Dunaliella viridis TAV01: A Halotolerant, Protein-Rich Microalga from the Algarve Coast
Gabriel Bombo, Nathana L. Cristofoli, Tamára F. Santos, Lisa Schüler, Inês B. Maia, Hugo Pereira, Luísa Barreira and João Varela
Tolerance to harsh environmental conditions, high growth rates and an amino acid profile adequate for human consumption are beneficial features observed in Dunaliella viridis TAV01, a novel strain isolated from a salt pond in the Algarve, Portugal. TAV01 was identified down to the species level by maximum likelihood and Bayesian phylogenetic analyses of the ribosomal internal transcribed spacers one and two regions (ITS1 and ITS-2) and was supported by ITS2 secondary structure analysis. The biochemical profile revealed high protein (35.7 g 100g−1 DW; 65% higher than the minimum recommended by the World Health Organization) and lipid contents (21.3 g 100g−1 DW), a relatively higher proportion of the polyunsaturated fatty acids (PUFAs), α-linolenic (26.3% of total fatty acids (TFA)) and linoleic acids (22.8% of TFA), compared to those of other Dunaliella strains, and a balanced essential amino acids profile containing significant levels of leucine, phenylalanine, valine, and threonine. The major carotenoid was lutein, making up over 85% of total carotenoids. The presence of high-quality natural products in D. viridis TAV01 offers the possibility of using this new strain as a valuable biological resource for novel feed or food products as ingredients or supplements.