Submitted to: World Journal of Microbiology and Biotechnology
Publication Type: Peer reviewed journal
Publication Acceptance Date: 11/15/1995
Publication Date: N/A
Citation: Interpretive Summary: Arachidonic acid (ARA) is a liquid unsaturated fatty acid occurring in most animal fats and considered essential in animal nutrition. In recent years, ARA has potentially wide application in a number of fields, including pharmaceuticals, cosmetics and agriculture. The main sources of ARA are cow and pig liver, adrenal glands and sardines. However, the ARA content of these sources is low. Consequently, it is the aim of this work to investigate ARA production in strains of Mortierella fungi, an appealing source of ARA. An aspirin medium was developed as a selective inhibitor of growth of ARA-producing strains for preliminary selection of ARA producers. The results suggest that ARA synthesis is a characteristic feature of some species and is useful in taxonomy studies. In addition, 3 of 87 strains evaluated produced more than 40% ARA in the lipids recovered. These superior ARA-producing strains may prove useful for industrial production of ARA.
Technical Abstract: A growth inhibiting aspirin medium was developed to select arachidonic acid (ARA) producing Mortierella species and to determine the fatty acid content of 87 Mortierella strains. ARA was detected in 66 strains from 33 species and may prove useful for systematic studies of Mortierella. The ARA content of the Mortierella strains tested ranged from 4 to 55% of total lipids. Most ARA-producing strains of Mortierella (59 strains) grown on potato glucose agar synthesized less than 20% ARA. Four strains produced between 20 and 25% ARA and three strains produced more than 40% ARA. An inverse relationship was observed between ARA and oleic acid content.