Journal of Applied Phycology

, Volume 4, Issue 1, pp 31–37 | Cite as

High yield mixotrophic cultures of the marine microalga Tetraselmis suecica (Kylin) Butcher (Prasinophyceae)

  • Angeles Cid
  • Julio Abalde
  • Concepción Herrero


The effects of three organic compounds were tested on one of the most used marine micro-algae in the aquaculture of molluscs and crustaceans, Tetraselmis suecica. Studies were made in axenic conditions with yeast extract, peptone and glucose added to the culture medium, each alone, in combinations of two or all together. Medium without any organic compound was used for the control. Cultures containing yeast extract grew best, reaching maximum cell density of 3.79 × 106 and 3.84 × 106 cells ml−1.

The organic carbon source affected the biochemical composition. The components most affected were the carbohydrates, with values between 6.5 pg cell−1 in control cultures and 48.5 pg cell−1 in glucose cultures. Protein content ranged between 27.5 pg cell−1 in control cultures and 88.6 pg cell−1 in yeast + glucose + peptone cultures. The lipid content changed little. Maximum protein yields were reached in cultures with yeast + glucose and with yeast - glucose - peptone, with values of 24.6 and 28.2 mg 1−1 d−1, respectively. These values are 22 and 25 times those in control cultures. A maximum carbohydrate yield of 7.9 mg carbohydrate per litre per day was obtained in yeast + glucose + peptone cultures, 27 times that in the control cultures. The maximum lipid yield was obtained with yeast + glucose + peptone and yeast + glucose. Maximum energy values were 308 kcal 1 in yeast extract - glucose - peptone cultures and 279 kcal 1−1 in yeast extract + glucose cultures. Gross energy values in control cultures were 24.5 kcal 1−1, but peptone cultures presented the minimum energy value, 22 kcal 1−1. The yeast extract: glucose ratio in the culture medium was optimized. A ratio 2:1 produced the best yields in cells, protein, carbohydrate and gross energy.

Key words

Tetraselmis suecica mixotrophic cultures 


Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.


  1. Atlas RM, Bartha R (1987) Microbial Ecology, Fundamentals and Applications. The Benjamin/Cummings Publishing Company, Inc. California, 533 ppGoogle Scholar
  2. Bayne BL (1976) The biology of the ‘mussel larvae’ In: Bayne BL ded.), Marine Mussels: Their Ecology and Physiology. Cambridge U.P., Cambridge, 81–120.Google Scholar
  3. Becker EW, Venkataman LV (1982) Biotechnology and Exploitation of Algae. The Indian Approach. Deutsche Gesellschaft für Technische Zusammenarbeit Gmbh, Eschborn, 216 ppGoogle Scholar
  4. Borowitzka MA (1988a) Vitamins and fine chemicals from micro-algae. In: Borowitzka MA, Borowitzka LJ deds), Micro-algal Biotechnology. Cambridge U.P., Cambridge, 153–196.Google Scholar
  5. Borowitzka MA (1988b) Fats, oils and hydrocarbons. In: Borowitzka MA, Borowitzka LJ (eds), Micro-algal Biotechnology. Cambridge U.P., Cambridge, 257–287.Google Scholar
  6. Cohen Z (1986) Products from microalgae. In: Richmond A (ed.), Handbook of Microalgae Mass Culture. CRC Press, Florida, 421–453.Google Scholar
  7. De la Noue J, De Pauw N (1988) The potential of microalgal biotechnology: A review of production and uses of microalgae. Biotech. Adv. 6: 725–770.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  8. De Pauw N, Verboven J, Claus C (1983) Large-scale microalgal production for nursery rearing of marine bivalves. Aquacult. Eng. 2: 27–47.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  9. Droop MR (1974) Heterotrophy of carbon. In: Stewart WDP (ed.), Algal Physiology and Biochemistry. Blackwell, Oxford, 530–559.Google Scholar
  10. Fabregas, J, Abalde J, Herrero C, Cabezas B, Veiga M (1984) Growth of the marine microalgae Tetraselmis suecica in batch cultures with different salinities and nutrient concentrations. Aquaculture 42: 207–245.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  11. Fabregas J, Herrero C (1985) Marine microalgae as a potential source of single cell protein (SCP). Appl. Microbiol. Biotechnol. 23: 110–113.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  12. Fabregas J, Herrero C (1986) Marine microalgae as a potential source of minerals in fish diets. Aquaculture 51: 237–243.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  13. Fabregas J, Herrero C, Cabezas B, Abalde J (1985) Mass culture and biochemical variability of the marine microalga Tetraselmis suecica (Kylin) Butch with high nutrient concentrations. Aquaculture 49: 231–241.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  14. Flynn KJ, Syrett PJ (1986) Utilization of L-lysine and L-arginine by the diatom Phaeodactylum tricornutum. Mar. Biol. 90: 159–163.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  15. Kochert G (1978a) Protein determination by dye-binding. In: Hellebust JA, Craigie JS (eds), Handbook of Phycological Methods. Physiological and Biochemical Methods. Cambridge U.P., Cambridge, 95–97.Google Scholar
  16. Kochert G (1978b) Quantitation of macromolecular components of microalgae. In: Hellebust JA, Craigie JS (eds), Handbook of Phycological Methods. Physiological and Biochemical Methods, Cambridge U.P., Cambridge, 189–195.Google Scholar
  17. Laing I, Utting SD (1980) The influence of salinity in the production of two commercially important unicellular algae. Aquaculture 21: 79–86.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  18. Lee HY, Lee SY, Park BK (1989) The estimation of algal yield parameters associated with mixotrophic and photoheterotrophic growth under batch cultivation. Biomass 18: 153–160.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  19. Marsh JB, Weinstein DB (1966) Simple charring method for determination of lipids. J. Lipid Res. 7: 574–576.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  20. Murakami M, Makabe K, Okada S, Yamaguchi K, Konosu S (1988) Screening of biologically active compounds in microalgae. Nippon Suisan Gakkaishi 54: 1035–1039.Google Scholar
  21. National Research Council (1977) Nutrient requirements of warmwater fishes. National Acad. Press, Washington D.C., 78 ppGoogle Scholar
  22. Neilson AH, Blankley F, Lewin RA (1973) Growth with organic carbon and energy sources. In: Stein JR (ed.), Handbook of Phycological Methods. Culture Methods and Growth Measurements. Cambridge U.P., Cambridge, 275–285.Google Scholar
  23. Ogawa T, Aiba S (1981) Bioenergetic analysis of mixotrophic growth in Chlorella vulgaris and Scenedesmus acutus Biotech. Bioeng. 23: 1121–1132.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  24. Oswald WJ (1988) Micro-algae and waste-water treatment. In: Borowitzka MA, Borowitzka LJ deds). Micro-algal Biotechnology. Cambridge U.P., Cambridge, 305–328.Google Scholar
  25. Richmond AE (1986) Microalgaculture. CRC Crit. Rev. Biotech. 4: 369–438.Google Scholar
  26. Richmond AE (1990) Large scale microalgal culture and applications. Prog. Phycol. Res. 7: 269–330.Google Scholar
  27. Schanz F, Zahler U (1981) Prediction of algal growth in batch cultures; Schweiz. Z. Hydrobiol. 43: 103–113.Google Scholar
  28. Trevan M, Mak A (1988) Immobilized algae and their potential for use as biocatalysts. Trends Biotech. 6: 68–73.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  29. Ukeles R, Rse WE (1976) Observations on organic carbon utilization by photosynthetic marine microalgae. Mar. Biol. 37: 11–28.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  30. Venkataraman LV, Nigam BP, Ramanathan PK (1980) Rural oriented freshwater cultivation of algae in India. In; Shelef G & Soeder CJ deds), Algae Biomass. Production and Use. Elsevier/North Holland Biomedical Press, Amsterdam, 81–95.Google Scholar
  31. Walne PR (1974) Culture of Bivalve Molluscs. 50 Years' Experience at Conwy. Fishing New Books, Furnham, 173 ppGoogle Scholar
  32. Wikfors GH (1986) Altering growth and gross chemical composition of two microalgal molluscan food species by varying nitrate and phosphate. Aquaculture 59: 1–14.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  33. Wikfors GH, Twarog JW, Jr, Ukeles R (1984) Influence of chemical composition of algal food sources on growth of juvenile oysters, Crassostrea virginica. Biol. Bull. 167: 251–263.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Kluwer Academic Publishers 1992

Authors and Affiliations

  • Angeles Cid
    • 1
  • Julio Abalde
    • 1
  • Concepción Herrero
    • 1
  1. 1.Laboratorio de Microbiología, Dpto. Biología Celular y MolecularFacultad de Ciencias, Universidad de La Coruña, Campus da Zapateira s/nLa CoruñaSpain

Personalised recommendations