Continuous microalgal culture module and method of culturing microalgae containing macular pigment

Bioresour Technol. 2024 Jun:401:130714. doi: 10.1016/j.biortech.2024.130714. Epub 2024 Apr 17.


This study established and investigated continuous macular pigment (MP) production with a lutein (L):zeaxanthin (Z) ratio of 4-5:1 by an MP-rich Chlorella sp. CN6 mutant strain in a continuous microalgal culture module. Chlorella sp. CN6 was cultured in a four-stage module for 10 days. The microalgal culture volume increased to 200 L in the first stage (6 days). Biomass productivity increased to 0.931 g/L/day with continuous indoor white light irradiation during the second stage (3 days). MP content effectively increased to 8.29 mg/g upon continuous, indoor white light and blue light-emitting diode irradiation in the third stage (1 day), and the microalgal biomass and MP concentrations were 8.88 g/L and 73.6 mg/L in the fourth stage, respectively. Using a two-step MP extraction process, 80 % of the MP was recovered with a high purity of 93 %, and its L:Z ratio was 4-5:1.

Keywords: Chlorella; Continuous microalgae culture module; Lutein; Macular pigment; Zeaxanthin.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Biomass*
  • Cell Culture Techniques / methods
  • Chlorella* / growth & development
  • Chlorella* / metabolism
  • Light
  • Lutein / metabolism
  • Macular Pigment* / metabolism
  • Microalgae* / metabolism
  • Xanthophylls / metabolism
  • Zeaxanthins / metabolism


  • Macular Pigment
  • Lutein
  • Zeaxanthins
  • Xanthophylls