Porphyridium cruentum A-408 and Planktothrix A-404 retain their capacity to produce biotechnologically exploitable metabolites after cryopreservation

  • Hubert Hédoin
  • Jane Pearson
  • John G. Day
  • Denise Philip
  • Andrew J. Young
  • Tony J. Hall


Long-term phenotypic and genotypic stability is a fundamental prerequisite for the successful biotechnological exploitation of any micro-organism, as without stable starter cultures productivity can not be guaranteed. In this study two biotechnological algal production strains; Porphyridium cruentum A-408, which produces zeaxanthin, and Planktothrix A-404, which produces a potent cytotoxin, were successfully cryopreserved using a two step protocol (cooling to −40 C prior to plunging into liquid nitrogen). Post-thaw viability levels of 114 ± 27% were obtained for P. cruentum A-408 and 67 ± 18% for Planktothrix A-404. Unchanged productivity levels of Zeaxanthin and beta-carotene (77% and 12% of total carotenoids respectively) were obtained in batches of P. cruentum A-408 produced from standard (serial transfer) and utilizing post-thaw (ex-cryopreserved) inocula. In addition, cytotoxin production by Planktothrix A-404 was not influenced by the origin of the inoculum, with standard (serial transfer) and post-thaw (ex-cryopreserved) inocula giving high levels of activity.


algal biotechnology cryopreservation zeaxanthin cytotoxicity 


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, Inc. 2006

Authors and Affiliations

  • Hubert Hédoin
    • 1
  • Jane Pearson
    • 2
  • John G. Day
    • 2
    • 3
  • Denise Philip
    • 4
  • Andrew J. Young
    • 4
  • Tony J. Hall
    • 1
    • 5
  1. 1.Aquaartis S.A.Saint-HerblainFrance
  2. 2.CEH WindermereAmblesideCumbriaUK
  3. 3.Scottish Association for Marine ScienceDunbeg, ArgyllUK
  4. 4.Liverpool John Moores UniversityLiverpoolUK
  5. 5.TH ConsultingLe Chateau d'OlonneFrance

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