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Journal of Chemistry
Volume 2015, Article ID 969542, 6 pages
Research Article

Determination of Volatile Organic Compounds in Selected Strains of Cyanobacteria

1Institute of Food Technology, University of Novi Sad, Bulevar cara Lazara 1, 21000 Novi Sad, Serbia
2Department of Biology and Ecology, Faculty of Sciences, University of Novi Sad, Trg Dositeja Obradovića 2, 21000 Novi Sad, Serbia

Received 7 December 2014; Revised 21 January 2015; Accepted 10 February 2015

Academic Editor: Tzortzis Nomikos

Copyright © 2015 Ivan Milovanović et al. 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.


Microalgal biomass can be used in creating various functional food and feed products, but certain species of microalgae and cyanobacteria are known to produce various compounds causing off-flavour. In this work, we investigated selected cyanobacterial strains of Spirulina, Anabaena, and Nostoc genera originating from Serbia, with the aim of determining the chemical profile of volatile organic compounds produced by these organisms. Additionally, the influence of nitrogen level during growth on the production of volatile compounds was investigated for Nostoc and Anabaena strains. In addition, multivariate techniques, namely, principal component analysis (PCA) and hierarchical cluster analysis (HCA), were used for making distinction among different microalgal strains. The results show that the main volatile compounds in these species are medium chain length alkanes, but other odorous compounds such as 2-methylisoborneol (0.51–4.48%), 2-pentylfuran (0.72–8.98%), β-cyclocitral (0.00–1.17%), and β-ionone (1.15–2.72%) were also detected in the samples. Addition of nitrogen to growth medium was shown to negatively affect the production of 2-methylisoborneol, while geosmin was not detected in any of the analyzed samples, which indicates that the manipulation of growth conditions may be useful in reducing levels of some unwanted odor-causing components.