First report on production of Mannosylerythritol Lipids, a biosurfactant, from microalgae oils | iBB |

Biosurfactants, particularly mannosylerythritol lipids (MELs), have excellent biochemical properties and a wide range of potential applications. However, for use at an industrial level, it is necessary to develop more sustainable production processes, both in terms of the environment and economy. In this regard, the study “Production of mannosylerythritol lipids using oils from oleaginous microalgae: two sequential microorganism culture approach” led by iBB team, with Tiago Coelho, Miguel Nascimento, Nuno Faria, Frederico Fereira, together with LNEG team, Alberto Reis and Luísa Gouveia, was just published in Microorganisms journal. It reports, for the first time, the production of MELs using oils produced from microalgae. The bio-oil was extracted from Neochloris oleoabundans and evaluated for its use as a sole carbon source or as a co-substrate strategy, using D-glucose as an additional carbon source, on Moesziomyces spp. cultures to support cell growth and induce the production of MELs. Both M. antarcticus and M. aphidis were able to grow and produce MELs using algae-derived bio-oils as carbon sources and, interestingly, there were no significant differences in productivity when oils from microalgae or vegetable oils were used as carbon sources. These results provide new perspectives for the production of MELs in systems that combine different microorganisms.