Three red seaweeds from the Venice Lagoon: Gracilaria gracilis, Gracilaria vermiculophylla, Gracilariopsis longissima and the green seaweed Ulva rigida were investigated to determine the yields and the annual fluctuation of sulfated polysaccharides (SP) for biotechnological applications. The Gracilariaceae and U. rigida were investigated and evaluated taking into account various environmental parameters of the water column and surface sediments. The annual production of SP was the highest for G. longissima (13.2 tons dw ha−1 year−1), followed by G. vermiculophylla (11.4 tons dw ha−1 year−1) and G. gracilis (7.4 tons dw ha−1 year−1), whereas U. rigida showed the lowest production (2.7 tons dw ha−1 year−1). High nutrient availability, turbidity and phytoplankton blooms inhibited the production of SP in the red seaweeds especially in summer. The SP produced by Gracilariaceae in March and April, at water temperatures ranging between 13°C and 17°C, accounted for more than half of the total annual production. In contrast, U. rigida produced the highest quantity of SP (ulvan) in June with temperatures >25°C.
This article belongs to the special issue Phycomorph: macroalgal development and morphogenesis, published in Botanica Marina 2017, vol. 60, issue 2.
About the authors
Andrea Augusto Sfriso, graduated from Ca’ Foscari University of Venice in 2013. He is a PhD student at Ca’ Foscari University of Venice researching biotechnological applications for seaweeds, seaweed ecology and biochemistry. Currently, he is researching algal polysaccharides, fluorophores and wild bacterial strains for biomass conversion to high value compounds. He is laying the groundwork for a scientific expertise in the sustainable use of algal biomasses in transition environments.
Michele Gallo graduated as a chemical-biological laboratory technician in 1989. Since then, he has worked at the Department of Molecular Sciences and Nanosystems, Ca’ Foscari University of Venice as a Technical Laboratory Assistant with expertise in microbiology: characterization of bacteria isolated from extreme environments and archeological sites; study of bacterial metal-resistance and exopolymeric-metal complexes production and characterization; study of bacterial biodegradation of hydrocarbons and paper manuscripts; extraction of polysaccharides from bacterial cultures and production of “green” nanoparticles for catalytic activities, antimicrobial and nutraceutical applications.
Franco Baldi, graduated from Siena University in 1975. In 1998, he joined Ca’ Foscari University as an Associated Professor and has been a full Professor in General Microbiology (BIO-19) at the same university since 2005. He has scientific expertise in Environmental Microbiology with a special interest in microbial interactions with metals in terrestrial and marine ecosystems with relative applications. He has published almost 100 publications, the majority of them in international journals (see also: http://www.unive.it/data/persone/5591470/pubb_anno). Prof. Baldi worked in several laboratories mostly in Europe and the USA.
The authors are grateful to Dr. Orietta Zucchetta and the journal editor for the English editing and to Prof. Adriano Sfriso for his taxonomical expertise and support.
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