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Chlorella vulgaris cultivation in airlift photobioreactor with transparent draft tube: effect of hydrodynamics, light and carbon dioxide on biochemical profile particularly ω-6/ω-3 fatty acid ratio

  • C. K. Madhubalaji
  • T Sarat Chandra
  • V. S. Chauhan
  • R. Sarada
  • Sandeep N. MudliarEmail author
Original Article
  • 35 Downloads

Abstract

Chlorella vulgaris is used for food and feed applications due to its nutraceutical, antioxidant and anticancer properties. An airlift photobioreactor comprising transparent draft tube was used for C. vulgaris cultivation. The effect of reactor parameters like hydrodynamics (0.3–1.5 vvm), light intensity (85–400 μmol m−2 s−1), photoperiod (12–24 h) and gas-phase carbon dioxide (CO2) concentration (5–15% v/v) were evaluated on microalgae and associated bacterial growth, biochemical profile; with special emphasis on ω-3, ω-6 fatty acids, and vitamin B12. The optimal growth of C. vulgaris without CO2 supplementation was observed at 1.2 vvm, which was associated with higher algal productivity, chlorophyll, vitamin B12 content, and bacterial load along with 72% of nitrate removal. The higher light intensity (400 μmol m−2 s−1) and photoperiod (24:0) increased biomass productivity and ω-3 fatty acid content (in lipid) up to 2–3 fold. The elevated levels of gas-phase CO2 concentration (15% v/v) enhanced EPA content up to 7% and biomass productivity up to 171 mg L−1 day−1. However, the increase in CO2 concentration lowered vitamin B12 content (up to 30%) and bacterial load (2–3 log). Also, all the cultivation conditions favoured desirable ω-6/ω-3 ratio(in the range of 1–2).

Keywords

Airlift photobioreactor C. vulgaris CO2 supplementation ω-3 and ω-6 fatty acids Vitamin B12 

Abbreviations

SFA

Saturated fatty acid

PUFA

Polyunsaturated fatty acid

MUFA

Monounsaturated fatty acid

ALA

α-Linolenic acid

EPA

Eicosapentaenoic acid

LPM

Litres per minute

PPFD

Photosynthetic photon flux density

PAR

Photosynthetic active radiation

FAME

Fatty acid methyl esters

SV

Saponification value

DU

Degree of unsaturation

LCSF

Long-chain saturated factor

IV

Iodine value

CN

Cetane number

CFPP

Cold filter plugging point

CO2

Carbon dioxide

Notes

Acknowledgements

The authors wish to thank the financial support of DBT, Govt. of India, New Delhi, India (Grant Number BT/PR6552/PBD/26/360/2012). CKMB is thankful to Council of Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR) for providing CSIR-SRF fellowship.

Compliance with ethical standards

Conflict of interest

The authors declare no conflict of interest.

Supplementary material

13197_2019_4118_MOESM1_ESM.docx (389 kb)
Supplementary material 1 (DOCX 388 kb)

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Copyright information

© Association of Food Scientists & Technologists (India) 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Plant Cell Biotechnology DepartmentCSIR-Central Food Technological Research InstituteMysoreIndia
  2. 2.Academy of Scientific and Innovative Research (AcSIR)GhaziabadIndia

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