Effects of temperature and ammonium on growth, pigment production and nitrogen uptake by four species of Porphyra (Bangiales, Rhodophyta) native to the New England coast

  • Jang K. KimEmail author
  • George P. Kraemer
  • Christopher D. Neefus
  • Ik Kyo Chung
  • Charles Yarish


Porphyra is one of the world’s most valued maricultured seaweeds and has been cultivated for several hundred years in Asia. The objective of this study was to produce critical information as a guide for the selection of an appropriate Porphyra species from coastal New England for the development of a land-based aquaculture system. Four Northwest Atlantic Porphyra species: P. leucosticta, P. amplissima, P. linearis and P. umbilicalis, were cultivated for 1 and 2 weeks at saturated light intensities (100–150 μmol photons m−2s−1) and six combinations of ammonium (25 and 250 μmoles L−1) and temperature (10, 15 and 20°C). Specific growth rate (SGR) increased with decreasing temperature in P. leucosticta, P. linearis and P. umbilicalis and increased with increasing temperature in P. amplissima. The SGR of all species was greater at the higher ammonium concentration. Porphyra linearis had the highest SGR, increasing in biomass by approximately 16% day−1. Phycoerythrin (PE) content was higher at 10°C and 250 μmoles L−1 in all species except P. amplissima. The PE content, measured as fresh weight (FW), of P. linearis (29 mg g−1 FW−1) and P. umbilicalis (26 mg g−1 FW−1) was significantly higher than the other two species. Tissue nitrogen content of all species measured in dry weight was on average 1.45% higher at 250 μmoles L−1 than at 25 μmoles L−1 ammonium concentration. Porphyra umbilicalis had the highest tissue nitrogen contents (6.76%) at 10°C and 250 μmoles L−1 ammonium. Based on these results, P. linearis and P. umbilicalis should be considered as potential candidates for bioremediation with finfish and shellfish mariculture.

Key words

Porphyra nutrient uptake temperature ammonium bioremediation mariculture 



We thank Dr. T. Bray and J. Day (University of New Hampshire) for their kind help in collecting materials of P. linearis and P. umbilicalis in Rye, N.H. We thank A. Lima, P. Boardman and D. Arbige for assistance with tank system management in the Rankin Laboratory, University of Connecticut at Avery Point. We also thank Drs. R. Carmona, S. Miller and R. Pereira who assisted in the Marine Biotechnology Laboratory, University of Connecticut at Stamford. Finally, we thank to two anonymous reviewers for invaluable comments. This study was supported by grants to C. Yarish from the State of Connecticut’s Critical Technologies Program, The Mohegan Tribal Nation, Connecticut Sea Grant College Program and grants to C. Yarish, G.P. Kraemer and C.D. Neefus from National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s National Marine Aquaculture Initiative (DOC/U.S.A.).


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, Inc. 2007

Authors and Affiliations

  • Jang K. Kim
    • 1
    • 5
    Email author
  • George P. Kraemer
    • 2
  • Christopher D. Neefus
    • 3
  • Ik Kyo Chung
    • 4
  • Charles Yarish
    • 5
  1. 1.Department of Ecology and Evolutionary BiologyUniversity of ConnecticutGrotonUSA
  2. 2.Department of Environmental ScienceSUNY Purchase CollegePurchaseUSA
  3. 3.Department of Plant BiologyUniversity of New HampshireDurhamUSA
  4. 4.Division of Earth Environmental SystemPusan National UniversityBusanSouth Korea
  5. 5.Department of Ecology and Evolutionary BiologyUniversity of ConnecticutStamfordUSA

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