Isolation of Marine Protists for Production of Polyunsaturated Fatty Acids
Berryman, Kevin Thomas
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The aim of this research was to isolate and characterize novel strains of marine protists with potential to commercially produce PUFAs. Twelve trips were made visiting 10 different locations in the Canadian Maritime Provinces. Sixty-nine strains were isolated and screened for biomass and fatty acid production. Those meeting specific criteria were selected for further investigation including characterization by 18S rDNA sequencing. Isolate ONC-KTB-56 produced the greatest amount of biomass (1 807 mg L-1) and fatty acids (24.6% dry weight). Of the total fatty acids, ARA, EPA and DHA comprised 0.89, 1.22 and 4.7 percent, respectively. Isolate ONC-KTB-14 produced 1 704 mg L-1 dry biomass with 5.4 percent fatty acids including 1.44, 1.35 and 37.5 percent, ARA, EPA and DHA, respectively. Through optimization of culture conditions biomass, fatty acid content and the proportions of specific fatty acids can be increased. With such optimization, there is potential for isolates ONC-KTB-14 and ONC-KTB-56 to be grown at a commercial scale for production of PUFAs.