2015-09-14 | Publikation | International | Rohstoffe

Nature article on screening for oleaginous algae

Micro-algae synthesize high levels of lipids, carbohydrates and proteins photoautotrophically, thus attracting considerable interest for the biotechnological production of fuels, environmental remediation, functional foods and nutraceuticals. Currently, only a few micro-algae species are grown commercially at large-scale, primarily for “health-foods” and pigments. For “fuel to pharma” products, high lipid productivity strains are required. The authors present a screen concentrating on marine micro-algal strains, which are suitable for scale-up. Mass-Spectrophotometric analysis (MS) of nitrogen (N) and carbon (C) was subsequently validated by measurement of total fatty acids (TFA) by Gas-Chromatography (GC). This identified a rapid and accurate screening strategy based on elemental analysis. The screen identified Nannochloropsis oceanica and a marine isolate of Chlorella vulgaris as the best lipid producers. Analysis of C, N, protein, carbohydrate and Fatty Acid (FA) composition identified a suite of strains for further biotechnological applications e.g. Dunaliella polymorpha, significantly the most productive for carbohydrates, and Cyclotella cryptica.

Source: Nature