Astaxanthin production from Schizochytrium sp and its stabilisation through encapsulation

Author: Ratnakinnera Kode

  • Thesis download: available for open access on 12 Oct 2024.

Kode, Ratnakinnera, 2023 Astaxanthin production from Schizochytrium sp and its stabilisation through encapsulation, Flinders University, College of Medicine and Public Health

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Astaxanthin is a red coloured carotenoid that occurs naturally. It is widely used as a nutraceutical because it has several health benefits including antioxidant activity, anti-inflammatory effects, improved eye health, enhanced skin health, and better cardiovascular health. The green algae Haematoccus pluvalis is the commercially viable natural source, however, it accounts for only 1% of total astaxanthin production. Recently, the marine protist Schizochytrium sp. has been documented as a source of polyunsaturated, squalene and carotenoid production. In this study, a newly isolated Schizochytrium strain (DT3) was used for astaxanthin production. Schizochytrium strain was treated with different ethanol, and methanol concentrations to investigate the effects on astaxanthin accumulation. Using an ultrasonication process, astaxanthin was extracted from a freeze dried Schizochytrium biomass. It was observed that 3% ethanol concentration promoted astaxanthin accumulation in 168 h. Further, biological activity analysis displayed that extracted astaxanthin exhibited the highest radical scavenging activity (ABTS) when compared to Trolox as a positive control. Astaxanthin obtained through Schizochytrium fermentation was encapsulated with high pressure homogeniser technique employing various polymers/wall materials. The egg albumin, gum arabica and sodium alginate combination showed 68% entrapment efficiency of astaxanthin enriched biomass. The study showed that the encapsulation efficiency of astaxanthin improved as the concentrations of enriched biomass or astaxanthin oil increased. The results showed that the highest encapsulation efficiency (74%) was observed when combination of pea protein, sodium alginate and gum arabica investigated as wall materials. The study demonstrated an increased encapsulation efficiency of astaxanthin, making the process suitable for food and pharmaceutical applications.

Keywords: Astaxanthin, encapsulation, Schizochytrium, polymers, Haematoccus pluvalis

Subject: Biotechnology thesis

Thesis type: Masters
Completed: 2023
School: College of Medicine and Public Health
Supervisor: Dr. Munish Puri