The oleaginous alga Chlorella protothecoides accumulates lipid in its biomass when grown in nitrogen-restricted conditions. To assess the relationship between nitrogen provision and lipid accumulation and to determine the contribution of photosynthesis in mixotrophic growth, C. protothecoides was grown in mixo- and heterotrophic nitrogen-limited continuous flow cultures. Lipid content increased with decreasing C/N, while biomass yield on glucose was not affected. Continuous production of high lipid levels (57% of biomass) was possible at high C/N (87–94). However, the lipid production rate (2.48 g L−1 d−1) was higher at D = 0.84 d−1 with C/N 37 than at D = 0.44 d−1 and C/N 87 even though the lipid content of the biomass was lower (38%). Photosynthesis contributed to biomass and lipid production in mixotrophic conditions, resulting in 13–38% reduction in CO2 production compared with heterotrophic cultures, demonstrating that photo- and heterotrophic growth occurred simultaneously in the same population.
- C/N ratio
- continuous flow culture
- mixotrophic growth
Wang, Y., Rischer, H., Eriksen, N. T., & Wiebe, M. (2013). Mixotrophic continuous flow cultivation of Chlorella protothecoides for lipids. Bioresource Technology, 144, 608-614. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.biortech.2013.07.027