
€2 180 945
€2 180 945