Researching conditions leading to HABs

Researching conditions leading to HABs

When there is a combination of population increase, wastewater discharge, agricultural fertilization, and climate change, the cocktail is detrimental to humans and animals. This harmful cocktail produces harmful algal blooms, and many of these are toxic to humans and wildlife. Wayne Wurtsbaugh, Professor Emeritus…

Protein factor increases yield of biofuel precursor

Protein factor increases yield of biofuel precursor

As an alternative to traditional fossil fuels, biofuels represent a more environmentally friendly and sustainable fuel source. Plant or animal fats can be converted to biofuels through a process called transesterification. In particular, the storage molecule triacylglycerol (TAG), found in microscopic algae…

Exploring land plant evolution

Exploring land plant evolution

How did plants make the evolutionary jump from water to land? Scientists think that green algae are their water-living ancestors, but we are not sure how the transition to land plants happened. However, new research from Michigan State University, and published in the journal eLife, presents evidence…

Algae byproduct CARS shows potential as cattle feed

Algae byproduct CARS shows potential as cattle feed

John Maday writes in Drovers.com that, as algae emerges as a commercial source for omega-3 fatty acids for human and animal foods, the process for extracting those fatty acids — leaving the byproduct condensed algal residue solubles (CARS) — could replace some grain in cattle feedlot rations. With the CARS…

Expediting the economical production of biofuel and metal bioremediation

Expediting the economical production of biofuel and metal bioremediation

Neha Arora, a Post-Doctoral fellow at the Indian Institute of Technology, writes in ScienceTrends.com that, despite microalgae having great potential for biofuels and mitigation of heavy metals, its utilization on a large scale is still a long…

Algae for next-generation solar panels

Algae for next-generation solar panels

David Nield writes in ScienceAlert.com that a long-living, light-emitting microalgae could be about to help us develop the next generation of solar panels. These fluorescent algae are able to capture up to 95% of available light — way better than even our most efficient solar panels.Using advanced…

Scientists develop high-CO2-tolerant microalgae

Scientists develop high-CO2-tolerant microalgae

The rapid elevation of atmospheric carbon dioxide level has led to global warming and ocean acidification. Microalgae, accounting for nearly 40% of global carbon dioxide fixation on Earth, are on the forefront of mankind’s battle against climate change, since many of them are able to directly convert sunlight and…

Increased biofuel production from unicellular algae

Increased biofuel production from unicellular algae

A new study may provide knowledge for increased biofuel production from unicellular algae. When starved for nutrients such as nitrogen, algae accumulate copious amounts of energy-rich lipids, which can be harvested and used as biofuel. Algae-based biofuel has the potential to serve as a sustainable replacement…

Space alga “key to manned Mars mission”

Space alga “key to manned Mars mission”

Tom Fish writes in Express.co.UK that NASA scientists believe algae grown in spacecraft could be key to the success to long-term manned missions, such as planned trips to the Mars. US space agency NASA is moving toward more deep space missions. In particular, a mission to Mars could require at…

Algae the origin for plant’s drought alert system

Algae the origin for plant’s drought alert system

Plants’ water-to-land leap marks one of the most important milestones in the evolution of life on Earth. But how plants managed this transition when faced with unfamiliar challenges such as drought and bright light has been unclear. Now, a new study shows that the built-in alert system that enables land…

PNNL’s DISCOVR project invites collaboration

PNNL’s DISCOVR project invites collaboration

Wanted: Algae industry partners and academic researchers to help find the best algae strains for biofuels and bioproducts to reduce the cost of producing bioenergy from algae feedstocks. The Department of Energy’s Pacific Northwest National Laboratory and its partners in this effort are offering private…

Extremophile algae may take genes from bacteria

Extremophile algae may take genes from bacteria

Algae found in thermal springs and other extreme environments have heated up a long-standing debate: Do eukaryotes — organisms with a cell nucleus — sometimes get an evolutionary boost in the form of genes transferred from bacteria? The genomes of some red algae, single-celled eukaryotes, suggest…

Chlorella’s wastewater cleaning ability confirmed

Chlorella’s wastewater cleaning ability confirmed

Environmental engineers at the University of Arkansas have discovered that Chlorella vulgaris, a single-celled fresh water algae species, effectively removes pollutants from wastewater even at fluctuating levels, making it an effective tool for wastewater treatment. The study, published recently…

Building a seaweed industry in New Zealand

Building a seaweed industry in New Zealand

Fuseworks Media reports that Sea lettuce (green seaweed) may hold the key to a new and valuable industry in New Zealand, thanks to a $13 million algal biotechnology research project funded by the Government and University of Waikato. Leading the research program is seaweed biologist…

Kampachi gets $3.3m for seaweed into food, feed, fuel

Kampachi gets $3.3m for seaweed into food, feed, fuel

Jason Huffman writes in UndercurrentNews.com that the Kampachi Company, a mariculture business focused on expanding the environmentally sound production of sashimi-grade marine fish in ocean-based cages, is planning to make a play in the seaweed space. The Kona…

NREL Study: Florida best growing region

NREL Study: Florida best growing region

A unique experiment that explored how well algae grows in specific regions of the United States yielded data that could prove useful as the industry moves forward, according to research from the U.S. Department of Energy’s (DOE’s) National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) and Arizona State University…

New biocontainment strategy controls spread of escaped GMOs

New biocontainment strategy controls spread of escaped GMOs

Science Daily reports that Hiroshima University (HU) researchers successfully developed a biocontainment strategy for genetically modified organisms. Their new method prevents genetically modified cyanobacteria from surviving outside of their test environment, enabling ways to more safely research…

Scientists find “switch” to increase starch accumulation in algae

Scientists find “switch” to increase starch accumulation in algae

Results from a collaborative study by Tokyo Institute of Technology and Tohoku University, Japan, raise prospects for large-scale production of algae-derived starch, a valuable bioresource for biofuels and other renewable materials. A “switch” controlling the level of starch content in algae has been discovered…

Growing algae with improved carbon dioxide utilization

Growing algae with improved carbon dioxide utilization

Ken Reardon, the Jud and Pat Harper Professor of Chemical and Biological Engineering at Colorado State University, is leading a $2.1 million project that aims to increase algae yield by improving carbon dioxide utilization. The three-year project is part of an effort led by the…

PHYCO2, MSU advance algae production/carbon reduction program

PHYCO2, MSU advance algae production/carbon reduction program

PHYCO2 LLC has announced a new milestone in their three-year pilot program with Michigan State University, with the operation of its new, scalable algae production technology reactor, which will reduce the level of carbon emissions produced…

Sounds from algae helping coral reefs

Sounds from algae helping coral reefs

Phys.org reports that gas bubbles released by marine algae during photosynthesis produce sound whose intensity correlates with the degree of algal cover on coral reefs, according to a study published October 3 in the open-access journal PLOS ONE by Simon and Lauren Freeman…

Rutgers study: certain algae are resistant to climate change

Rutgers study: certain algae are resistant to climate change

A Rutgers University-led study has found that certain green algae are expected to better survive climate change compared to others due to genes they “stole” from bacteria. The Picochlorum single-celled species of green algae, which evolved to tolerate hostile and fluctuating…

Predicting algal blooms

Predicting algal blooms

Environmental Technology magazine notes that the difficulty in predicting how algae blooms will develop lies in their variform nature. With a multitude of different blooms affecting different parts of the coastline and interior bodies of water — from blue-green cyanobacteria to red dinoflagellates Karenia brevis…

Mark Hildebrand, leading algal biofuel scientist, passes away

Mark Hildebrand, leading algal biofuel scientist, passes away

Mark Hildebrand, a research molecular biologist at Scripps Institution of Oceanography at the University of California San Diego, died Aug. 9 after a battle with cancer lasting more than four years. He was 59. Dr. Hildebrand was a leader of the national research effort to develop fuels from algae and…

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