Bioactive Ingredients from Microalgae: Food and Feed Applications

Diana PATRAS, Corina V. MORARU, Carmen SOCACIU


Microalgae (green or blue-green ones) are among the most important organisms on the world, with a versatile and adaptive metabolism. They are able to synthesize bioactive molecules (mainly secondary metabolites such as unsaturated fatty acids, pigments, amino acids) with biomedical applications, enhancement of the nutritional value of food, animal feed/aquaculture, as well with impact on the environmental protection ( as raw materials for biofuels). Last decade, by a targeted selection of wild microalgae strains, their cultivation in farms developed in parallel with the bioreactors’products. There are nowadays cultivated at industrial scale especially Dunaliella salina p., Spirulina platensis, Hematococcus pluvialis or Chlorella vulgaris as valuable resources of polyunsaturated lipids and sterols, proteins, polysaccharides, carotenoid pigments, vitamins, minerals with antioxidant, antibacterial or antiviral effects. This review presents a systematic approach on the recent literature data collected the last years, underlying their morphologic and biochemical potential, the advanced technologies to use the bioactive components of different microalgae, new formulations which incorporate, stabilize and store their bioactivity and increase the bioavailability of their components in food and feed. Although their morphologic and biochemical potential is well described, there are presented new data on their bioactive components and formulations using emerging technologies for new application approaches which aims their use as ingredients in added value products for food, cosmetics and feed industry, to be exploited for commercial use. This review updated the last findings in these areas, underlined the reason for the scientific and technological advances, due to their huge potential, not only in environment, energy, but more and more as ingredients for food and feed/ aquaculture products, in the future.


biotechnology; bioactive molecules; food and feed application; microalgae

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