Using an Unconventional Source to Screen the Oleaginous Capacities of Two Indigenous Aspergillus Species, Aspergillus Ochraceus and Aspergillus Amstelodami, for Third Generation Biodiesel Production
Harshitha Madhusoodan Jathanna†*, Chandrayan Vaman Rao†, Mohan Poojari‡
† Visvesvaraya Technological University, Faculty, Department of Biotechnology Engineering, NMAM Institute of Technology, Nitte, Karkala, 574110, India
‡ Faculty, Department of Mechanical Engineering, NMAM Institute of Technology, Nitte, Karkala, 574110, India
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In light of the ongoing rise in global fuel prices, alternative and renewable forms of fuels have been sought and will be relied on in the future. Biodiesel is one such efficient renewable fuel that also has environmental benefits. Microorganisms that produce and store oil have lately been used to reduce raw material costs for biodiesel production. As an effort towards reducing the expenses of commercial microbial oil production, biodiesel –derived residues were used as raw materials to synthesize microbial oil using two native fungi, A. ochraceus and A. amstelodami. When both fungi were grown in media containing a combination of dilute sulfuric acid pretreated mixture of Pongamia seed cake and pure glycerol, a medium containing 80 g/L pure glycerol promoted maximum biomass and lipid production in both fungi. However, A. ochraceus produced significantly higher biomass and lipids than A. amstelodami, with highest biomass, lipid, and lipid content reaching 42 ± 2.96 g/L, 10.6 ± 0.47 g/L, and 25.24 ± 1.93 %, for A. ochraceus in medium with glycerol at 80 g/L, respectively. Sustained growth as well as lipid synthesis in the unconventional medium under study proves the efficacy of the feedstock as well as the fungi employed in synthesizing lipids for biodiesel applications.