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Assessment of Fatty Acids Profile and Omega-3 Polyunsaturated Fatty Acid Production by the Oleaginous Marine Thraustochytrid Aurantiochytrium sp. T66 Cultivated on Volatile Fatty Acids

Authors
  • Patel, Alok
  • Rova, Ulrika
  • Christakopoulos, Paul
  • Matsakas, Leonidas
Type
Published Article
Journal
Biomolecules
Publisher
MDPI AG
Publication Date
Apr 29, 2020
Volume
10
Issue
5
Identifiers
DOI: 10.3390/biom10050694
PMID: 32365742
PMCID: PMC7277355
Source
PubMed Central
Keywords
License
Green

Abstract

Thraustochytrids are considered natural producers of omega-3 fatty acids as they can synthesize up to 70% docosahexaenoic acids (DHA) of total lipids. However, commercial and sustainable production of microbial DHA is limited by elevated cost of carbon substrates for thraustochytrids cultivation. This problem can be addressed by utilizing low-cost renewable substrates. In the present study, growth, lipid accumulation and fatty acid profiles of the marine thraustochytrid Aurantiochytrium sp . T66 (ATCC-PRA-276) cultivated on volatile fatty acids (C1, formic acid; C2, acetic acid; C3, propionic acid; C4, butyric acid; C5, valeric acid and C6, caproic acid) and glucose as control were evaluated for the first time. This strain showed an inability to utilize C3, C5 and C6 as a substrate when provided at >2 g/L, while efficiently utilizing C2 and C4 up to 40 g/L. The highest cell dry weight (12.35 g/L) and total lipid concentration (6.59 g/L) were attained when this strain was cultivated on 40 g/L of butyric acid, followed by cultivation on glucose (11.87 g/L and 5.34 g/L, respectively) and acetic acid (8.70 g/L and 3.43 g/L, respectively). With 40 g/L butyric acid, the maximum docosahexaenoic acid content was 2.81 g/L, corresponding to 42.63% w/w of total lipids and a yield of 0.23 g/gcell dry weight (CDW). This marine oleaginous microorganism showed an elevated potential for polyunsaturated fatty acids production at higher acetic and butyric acid concentrations than previously reported. Moreover, fluorescence microscopy revealed that growth on butyric acid caused cell size to increase to 45 µm, one of the largest values reported for oleaginous microorganisms, as well as the presence of numerous tiny lipid droplets.

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