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Abstract Detail

Phycological Section

Hunt, James [1], Wilson, William [2], Countway, Peter [3].

Enhancement of lipid production in microalgae by dodecane addition and nitrate limitation.

Algae are a renewable fuel source that has the potential to replace our dependence on fossil fuels. These photosynthetic organisms are a carbon neutral source, which contributes to their high lipid content. This lipid content can be converted into a renewable fuel for diesel engines such as biodiesel. In order to enhance lipid production, stressing algal cells can occur by nutrient depletion, specifically nitrate, and oil addition, such as dodecane. As algae sense a depletion of their environmental resources, their lipids begin to increase as a fuel reserve. This project focused on Dunaliella tertiolecta and Pavlova lutheri algal strains, and two treatments were tested on each strain. Treatment 1 focused on dodecane addition. This hydrocarbon was administered in increasing concentrations, and enhanced lipid production by the substitution of extracted lipids with newly synthesized lipids. Treatment 2 focused on nitrate depletion. The media was made devoid of nitrate, and then was added in increasing levels of depletion. 1mL samples were stained with the lipophilic fluorescent dye BODIPY, and run through a flow cytometer to obtain results. Overall, D. tertiolecta Treatment 1 cultures showed an increase of lipids by the average factor 2.52 and the maximum factor 5.25 when compared to control cultures. P. lutheri Treatment 2 cultures displayed an increase in lipid production by the average factor 5.22 and the maximum factor 15, when compared to the control cultures. In conclusion, the results suggest that stressing cells by nitrate limitation and enhancing lipid production system productivity by dodecane addition produce higher lipid levels. This project is a successful foundation for further stress-induced lipid enhancement investigations.

Broader Impacts:

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Related Links:
Visualizing "green oil" in live algal cells - BODIPY

1 - 5733 Curtis Clark Dr Apt 1523, Corpus Christi, TX, 78412, USA
2 - Bigelow Laboratory for Ocean Sciences , National Center for Marine Algae and Microbiota (NCMA) , 60 Bigelow Drive , P.O. Box 380, East Boothbay, ME, 04544, USA
3 - Bigelow Laboratory for Ocean Sciences, Marine Microbial Ecology, 60 Bigelow Drive, P.O. Box 380, East Boothbay, ME, 04544, USA

Renewable Energy.

Presentation Type: Poster:Posters for Sections
Session: P
Location: Grand Salon A - D/Riverside Hilton
Date: Monday, July 29th, 2013
Time: 5:30 PM
Number: PPC002
Abstract ID:456
Candidate for Awards:None

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