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Enhancement of microalga Haematococcus pluvialis growth and astaxanthin production by electrical treatment

Kim, Jee Young, Lee, Changsu, Jeon, Min Seo, Park, Jaewon, Choi, Yoon-E
Bioresource technology 2018 v.268 pp. 815-819
Haematococcus pluvialis, astaxanthin, electric potential, electrical treatment, microalgae
In this study, we investigated the effects of electrical treatment on Haematococcus pluvialis growth. The slow growth of H. pluvialis is a major limitation for its mass production. We discovered that electrical treatment may promote the growth of H. pluvialis. To evaluate optimal growth-promoting conditions, the algal growth rate was investigated at various voltages. The optimum current was identified as 100 mA (voltage: 25 V). In comparison with the non-treated cells, those subjected to electrical treatment showed a 1.2 fold increase in cell density. Further experiments confirmed the direct impact of electrical treatment on the growth of H. pluvialis. The periodic application of electrical voltage resulted in a significant increase in the dry weight and astaxanthin production. The astaxanthin content in the periodic application of electrical treatment was 32.6 mg/L, which was a 10% increase compared to those in the non-treated controls. This strategy may serve as a novel approach to enhance H. pluvialis growth as well as astaxanthin production.