Potential of Microalgae Carotenoids for Industrial Application

  • Eleane A. Cezare-Gomes
  • Lauris del Carmen Mejia-da-Silva
  • Lina S. Pérez-Mora
  • Marcelo C. Matsudo
  • Lívia S. Ferreira-Camargo
  • Anil Kumar Singh
  • João Carlos Monteiro de CarvalhoEmail author


Microalgae cultivation, when compared to the growth of higher plants, presents many advantages such as faster growth, higher biomass productivity, and smaller land area requirement for cultivation. For this reason, microalgae are an alternative platform for carotenoid production when compared to the traditional sources. Currently, commercial microalgae production is not well developed but, fortunately, there are several studies aiming to make the large-scale production feasible by, for example, employing different cultivation systems. This review focuses on the main carotenoids from microalgae, comparing them to the traditional sources, as well as a critical analysis about different microalgae cultivation regimes that are currently available and applicable for carotenoid accumulation. Throughout this review paper, we present relevant information about the main commercial microalgae carotenoid producers; the comparison between carotenoid content from food, vegetables, fruits, and microalgae; and the great importance and impact of these molecule applications, such as in food (nutraceuticals and functional foods), cosmetics and pharmaceutical industries, feed (colorants and additives), and healthcare area. Lastly, the different operating systems applied to these photosynthetic cultivations are critically discussed, and conclusions and perspectives are made concerning the best operating system for acquiring high cell densities and, consequently, high carotenoid accumulation.


Carotenoids Carotenoid sources Microalgae Microalgae application Cultivation process 



The authors acknowledge the Coordenação de Aperfeiçoamento de Pessoal de Nível Superior (CAPES) and Fundação de Amparo à Pesquisa do Estado de São Paulo (FAPESP 2017/24486-0) for the fellowship.

Compliance with Ethical Standards

Conflict of Interest

The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.


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© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC, part of Springer Nature 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  • Eleane A. Cezare-Gomes
    • 1
  • Lauris del Carmen Mejia-da-Silva
    • 1
  • Lina S. Pérez-Mora
    • 1
  • Marcelo C. Matsudo
    • 2
  • Lívia S. Ferreira-Camargo
    • 3
  • Anil Kumar Singh
    • 4
  • João Carlos Monteiro de Carvalho
    • 1
    Email author return OK on get
  1. 1.Department of Biochemical and Pharmaceutical TechnologyUniversity of São PauloSão PauloBrazil
  2. 2.Institute of Natural ResourcesFederal University of ItajubáItajubáBrazil
  3. 3.Center of Natural and Human SciencesFederal University of ABCSanto AndréBrazil
  4. 4.Department of PharmacyUniversity of São PauloSão PauloBrazil

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