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Algae Strain Selection- An Intensive Exercise!

August 29th, 2010 | No Comments | Posted in Algae-Strains

It’s not easy to select the right algae strain  say many scientists and its absolutely true.. It is not just isolating a algae from a natural environment and culturing it and transferring  them into a open-ponds, PBR’s, fermenter or whatever. It is a lot more…

According to the DOE, there are three parameters required to be considered for selecting the best oil-yielding strain – The first being algae- physiology- you got to check if the algae can withstand high salinity, fluctuating pH and temperatures, oxygen and carbon-dioxide levels.

Secondly, screening for metabolic production is needed. This basically involves finding out more about the cellular composition of protein, lipids, CHO as well as measuring the productivity of the organism regarding metabolites useful for biofuel generation. For instance, if one needs to screen for oil-production, the distinction between the neural lipids and polar lipids must be studied. Also, many strains secrete metabolites to the medium on which they grow. Hence, this could also help in knowing more about the valuable co-products that can be obtained from the particular strain.

Thirdly, it is the robustness of the strain. The strain must have a culture consistency, resilience (property to absorb energy), susceptibility to predators present in a given environment.

Hence, there is a requirement of high- throughput technologies which can help in screening multiple phenotypes such as growth rate, metabolic productivity, more information of already sequenced information, dedicated databases describing the features of the isolated algae species. This would help a great deal in identifying  the  right algae species a bit more easier than the way it is done right now.

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