Microalgae emerge as the most promising protein sources for aquaculture industry. However, the commercial proteins production at low cost remains a challenge. The process of harnessing microalgal proteins involves several steps such as cell disruption, isolation and extraction. The discrete processes are generally complicated, time-consuming and costly. To date, the notion of integrating microalgal cell disruption and proteins recovery process into one step is yet to explore. Hence, this study aimed to investigate the feasibility of applying methanol/potassium ATPS in the integrated process for proteins recovery from Chlorella sorokiniana. Parameters such as salt types, salt concentrations, methanol concentrations, NaCl addition were optimized. The possibility of upscaling and the effectiveness of recycling the phase components were also studied. The results showed that ATPS formed by 30% (w/w) K3PO4 and 20% (w/w) methanol with 3% (w/w) NaCl addition was optimum for proteins recovery. In this system, the partition coefficient and yield were 7.28 and 84.23%, respectively. There were no significant differences in the partition coefficient and yield when the integrated process was upscaled to 100-fold. The recovered phase components can still be recycled effectively at fifth cycle. In conclusions, this method is simple, rapid, environmental friendly and could be implemented at large scale.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Environmental Engineering