The effect of salt stress on the production of canthaxanthin and astaxanthin by Chlorella zofingiensis grown under limited light intensity

Dan Pelah, Amnon Sintov, Ephraim Cohen

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

69 Scopus citations

Abstract

The fresh water green microalga Chlorella zofingiensis is known to accumulate ketocarotenoids - primarily astaxanthin but also canthaxanthin - when grown under stress conditions of high light irradiance and low nitrogen. We found that salt stress can replace light stress with respect to inducing carotenoid production: cells of C. zofingiensis grown under low light irradiance and subjected to salt and low nitrogen stress accumulated higher amounts of total secondary carotenoids than those growing under high light and low nitrogen stress. Furthermore, C. zofingiensis growing under conditions of salt stress and low light accumulated higher amounts of canthaxanthin than astaxanthin. It is suggested that for canthaxanthin accumulation under salt stress, light is not a limiting factor, but for astaxanthin accumulation high light irradiance is mandatory. These results may be applied in the future for the commercial production of canthaxanthin by C. zofingiensis in systems in which light availability is poor.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)483-486
Number of pages4
JournalWorld Journal of Microbiology and Biotechnology
Volume20
Issue number5
DOIs
StatePublished - 1 Jul 2004

Keywords

  • Astaxanthin
  • Chlorella zofingiensis
  • canthaxanthin
  • salt stress
  • secondary carotenoids

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biotechnology
  • Physiology
  • Applied Microbiology and Biotechnology

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