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Algae and cyanobacteria frequently require separation from liquid media in both water treatment and algae culturing for biotechnology applications. The effectiveness of cell separation using a novel dissolved air flotation process that incorporates positively charged bubbles (PosiDAF) has recently been of interest but has been shown to be dependent on the algae or cyanobacteria species tested. Previously, it was hypothesised that algal organic matter (AOM) could be impacting the separation efficiency. Hence, this study investigates the influence of AOM on cell separation using PosiDAF, in which bubbles are modified using a commercially available cationic polyelectrolyte poly(N, N-diallyl-N,N-dimethylammonium chloride) (PDADMAC). The separation of Chlorella vulgaris CS-42/7, Mychonastes homosphaera CS-556/01 and two strains of Microcystis aeruginosa (CS-564/01 and CS-555/1), all of which have similar cell morphology but different AOM character, was investigated. By testing the cell separation in the presence and absence of AOM, it was determined that AOM enhanced cell separation for all the strains but to different extents depending on the quantity and composition of carbohydrates and proteins in the AOM. By extracting AOM from the strain for which optimal separation was observed and adding it to the others, cell separation improved from <55% to >90%. This was attributed to elevated levels of acidic carbohydrates as well as glycoprotein-carbohydrate conjugations, which in turn were related to the nature and quantity of proteins and carbohydrates present in the AOM. Therefore, it was concluded that process optimisation requires an in-depth understanding of the AOM and its components. If culturing algae for biotechnology applications, this indicates that strain selection is not only important with respect to high value product content, but also for cell separation.
This article was published in the following journal.
Name: Water research
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An algal bloom where the algae produce powerful toxins that can kill fish, birds, and mammals, and ultimately cause illness in humans. The harmful bloom can also cause oxygen depletion in the water due to the death and decomposition of non-toxic algae species.
Algae of the division Rhodophyta, in which the red pigment (PHYCOERYTHRIN) predominates. However if this pigment is destroyed, the algae can appear purple, brown, green, or yellow. Two important substances found in the cell walls of red algae are AGAR and CARRAGEENAN. Red algae are thought to be closely related to the prokaryotic CYANOBACTERIA.
A phylum of oxygenic photosynthetic bacteria comprised of unicellular to multicellular bacteria possessing CHLOROPHYLL a and carrying out oxygenic PHOTOSYNTHESIS. Cyanobacteria are the only known organisms capable of fixing both CARBON DIOXIDE (in the presence of light) and NITROGEN. Cell morphology can include nitrogen-fixing heterocysts and/or resting cells called akinetes. Formerly called blue-green algae, cyanobacteria were traditionally treated as ALGAE.
Deoxyribonucleic acid that makes up the genetic material of ALGAE.
A non-taxonomic term for unicellular microscopic algae which are found in both freshwater and marine environments. Some authors consider DIATOMS; CYANOBACTERIA; HAPTOPHYTA; and DINOFLAGELLATES as part of microalgae, even though they are not algae.
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Biotechnology - Biotech
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