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A possible source of Vitamin D - microalgae - July 2024

Recent advances in microalgae-based vitamin D metabolome: Biosynthesis, and production

Bioresource Technology online 7 July 2024, https://doi.org/10.1016/j.biortech.2024.131078 PDF behind paywall
Wessal Ouedrhiri a, Imane Bennis b, Hicham El Arroussi a

•Microalgae exhibit rapid growth, CO2 capture, and high Vitamin D content.
•Vitamin D is synthesized via many pathways involving sterol precursors
•Genetic engineering and environmental optimization enhance Vitamin D production in microalage.
•The Vitamin D market is expanding, with significant interest in algae-based sources.
•Patent trends indicate increased protection of microalgae-derived Vitamin D technologies.

Vitamin D (VD) production-based microalgae biosynthesis presents various benefits including sustainability, fast expansion, and the capacity to generate substantial quantities. However, this approach suffers from serious challenges that require effective cultivation methods and extraction processes. Indeed, further researches are of significant interest to understand the biosynthesis pathways, enhance the processes, and ensure its viability.

In this context, the present review focuses on an in-depth understanding of the chemistry of VD and its analogues and provides a comprehensive explanation of the biosynthesis pathways, precursors, and production methods. In addition, this work discusses the state of the art reflecting the recent advances researches and the global market of microalgae as a potential source of VD. In sum, this paper demonstrates that microalgae can efficiently biosynthesize various forms of VD, presenting a sustainable alternative for VD production.

Microalgae hold immense promise as a valuable feedstock for various applications, they present diverse group of photosynthetic microorganisms with a great potential to capture CO2 and produce high-value bioproducts (Basheer et al., 2020, Mao et al., 2024). This includes biosynthetic production of mosaic of lipids, polysaccharides, proteins, phenols, and vitamins under controllable conditions (Hu et al., 2023, Orejuela-Escobar et al., 2021). Particularly, these microorganisms become a promising source for producing multiple form of VD with significant sustainability, eco-friendly and low cost (Ljubic et al., 2020, Wang et al., 2024). For instance, D. salina provide a pathway synthesis of VD with high concentrations (38,000 IU per gram of dried weight), which surpasses conventional sources (Ljubic et al., 2021).

On the other hand, VD has a pivotal role in the calcium and phosphate homeostasis to support bone formation as well as decreases diabetics' susceptibility to cardiovascular diseases, and interacts in the inflammatory process and inhibits cytokine storms (Combs and Mcclung, 2022, Umar et al., 2022, Veldurthy et al., 2016, Viljakainen et al., 2011). Moreover, recent research found a robust link between greater circulating plasma levels of 1, 25 dihydroxyD3, and the lowered risk of SARS-CoV-2 infection (Chiodini et al., 2021). This form of VD appears often in blood after sunlight exposition that occur on the pre-vitamin D called 7-Dehydrocholesterol (7-DHC), and many other hydroxylation reactions that produce VD2 and VD3 (Göring, 2018).

The transformation between these various types of VD, including its precursors occurs under different biosynthesis mechanisms from mevalonate pathway to sterols (Johnson et al., 2021). Such pathways can be conducted naturally or by induction using genetic engineering and manipulation of environmental parameters such as light intensity and duration (Ljubic et al., 2020). However, a full understanding of further details of this pathway requires insight research and development leading to advanced strategies allowing the enhancement of VD production and transformation using microalgae. Hence, the aim of this review is to put in view the VD chemistry, production pathways and process from microalgae using different approaches and strategies with critical discussion on their limitations trying to empower their efficiency...

Section snippets
Vitamin D chemical structure and analogues
To well understand the chemistry of VD, it is necessary to clarify the ambiguity existing between its different analogues. VD is considered a secosteroid structure, characterized by the breaking of the covalent carbon–carbon bond (C9-C10) in the B ring of the steroid molecule as first step of overall synthesis (Ohyama and Shinki, 2021). This ring opening can occur due to the energy provided by photons, specifically with a thermal energy of 18 mJ/cm2 and within the UVB wavelength range of...

Chemistry of sterols
Sterol’s common structure is a cyclopentanoperhydrophenanthrene, known as a sterane ring that presents the basic part of VD molecule. Sterols containing between 26 and 31 carbon atoms within structural modifications such as 4,4-dimethyl substituents, 4-methyl substituent, or no methyl group at C-4, can be produced through biosynthesis route in microalgae (so-called 4-desmethylsterols that include the majority of sterols in microalgae) (Randhir et al., 2020). Different configurations, such as...

Methods of vitamin D biosynthesis improvement in microalgae
VD synthesis in microalgae is regulated by several factors, including the intensity and duration of UVB radiation, the temperature and salinity of the water, and the presence of certain enzymes and proteins. Some microalgae species are more efficient at synthesizing VD than others, hence, many researchers are focussing on ways to optimize its production in these organisms (Araújo et al., 2022, Randhir et al., 2020). The VD yields in response to different stress routes were given in Table 2, in...

Bibliometric analysis
Examining a collection of articles that address the same topic via the use of keywords is an excellent method to determine the direction of a field and identify areas that need additional investigation. The present study demonstrates the use of bibliometric analysis by investigating the co-occurrence of full recorded references for research papers in the last five years in the Web of Science database related to the topic of “microalgae” and their potential for “vitamin D”, since the analysis of ...

Research needs and future direction
Understanding Microalgae VD biosynthesis and production processes is crucial due to the growing recognition of its various forms found within these organisms. Their cultivation low cost makes them potential bio-factories for sustainable and efficient VD production. Therefore, the first stage in investigating this aspect involves screening a wide range of microalgae species and exploring various environmental factors such as light intensity, temperature, nutrient availability, and pH levels to...

Recent developments in VD generation from microalgae underscore their potential as a sustainable and efficient source. Despite their rapid growth and high yield, challenges remain in optimizing cultivation and extraction techniques. This review examines the chemistry, biosynthesis pathways, and production methods of VD, stressing the necessity for further research to improve process efficiency and yield. Recent studies and market trends demonstrate the potential of microalgae to meet global VD...

References (82) online

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A possible source of Vitamin D - microalgae - July 2024        
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