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Crit Rev Biotechnol. 2002;22(3):245-79.

Botryococcus braunii: a renewable source of hydrocarbons and other chemicals.

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Department of Biotechnology, National Institute of Pharmaceutical Education and Research, Punjab, India.


Botryococcus braunii, a green colonial microalga, is an unusually rich renewable source of hydrocarbons and other chemicals. Hydrocarbons can constitute up to 75% of the dry mass of B. braunii. This review details the various facets of biotechnology of B. braunii, including its microbiology and physiology; production of hydrocarbons and other compounds by the alga; methods of culture; downstream recovery and processing of algal hydrocarbons; and cloning of the algal genes into other microorganisms. B. braunii converts simple inorganic compounds and sunlight to potential hydrocarbon fuels and feedstocks for the chemical industry. Microorganisms such as B. braunii can, in the long run, reduce our dependence on fossil fuels and because of this B. braunii continues to attract much attention.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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