Mycological Progress

, Volume 16, Issue 5, pp 507–512 | Cite as

Production of fatty acid methyl esters and other bioactive compounds in elicited cultures of the fungus Mucor circinelloides

  • P. J. Sánchez-Pujante
  • B. Miras-Moreno
  • P. Soluyanova
  • V. Garre
  • M. A. Pedreño
  • Lorena Almagro
Original Article


In this work, the production of carotenoids and volatile compounds in Mucor circinelloides cell cultures treated with methyl jasmonate (MJ) and/or cyclodextrins (CD) was evaluated. CD increased the lutein concentration in the extracellular medium, reaching the highest levels in the combined treatment with MJ, whereas the levels of β-carotene were low. Therefore, the addition of CD to M. circinelloides cultures provokes a release of these compounds into the culture medium. Mucor circinelloides cultures also produced lichesterol, neoergosterol and ergone, suggesting that, under these stress conditions, this fungus diverts the carbon flow to sterol biosynthesis, which, in turn, is required for its survival. More interestingly, CD induced the secretion of sterols in a similar way to carotenoids. Mucor circinelloides cultures treated with MJ and/or CD also produced fatty acid methyl esters (FAMEs) and, in the presence of CD, they were released to culture medium, contributing to the formation of biodiesel. In this way, M. circinelloides cultures produced compounds of biotechnological interest and, therefore, these treated cultures can provide an alternative system, which is, at the same time, more sustainable, economical and ecological for their production.


Carotenoids Cyclodextrins Methyl jasmonate Mucor circinelloides cultures Volatile compounds 



This study was funded by Fundación Séneca - Agencia de Ciencia y Tecnología de la Región de Murcia (19876/GERM/15) and the Ministerio de Economía y Competitividad (no. BIO2014-51861-R).

Compliance with ethical standards

Conflict of interest

The authors declare no conflicting interests related to this publication.


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Copyright information

© German Mycological Society and Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  • P. J. Sánchez-Pujante
    • 1
  • B. Miras-Moreno
    • 1
  • P. Soluyanova
    • 1
  • V. Garre
    • 2
  • M. A. Pedreño
    • 1
  • Lorena Almagro
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Plant Biology, Faculty of BiologyUniversity of MurciaMurciaSpain
  2. 2.Department of Genetics and Microbiology, Faculty of BiologyUniversity of MurciaMurciaSpain

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