Identification and characterization of lipases from Malassezia restricta, a causative agent of dandruff

FEMS Yeast Res. 2015 Nov;15(7):fov078. doi: 10.1093/femsyr/fov078. Epub 2015 Aug 21.


Dandruff, a skin disorder affecting 50% of the world population, is linked with proliferation of lipophilic yeasts of the genus Malassezia (particularly Malassezia globosa and M. restricta). Most Malassezia species show a unique lipid dependency and require external lipids for growth. Genome mining of the incomplete M. restricta genome led to the identification of eight lipase sequences. Sequences representing the class 3 and LIP lipase families were used to clone the lipases MrLip1, MrLip2 and MrLip3, recombinantly expressed in Pichia pastoris, and tested for their activity using mono-, di- and triacylglycerol substrates. Hydrolysis by the M. restricta lipase MrLip1 and MrLip2 (family class 3) was limited to the mono- and diacylglycerol, while MrLip3 (family LIP) hydrolyzed all three substrates. This result confirms that Malassezia family LIP lipases are responsible for the hydrolysis of triacylglycerols, the main component of human sebum. Furthermore, the information regarding lipases from M. restricta presented here might aid in the search for anti-dandruff agents.

Keywords: Malassezia restricta; dandruff; diacylglycerol-like lipase; lipases.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Cloning, Molecular
  • Dandruff / microbiology*
  • Humans
  • Lipase / classification
  • Lipase / genetics*
  • Lipase / metabolism*
  • Malassezia / enzymology*
  • Malassezia / genetics*
  • Pichia / genetics
  • Pichia / metabolism
  • Recombinant Proteins / genetics
  • Recombinant Proteins / metabolism
  • Substrate Specificity


  • Recombinant Proteins
  • Lipase