Applied Biochemistry and Biotechnology

, Volume 182, Issue 2, pp 495–510 | Cite as

Use of Crude Glycerol as Sole Carbon Source for Microbial Lipid Production by Oleaginous Yeasts

  • Li-ping Liu
  • Yang Hu
  • Wen-yong Lou
  • Ning Li
  • Hong WuEmail author
  • Min-hua ZongEmail author


Crude glycerol, discharged from biodiesel production process, is a potential carbon source for microbial lipid production. The capability of using crude glycerol as sole carbon source for microbial lipid production by oleaginous yeasts Trichosporon fermentans and Trichosporon cutaneum was investigated for the first time. T. fermentans and T. cutaneum could use crude glycerol for efficient lipid production, and the optimal glycerol concentration for which were 50 and 70 g/L, respectively. The optimum nitrogen source, C/N, inoculum concentration, and pH were yeast extract + peptone, 60, 10.0%, and 6.0, respectively. The most suitable culture temperature for T. fermentans and T. cutaneum were 28 and 30 °C, respectively. Under the optimal conditions, the maximum biomass, lipid content, lipid yield, and lipid coefficient of T. fermentans and T. cutaneum were 16.0 g/L, 32.4%, 5.2 g/L, and 16.5%, and 17.4 g/L, 32.2%, 5.6 g/L, and 17.0%, respectively. Moreover, it was found that methanol present in the crude glycerol had minor influence on the lipid production. Addition of surfactant potassium oleate into the medium could slightly stimulate the cell growth and lipid accumulation of both yeasts. This study shows that T. fermentans and T. cutaneum are promising strains for lipid production on crude glycerol.


Microbial lipid production Oleaginous yeast Crude glycerol Methanol Surfactant 



We acknowledge the Natural Science Foundation of Guangdong Province (No. 2015A030313217), the National Natural Science Foundation of China (No. 31671852), and the Science and Technology Project of Guangdong Province (No. 2013B010404005) for financial support.

Supplementary material

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Supplementary Fig. 1 (DOCX 101 kb)
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Supplementary Fig. 2 (DOCX 46 kb)
12010_2016_2340_MOESM3_ESM.docx (167 kb)
Supplementary Fig. 3 (DOCX 166 kb)


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 2016

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.School of Bioscience and BioengineeringSouth China University of TechnologyGuangzhouChina
  2. 2.School of Food Science and EngineeringSouth China University of TechnologyGuangzhouChina
  3. 3.Guangdong Province Key Laboratory for Green Processing of Natural Products and Product SafetyGuangzhouChina

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