Institute of Crystallography - CNR

Chlamydomonas reinhardtii: A Factory of Nutraceutical and Food Supplements for Human Health

Chlamydomonas reinhardtii (C. reinhardtii) is one of the most well-studied microalgae organisms that revealed important information for the photosynthetic and metabolic processes of plants and eukaryotes. Numerous extensive studies have also underpinned its great potential as a biochemical factory, capable of producing various highly desired molecules with a direct impact on human health and longevity. Polysaccharides, lipids, functional proteins, pigments, hormones, vaccines, and antibodies are among the valuable biomolecules that are produced spontaneously or under well-defined conditions by C. reinhardtii and can be directly linked to human nutrition and diet. The aim of this review is to highlight the recent advances in the field focusing on the most relevant applications related to the production of important biomolecules for human health that are also linked with human nutrition and diet. The limitations and challenges are critically discussed along with the potential future applications of C. reinhardtii biomass and processed products in the field of nutraceuticals and food supplements. The increasing need for high-value and low-cost biomolecules produced in an environmentally and economy sustainable manner also underline the important role of C. reinhardtii.

Molecules (Basel, Online)
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Annalisa Masi 1 , Francesca Leonelli 2 , Viviana Scognamiglio 1, Giulia Gasperuzzo 1 , Amina Antonacci 1, Michael A. Terzidis 3