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BioMed Research International
Volume 2014, Article ID 657414, 9 pages
Research Article

Production and Enhancement of Omega-3 Fatty Acid from Mortierella alpina CFR-GV15: Its Food and Therapeutic Application

Food Microbiology Department, Central Food Technological Research Institute, Mysore, Karnataka 570020, India

Received 21 February 2014; Revised 25 April 2014; Accepted 25 April 2014; Published 21 May 2014

Academic Editor: Leandro Rocha

Copyright © 2014 Ganesan Vadivelan and Govindarajulu Venkateswaran. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


Mortierella sp. has been known to produce polyunsaturated fatty acids (PUFAs) such as GLA and AA under normal growth medium conditions. Similarly, under the stress condition, this fungus produces EPA and DHA in their mycelial biomass. Among the 67 soil samples screened from the Western Ghats of India, 11 Mortierella isolates showed the presence of omega-6 and omega-3 fatty acid, mainly GLA, AA, EPA, and DHA in starch, yeast-extract medium. Nile red and TTC strains were used for screening their qualitative oleaginesity. Among the representative isolates, when Mortierella sp. is grown in a fat-producing basal medium, a maximum lipid content of 42.0 ± 1.32% in its mycelia, 6.72 ± 0.5% EPA, and 4.09 ± 0.1% DHA was obtained. To understand the Mortierella sp. CFR-GV15, to the species level, its morphology was seen under the light microscope and scanning electron microscope, respectively. These microscopic observations showed that isolate Mortierella sp. CFR-GV15 produced coenocytic hyphae. Later on, its 18S rRNA and the internal transcribed spacer (ITS) sequences were cloned, sequenced, and analyzed phylogenetically to 18S rRNA and ITS1 and ITS4 sequences of related fungi. This newly isolated Mortierella alpina CFR-GV15 was found to be promising culture for the development of an economical method for commercial production of omega-3 fatty acid for food and therapeutical application.