Stuthmann, Lara, Achuthan, Revathi, Pribbernow, Mia, Du, Hoang Trung, Springer, Karin and Kunzmann, Andreas ORCID: (2022) Improving the nutritional value of edible Caulerpa lentillifera (Chlorophyta) using high light intensities. A realistic tool for sea grape farmers. Algal Research, 66 . p. 102785. DOI

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Edible sea grapes (Caulerpa lentillifera) are produced in shaded ponds (~ 50 μmol photons m−2 s−1) and are of increasing demand for direct human consumption. The controlled exposure to light-stress after harvest could increase algae's content of nutritionally valuable antioxidants, including phenols. In order to define a light-stress tool for farmers to use, we investigated the effect of five irradiances (50–600 μmol photons m−2 s−1) for an exposure time of up to 14 days. Antioxidant activity (AOA, initial of 150.93 ± 25.50 mmol Trolox equivalents 100 g−1 DW) and total phenolic content (TPC, initial of 124.45 ± 10.07 mg Gallic acid equivalents 100 g−1 DW) significantly increased to values of up to 228.8 ± 12.4 and 222.2 ± 22.7 % of initial, respectively. However, targeted increases in antioxidant parameters correlated with decreased values of Fv/Fm (p < 0.001) and the chlorophyll (Chl) a content in the edible frond was significantly lower at irradiances ≥400 μmol photons m−2 s−1 compared to the control (50 μmol photons m−2 s−1), causing bleaching. As the physiological response of the alga (Fv/Fm, AOA, TPC, Chl a) depended on exposure time and irradiance treatment, both parameters could be adjusted to define treatments according to the consumer's needs. Light irradiances measured at a sea grape farm revealed that farmers could integrate such treatments labour- and cost-effectively by removing layers of plastic-meshes off their culture or post-harvest units. The pattern of Chl a loss and red (R) colour channel values in sea grapes thallus parts implied, that a combination of degradation and chloroplast migration was responsible for bleaching at light-stress. Additionally, R channel values extracted from pictures could be used for Chl a estimation, due to strong correlation (rS = −0.786, p < 0.001). In conclusion farmers can use high light as post-harvest treatment in order to increase valuable antioxidants.

Document Type: Article
Programme Area: PA1
Research affiliation: Ecology > Experimental Aquaculture
Affiliations > Not ZMT
Refereed: Yes
Open Access Journal?: No
DOI etc.:
ISSN: 22119264
Date Deposited: 25 Jul 2022 13:47
Last Modified: 25 Jul 2022 13:47

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