Isolation and evaluation of oil-producing microalgae from subtropical coastal and brackish waters

Lim, David K.Y., Gard, Sourabh, Timmins, Matthew, Zhang, Eugene S.B., Thomas-Hall, Skye R., Schuhmann, Holger, Li, Yan, and Schenk, Peer M. (2012) Isolation and evaluation of oil-producing microalgae from subtropical coastal and brackish waters. PLoS ONE, 7 (7). e40751. pp. 1-13.

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Abstract

Microalgae have been widely reported as a promising source of biofuels, mainly based on their high areal productivity of biomass and lipids as triacylglycerides and the possibility for cultivation on non-arable land. The isolation and selection of suitable strains that are robust and display high growth and lipid accumulation rates is an important prerequisite for their successful cultivation as a bioenergy source, a process that can be compared to the initial selection and domestication of agricultural crops. We developed standard protocols for the isolation and cultivation for a range of marine and brackish microalgae. By comparing growth rates and lipid productivity, we assessed the potential of subtropical coastal and brackish microalgae for the production of biodiesel and other oil-based bioproducts. This study identified Nannochloropsis sp., Dunaniella salina and new isolates of Chlorella sp. and Tetraselmis sp. as suitable candidates for a multiple-product algae crop. We conclude that subtropical coastal microalgae display a variety of fatty acid profiles that offer a wide scope for several oil-based bioproducts, including biodiesel and omega-3 fatty acids. A biorefinery approach for microalgae would make economical production more feasible but challenges remain for efficient harvesting and extraction processes for some species.

Item ID: 28109
Item Type: Article (Research - C1)
ISSN: 1932-6203
Additional Information:

This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited.

Funders: Australian Research Council (ARC), Pacific Seeds, Advanta India
Projects and Grants: LP0883380, LP0990558, North Queensland and Pacific Biodiesel, Queensland See Scallops Trading
Date Deposited: 24 Jul 2013 01:36
FoR Codes: 06 BIOLOGICAL SCIENCES > 0607 Plant Biology > 060701 Phycology (incl Marine Grasses) @ 50%
10 TECHNOLOGY > 1003 Industrial Biotechnology > 100302 Bioprocessing, Bioproduction and Bioproducts @ 50%
SEO Codes: 85 ENERGY > 8505 Renewable Energy > 850501 Biofuel (Biomass) Energy @ 50%
97 EXPANDING KNOWLEDGE > 970106 Expanding Knowledge in the Biological Sciences @ 50%
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