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Effect of the cultivation mode on red pigments production from Monascus ruber

Hajjaj, Hassan, Goma, Gerard, François, Jean M.
International journal of food science & technology 2015 v.50 no.8 pp. 1731-1736
Monascus ruber, carbon, carbon nitrogen ratio, citrinin, fermentation, fungi, glucose, glutamic acid, nitrogen, pigments
In submerged cultures performed in chemically defined fermentation medium containing glucose and glutamate, the growth and production of water‐soluble red pigments and citrinin by the filamentous fungus Monascus ruber were studied under various carbon/nitrogen (C/N) ratios. The specific production of the red pigments was optimal at a glucose/glutamate ratio of about 10 and then steadily decreased at higher C/N ratio. In contrast, the production of the mycotoxin increased with increased C/N with an optimum in the range of 30–45. In a fed‐batch mode, it was also found that the production of pigments was not favoured in fed‐batch mode by feeding the medium with glucose while keeping the C/N ratio lower than 10. This low production likely resulted from concurrent high accumulation of L‐malic acid that was reported to inhibit this production. In contrast, this mode of cultivation was rather favourable for the production of the mycotoxin.