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The effect of seaweed extracts, as a supplement or alternative culture medium, on the growth rate and biochemical composition of the microalga, Isochrysis galbana (Park 1949)


Correspondence: Kiuomars Rohani-Ghadikolaei, Fish Nutrition Laboratory, School of Biological Sciences, Universiti Sains Malaysia, Penang 11800, Malaysia. E-mail:


Aqueous extracts of green [Ulva lactuca Linnaeus and Enteromorpha intestinalis (Linnaeus) Nees] and red [Gracilaria corticata (J. Agardh) J. Agardh] seaweeds from the Persian Gulf of Iran were examined for their potential usefulness as components of microalga Isochrysis galbana culture medium against conventional f/2 medium. Isochrysis galbana was successfully cultured using the tested seaweed extracts (SWE) and exhibited higher or similar cell density and biomass when SWE were used as a supplement or an alternative medium respectively. When the SWE were used as an alternative medium, microalgal protein, lipid and ash content were similar but carbohydrate increased compared with control. Total saturated fatty acids decreased with a corresponding increase in total mono- and polyunsaturated fatty acids following supplementation of f/2 medium with SWE. Eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA) was not affected by SWE treatments but docosahexaenoic acid (DHA) tended to decrease, except for I. galbana cultured with U. lactuca extract. With the exception of potassium, SWE did not significantly impact the mineral content of cultured I. galbana. The study points to the potential usefulness of specific SWE in the production of microalgae as a food source in aquaculture.

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