Determination of optimal conditions for the large-scale production of astaxanthin in algae

Astaxanthin is a high-value natural product that is produced by a number of strains of algae. Astaxanthin and related carotenoids such as leutein and zeaxanthin, all derived from beta-carotene, have been demonstrated to have positive health benefits when taken as a dietary supplement. The Myera Group, a Manitoba biotechnology start-up company, has as a primary goal the production of astaxanthin for the commercial market. The Myera group has succeeded in producing astaxanthin in pilot-scale cultures (~ 90 L), however the consistent production of a high yield of astaxanthin at the production scale (~ 9000 L) remains a challenge. This project will examine in detail the effect of a variety of culture conditions, such as, dissolved gasses, lighting conditions and trace hormones, on the production of astaxanthin with the goal of maximizing yield in the large-scale cultures. TO BE CONT'D

Intern: 
Mona Abdel-Hameed
Faculty Supervisor: 
John Sorensen
Province: 
Manitoba
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