Selective extraction of ω-3 fatty acids from nannochloropsis sp. using supercritical CO2 Extraction

TitleSelective extraction of ω-3 fatty acids from nannochloropsis sp. using supercritical CO2 Extraction
Publication TypeArticolo su Rivista peer-reviewed
Year of Publication2019
AuthorsLeone, Gian Paolo, Balducchi Roberto, Mehariya S., Martino Maria, Larocca Vincenzo, Sanzo G.D., Iovine A., Casella P., Marino T., Karatza D., Chianese S., Musmarra D., and Molino Antonio

In this article, microalgae Nannochloropsis sp. was used for fatty acid (FA) extraction, using a supercritical fluid-carbon dioxide (SF-CO2) extraction method. This study investigated the influence of different pre-treatment conditions by varying the grinding speed (200-600 rpm), pre-treatment time (2.5-10 min), and mixing ratio of diatomaceous earth (DE) and Nannochloropsis sp. biomass (0.5-2.0 DE/biomass) on FAs extraction. In addition, the effect of different operating conditions, such as pressure (100-550 bar), temperature (50-75 °C), and CO2 flow rate (7.24 and 14.48 g/min) on eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA) and docosahexaenoic acid (DHA) recovery, was analyzed. Experimental data evidenced that, keeping constant the extraction conditions, the pre-treatment step enhanced the FAs extraction yield up to 3.4 fold, thereby the maximum extracted amount of FAs (61.19 mg/g) was attained with the pre-treatment with a ratio of DE/biomass of 1 at 600 rpm for 5 min. Moreover, by increasing both SF-CO2 pressure and temperature, the selectivity towards EPA was enhanced, while intermediate pressure and lower pressure promoted DHA recovery. The highest amount of extracted EPA, i.e., 5.69 mg/g, corresponding to 15.59%, was obtained at 75 °C and 550 bar with a CO2 flow rate of 14.48 g/min, while the maximum amount of extracted DHA, i.e., 0.12 mg/g, equal to 79.63%, was registered at 50 °C and 400 bar with a CO2 flow rate of 14.48 g/min. Moreover, the increased CO2 flow rate from 7.24 to 14.48 g/min enhanced both EPA and DHA recovery. © 2019 by the authors. Licensee MDPI, Basel, Switzerland.


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