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J Sci Food Agric. 2017 Feb;97(3):724-732. doi: 10.1002/jsfa.7987. Epub 2016 Sep 12.

Potential application of microalga Spirulina platensis as a protein source.

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Graduate Program in Food Technology, Federal Technological University of Paraná (UTFPR), Medianeira, Paraná, Brazil.
Graduate Program in Food Science and Technology, University of Passo Fundo (UPF), Passo Fundo, Rio Grande do Sul, Brazil.


The high protein level of various microalgal species is one of the main reasons to consider them an unconventional source of this compound. Spirulina platensis stands out for being one of the richest protein sources of microbial origin (460-630 g kg-1 , dry matter basis), having similar protein levels when compared to meat and soybeans. The use of S. platensis in food can bring benefits to human health owing to its chemical composition, since it has high levels of vitamins, minerals, phenolics, essential fatty acids, amino acids and pigments. Furthermore, the development of new protein sources to supply the shortage of this nutrient is an urgent need, and protein from S. platensis plays an important role in this scenario. In this sense, extraction processes that allow maximum protein yield and total utilization of biomass is an urgent need, and ultrasonic waves have proven to be an effective extraction technique. The number of scientific papers related to protein fraction from S. platensis is still limited; thus further studies on its functional and technological properties are needed.


integrated biorefineries; microalgae potential; protein extraction; protein failure; single cell protein

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