Journal of Applied Phycology

, Volume 8, Issue 4–5, pp 389–396 | Cite as

Environmental effects on growth and biochemical composition ofNitzschia inconspicua Grunow

  • Wan-Loy Chu
  • Siew-Moi Phang
  • Swee-Hock Goh


The effects of nitrate and silicate levels, and carbon source on growth, biochemical composition and fatty acid composition ofNitzschia inconspicua were investigated using batch cultures. Within the range of silicate levels supplied (8.8–176 μM), no marked variations in growth trend, biochemical composition or fatty acid composition were shown. Biomass at stationary phase, ranging from 64–66 mg ash-free dry weight (AFDW) L−1, and specific growth rate (μ) based on chlorophylla (0.41–0.50 d−1) of the cultures grown within 0.3–3.0 mM NaNO3 were not significantly different. Cultures supplemented with glucose (0.1 % w/v), acetate (0.1 % w/v) or 5% CO2 attained higher biomass (85, 85, 97 mg AFDW L−1) than the control which was grown in synthetic seawater and agitated by magnetic stirring. Cells grown at <3.0 mM NaNO3 contained higher carbohydrate contents (14.8–21.5% AFDW) than those grown at 3.0 mM (4.0% AFDW). Lipid content increased at the expense of proteins in cells aerated with 5% CO2. The dominant fatty acids, 16:0 and 16:1, ranged from 35.7–45.0% and 36.4–45.4% total fatty acids (TFA), respectively, while the relative proportions of 20:4 (n-6) and 20:5 (n-3) ranged from 1.7–5.4% and 3.4–5.9% TFA respectively. Cultures aerated with 5% CO2 attained the highest biomass (97 mg AFDW L−1) and yield of 20:5 (n-3) (0.34 mg L−1).

Key words

Nitzschia inconspicua diatoms lipids fatty acids eicosapentaenoic acid silicate nitrogen carbon source 


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Copyright information

© Kluwer Academic Publishers 1996

Authors and Affiliations

  • Wan-Loy Chu
    • 1
  • Siew-Moi Phang
    • 1
  • Swee-Hock Goh
    • 1
  1. 1.Institute of Advanced StudiesUniversity of MalayaKuala LumpurMalaysia

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