Aquatic Ecology

, Volume 36, Issue 2, pp 317–331 | Cite as

Lipid and hydrocarbon compositions of a collection strain and a wild sample of the green microalga Botryococcus

  • Galina S. Kalacheva
  • Natalia O. Zhila
  • Tatiana G. Volova


Lipid composition and hydrocarbon structure of two colonial green algae of the genus Botryococcus, i.e., a museum strain and a field sample collected for the first time from Lake Shira (Khakasia, Siberia), have been compared. Polar lipids, diacylglycerols, alcohols, triacylglycerols, sterols, sterol esters, free fatty acids and hydrocarbons have been identified among lipids in the laboratory culture. The dominant fraction in the museum strain was formed by polar lipids (up to 50% of the lipids) made up of fatty acids from C12 to C24. Palmitic, oleic, C16 - C18 dienoic and trienoic acids were the main fatty acids of the museum strain. Aliphatic hydrocarbons were found in the lipid of the museum strain. However, these amounted maximally to about 1% of the dry biomass at the end of exponential growth phase. The qualitative and quantitative compositions of FAs and hydrocarbons of the museum strain of Botryococcus, (registered at the Cambridge collection as Botryococcus braunii Kutz No LB 807/1 Droop 1950 H-252) differed from those of the Botryococcus strain described in the literature as Botryococcus braunii. The Botryococcus sp. found in Lake Shira is characterized by a higher lipid content (< 40% of the dry weight). Polar lipids, sterols, triacylglycerols, free fatty acids and hydrocarbons have been identified among lipids in the field sample. The main lipids in this sample were dienes and trienes (hydrocarbons < 60% of total lipid). Monounsaturated and very long chain monounsaturated fatty acids, including C28:1 and C32:1 acids, were identified in the Botryococcus found in Lake Shira. The chemo-taxonomic criteria allow us to unequivocally characterize the organism collected from Lake Shira as Botryococcus braunii, race A.

batch culture Botryococcus braunii fatty acids hydrocarbons lipids 


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© Kluwer Academic Publishers 2002

Authors and Affiliations

  • Galina S. Kalacheva
  • Natalia O. Zhila
  • Tatiana G. Volova

There are no affiliations available

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