Environmental Science and Pollution Research

, Volume 26, Issue 8, pp 7589–7600 | Cite as

Influence of nutrient formulations on growth, lipid yield, carbon partitioning and biodiesel quality potential of Botryococcus sp. and Chlorella sp.

  • Rashi VishwakarmaEmail author
  • Dolly Wattal Dhar
  • Sudhir Saxena
Research Article


The study was conducted to analyse the influence of three nutrient formulations, namely BG-11 medium, BBM and TAP medium, on growth potential and lipid yield of two microalgal genera (Botryococcus sp. and Chlorella sp.) and to study the roles of N, P and other major nutrients. The study focussed on the general patterns of starch and lipid synthesis and storage and to further assess how photosynthetic carbon partitioning into starch and lipid is altered by conditions in growth media such as N and C presence as seen in BG11 medium which are known to induce neutral lipid production and the lack of it in BBM and TAP medium. BG-11 medium performed better as compared to BBM and TAP medium in terms of biomass productivity and lipid yield. The lipid yield was highest in Botryococcus sp. (63.03% dry wt.) and Chlorella sp. (50.27% dry wt.) at 30th day of incubation. Mean biomass productivity was highest for Botryococcus in BBM medium (6.14 mg/L/day) and for Chlorella in BG-11 medium (4.97 mg/L/day). Mean lipid productivity (50.78% and 39.36%) was highest in BG11 medium for both Botryococcus and Chlorella species, respectively. A sharp decline in sugar content was observed in the late stationary phase of growth from 30th day to 45th day. Fatty acid methyl ester (FAME) profile of the extracted lipids showed predominantly oleic acid, followed by palmitic acid and stearic acid in both the strains when grown in BG-11 medium. The other biodiesel quality parameters were in accordance with the international standards. A complex relationship was found between chemical composition and biodiesel properties. Proximity analysis indicated that the fuel properties of biodiesels are determined by a number of parameters and by the combination of different chemical compositions. The results provide an insight into organic carbon partitioning into lipid compounds and how the organism’s lipid metabolism changes due to N-deplete culturing in TAP medium and inorganic carbon source availability as seen in BG-11 and BBM medium.


Lipid Nutrient media Biodiesel FAMEs Biomass Microalgae 



The authors are grateful to Director, IARI, New Delhi, for essential facilities.

Funding information

The study is financially supported by the Department of Biotechnology, Govt. of India under Indo-Denmark Collaborative Project.

Compliance with ethical standards

Conflict of interest

The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag GmbH Germany, part of Springer Nature 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  • Rashi Vishwakarma
    • 1
    Email author
  • Dolly Wattal Dhar
    • 1
  • Sudhir Saxena
    • 1
  1. 1.Centre for Conservation and Utilisation of Blue Green AlgaeICAR-Indian Agricultural Research InstituteNew DelhiIndia

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