Significantly high eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA) and fucoxanthin contents with high production rate were achieved in semi continuous culture of marine diatom. Effects of dilution rate on the production of biomass and high value biocompounds such as EPA and fucoxanthin were evaluated in semi-continuous cultures of Chaetoceros gracilis under high light condition. Cellular dry weight increased at lower dilution rate and higher light intensity conditions, and cell size strongly affected EPA and fucoxanthin contents. The smaller microalgae cells showed significantly higher (p < 0.05) value of 17.1 mg g-dw-1 fucoxanthin and 41.5% EPA content per total fatty acid compared to those observed in the larger cells. Chaetoceros gracilis can accumulate relatively higher EPA and fucoxanthin than those reported previously. In addition, maintenance of small cell size by supplying sufficient nutrients and light energy can be the key for the increase production of valuable biocompounds in C. gracilis.
We isolated fifty-two strains from the marine aquaculture ponds in Malaysia that were evaluated for their lipid production and ammonium tolerance and four isolates were selected as new ammonium tolerant microalgae with high-lipid production: TRG10-p102 Oocystis heteromucosa (Chlorophyceae); TRG10-p103 and TRG10-p105 Thalassiosira weissflogii (Bacillariophyceae); and TRG10-p201 Amphora coffeiformis (Bacillariophyceae). Eicosapentenoic acid (EPA) in three diatom strain was between 2.6 and 18.6 % of total fatty acids, which were higher than in O. heteromucosa. Only A. coffeiformi possessed arachidonic acid. Oocystis heteromucosa naturally grew at high ammonium concentrations (1.4-10 mM), whereas the growth of the other strains, T. weissflogii and A. coffeiformi, were visibly inhibited at high ammonium concentrations (>1.4 mM-NH4). However, two strains of T. weissflogii were able to grow at up to 10 mM-NH4 by gradually acclimating to higher ammonium concentrations. The ammonium tolerant strains, especially T. weissflogii which have high EPA contents, were identified as a valuable candidate for biomass production utilizing NH4-N media, such as ammonium-rich wastewater.