Organic solvent-free lipid extraction from wet Aurantiochytrium sp. biomass for co-production of biodiesel and value-added products

Soojung Park, Kyochan Kim, Sang Il Han, Eun Jung Kim, Yoon E. Choi

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

14 Citations (Scopus)


Increasing demand for renewable energy has led to the production of biodiesel from microalgae. Microalgae have been regarded as one of the best feedstocks for biodiesel due to their high growth rate and lipid content as compared to other crops and plants. However, use of microalgae is still hindered by technical barriers and high processing costs. The economic viability and environmentally friendly aspects of biodiesel production will be significantly improved by co-producing value-added chemicals and extracting lipids directly from wet biomass without involvement of organic solvents, respectively. In this study, organic solvent-free lipid extraction from wet Aurantiochytrium sp. biomass was developed to co-produce biodiesel and value-added products such as docosahexaenoic acid. Organic solvent-free lipid extraction was performed by applying alkali and heat treatments to wet biomass. Key parameters for the extraction from Aurantiochytrium sp. were optimized to increase extraction yields. A ratio of 15 mg/mL of biomass to alkaline solution and an alkaline solution concentration of 1% w/w were determined to be the optimal conditions. Both heating temperature and treatment time were associated with positive effects on lipid recovery, up to a certain level. The maximum extraction yield (77.37% of total lipid) was obtained by heating at 150 °C for 30 min. Additionally, microwaves were employed to the extraction system and could further reduce the reaction time. Our study could be expanded to other types of microalgal biomass and will aid in establishing a protocol for organic solvent-free lipid extraction directly from wet biomass.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)101-108
Number of pages8
JournalApplied Biological Chemistry
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 2017 Apr 1

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2017, The Korean Society for Applied Biological Chemistry.


  • Biodiesel
  • Microalgae
  • Microwave
  • Organic solvent-free extraction

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Biochemistry,Genetics and Molecular Biology
  • Organic Chemistry


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