Jump to Main Content
Production of protein extracts from Swedish red, green, and brown seaweeds, Porphyra umbilicalis Kützing, Ulva lactuca Linnaeus, and Saccharina latissima (Linnaeus) J. V. Lamouroux using three different methods
- Harrysson, Hanna, Hayes, Maria, Eimer, Friederike, Carlsson, Nils-Gunnar, Toth, Gunilla B., Undeland, Ingrid
- Journal of applied phycology 2018 v.30 no.6 pp. 3565-3580
- Porphyra, Saccharina latissima, Ulva lactuca, ammonium, cell walls, chemical precipitation, digestibility, fatty acids, ingredients, macroalgae, polyphenols, protein sources, solubilization, solvents, sonication, vegetable protein
- The demand for vegetable proteins increases globally and seaweeds are considered novel and promising protein sources. However, the tough polysaccharide-rich cell walls and the abundance of polyphenols reduce the extractability and digestibility of seaweed proteins. Therefore, food grade, scalable, and environmentally friendly protein extraction techniques are required. To date, little work has been carried out on developing such methods taking into consideration the structural differences between seaweed species. In this work, three different protein extraction methods were applied to three Swedish seaweeds (Porphyra umbilicalis, Ulva lactuca, and Saccharina latissima). These methods included (I) a traditional method using sonication in water and subsequent ammonium sulfate-induced protein precipitation, (II) the pH-shift protein extraction method using alkaline protein solubilization followed by isoelectric precipitation, and (III) the accelerated solvent extraction (ASE®) method where proteins are extracted after pre-removal of lipids and phlorotannins. The highest protein yields were achieved using the pH-shift method applied to P. umbilicalis (22.6 ± 7.3%) and S. latissima (25.1 ± 0.9%). The traditional method resulted in the greatest protein yield when applied to U. lactuca (19.6 ± 0.8%). However, the protein concentration in the produced extracts was highest for all three species using the pH-shift method (71.0 ± 3.7%, 51.2 ± 2.1%, and 40.7 ± 0.5% for P. umbilicalis, U. lactuca, and S. latissima, respectively). In addition, the pH-shift method was found to concentrate the fatty acids in U. lactuca and S. latissima by 2.2 and 1.6 times, respectively. The pH-shift method can therefore be considered a promising strategy for producing seaweed protein ingredients for use in food and feed.