P45 Arctic snow algae for biomass and lipid production at low temperatures?

P45 Arctic snow algae for biomass and lipid production at low temperatures?

Chris J Hulatt1, Orsolya Berecz1, Einar Egeland1, Rene Wijffels2 and Viswanath Kiron1

1Biosciences And Aquaculture, Nord University, Bodø, NOR

2Biosciences And Aquaculture / Bioprocess Engineering, Nord University / Wageningen University, Bodø / Wageningen, NOR

Microalgae offer excellent opportunities for producing food and fuel commodities, but in colder climates the low growth rates of many varieties may hamper production. We tested Arctic snow and soil microalgae in photobioreactors, to establish whether satisfactory growth and lipid production could be obtained at lower water temperatures. Five varieties originating from Svalbard were cultivated at 6°C, and we obtained high cell densities and high productivity in batch and semi-continuous cultures. Total lipids reached 39% of the cell dry weight, and separation into polar and neutral (triaclyglyceride; TAG) fractions revealed diverse patterns of neutral lipid accumulation. The results show that alternative varieties of cold-adapted microalgae might provide an opportunity to produce biomass and lipids in lower water temperatures. The high proportion of mono and polyunsaturated fatty acids in neutral lipids may however impact the suitability of these strains for food and fuel applications respectively.