Combined effect of initial biomass density and nitrogen concentration on growth and astaxanthin production of Haematococcus pluvialis (Chlorophyta) in outdoor cultivation

Junfeng Wang, Milton R. Sommerfeld, Congming Lu, Qiang Hu

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

34 Scopus citations

Abstract

Nitrogen availability and cell density each affects growth and cellular astaxanthin content of Haematococcus pluvialis, but possible combined effects of these two factors on the content and productivity of astaxanthin, especially under outdoor culture conditions, is less understood. In this study, the effects of the initial biomass densities IBDs of 0.1, 0.5, 0.8, 1.5, 2.7, 3.5, and 5.0 g L-1 DW and initial nitrogen concentrations of 0, 4.4, 8.8, and 17.6 mM nitrate on growth and cellular astaxanthin content of H. pluvialis Flotow K-0084 were investigated in outdoor glass column photobioreactors in a batch culture mode. A low IBD of 0.1 g L-1 DW led to photo-bleaching of the culture within 1-2 days. When the IBD was 0.5 g L-1 and above, the rate at which the increase in biomass density and the astaxanthin content on a per cell basis was higher at lower IBD. When the IBD was optimal (i.e., 0.8 g L-1), the maximum astaxanthin content of 3.8% of DW was obtained in the absence of nitrogen, whereas the maximum astaxanthin productivity of 16.0 mg L-1 d-1 was obtained in the same IBD culture containing 4.4 mM nitrogen. The strategies for achieving maximum Haematococcus biomass productivity and for maximum cellular astaxanthin content are discussed.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)193-202
Number of pages10
JournalAlgae
Volume28
Issue number2
DOIs
StatePublished - Jul 11 2013

Keywords

  • Astaxanthin
  • Cell density
  • Haematococcus pluvialis
  • Nitrogen
  • Outdoor culture
  • Photobioreactor

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Ecology, Evolution, Behavior and Systematics
  • Aquatic Science
  • Plant Science

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