Optimisation of Biomass Production and Nutritional Value of Two Marine Diatoms (Bacillariophyceae), Skeletonema costatum and Chaetoceros calcitrans


Carolina R. V. Bastos, Inês B. Maia, Hugo Pereira, João Navalho and João C. S. Varela

One of the key constraints that is associated with the production of microalgae biomass and products, is the low yields that are associated with high production costs in microalgae cultivation units. Therefore, the aim of the present work was to improve the biomass productivity of two high-value diatom species, Skeletonema costatum and Chaetoceros calcitrans. To do so, the culture medium that was supplied to the cultures was optimised in a stepwise process, regarding the nutrient’s silicate, nitrate, phosphorus, iron, and micronutrients. For both diatoms, the results that were obtained revealed a significant increase in biomass productivity as well as an improved biochemical profile regarding increased omega-3 fatty acids contents. With this work, the optimise culture media was established for each diatom, thus providing a strategy for lower production costs that were reflected in higher productivities with higher biomass quality. Ultimately this will help improve the application of S. costatum and C. calcitrans in the aquaculture and nutraceutical industries.

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