Changes in metabolism, growth and nutrient uptake of Ulva fasciata (Chlorophyta) in response to nitrogen source

Ben Shahar, Muki Shpigel, Roy Barkan, Matan Masasa, Amir Neori, Helena Chernov, Eitan Salomon, Moshe Kiflawi, Lior Guttman

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

The form of inorganic nitrogen (N) determines the biofiltration performance of Ulva, particularly by inhibition of nitrate assimilation in the presence of ammonia. In the current study, Ulva fasciata from a biofilter of fishpond effluent was examined for its biomass production, photosynthetic activity, nutrient uptake and activity of nitrate reductase when supplied with either ammonia or nitrate as the sole nitrogen source. The effects of prior acclimation to either nitrogen source were also studied. Cultivation of Ulva with ammonia resulted in a rapid uptake of this nutrient, whereas photosynthesis, uptake of orthophosphate and C:N ratio were greater in cultures with nitrate. The transfer of Ulva from ammonia to nitrate nutrition increased carbohydrate content in the biomass. Longer culture in nitrate did not influence photosynthetic yields, growth, or N and P uptake rate by the algae, but increased both lipid and P content in biomass. Once transferred from ammonia-rich to nitrate-rich seawater, nitrate uptake by Ulva commenced immediately, although the activity of the enzyme nitrate reductase was first detected only 28 h later. Culture of Ulva in different nitrogen forms, ammonia and nitrate, may determine application of the resulting biomass in different industries, e.g., feeding, bioethanol, biofiltration, etc., considering the rapid production of protein-rich Ulva in the presence of ammonia, while yield is lower in the presence of nitrate but the biomass contains more carbohydrates and removes P from the effluent more rapidly.

Original languageEnglish
Article number101781
JournalAlgal Research
Volume46
DOIs
StatePublished - Mar 2020

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
The research was supported by the United States - Israel Binational Agricultural Research and Development Fund (BARD) grants No. IS 4995 17R and US 459913 R . The authors thank all the staff at the National Center for Mariculture and in particular A. Zalmanson, D. Ben-Ezra and M. Fedyuk for their invaluable technical assistance. Much appreciation is given to Prof. Maoz Fine's lab team, G. Banc-Prandi, J. Bellworthy and G. Eviatar from the Eilat Interuniversity Institute for Marine Sciences for their support in PAM measurements. The authors also thank Dr. A. Colorni and Mikhal Ben-Shaprut for making useful suggestions to the MS. The authors have no conflicts of interests, financial or otherwise, to declare. No conflicts, informed consent, human or animal rights are applicable.

Funding Information:
The research was supported by the United States - Israel Binational Agricultural Research and Development Fund (BARD) grants No. IS 4995 17R and US 459913 R. The authors thank all the staff at the National Center for Mariculture and in particular A. Zalmanson, D. Ben-Ezra and M. Fedyuk for their invaluable technical assistance. Much appreciation is given to Prof. Maoz Fine's lab team, G. Banc-Prandi, J. Bellworthy and G. Eviatar from the Eilat Interuniversity Institute for Marine Sciences for their support in PAM measurements. The authors also thank Dr. A. Colorni and Mikhal Ben-Shaprut for making useful suggestions to the MS. The authors have no conflicts of interests, financial or otherwise, to declare. No conflicts, informed consent, human or animal rights are applicable. All authors materially participated in the research and in the manuscript preparation. LG is the corresponding author, research leader and coordinator. BS performed experiments, conducted fieldwork and analyzed data. MS contributed to research design and data analyses. RB, MM and HC contributed to fieldwork. AN, ES and MK contributed to data analyses and writing.

Publisher Copyright:
© 2019 Elsevier B.V.

Keywords

  • Aquaculture
  • Biofiltration
  • Metabolism
  • Nitrogen
  • Phosphorus
  • Ulva fasciata

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Agronomy and Crop Science

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